90s nostalgia

Angry ticketholders left seeking refunds after artists bail from music fest near Toronto

Music lovers with a taste for the 1990s sound will be arriving in droves to the 90's Nostalgia Festival running this weekend in Vaughan, but some ticketholders aren't too happy after some big-name artists cancelled after the window for refunds closed.

The artists who cancelled were among some of the biggest draws to the three-day festival planned at Improve Canada near Steeles and Keele.

Dropped acts include Eiffel 65 and Haddaway, whose cancellations were confirmed in a statement from 90's Nostalgia Festival.

Promoters issued the statement through their Facebook page, saying that "Eiffel 65 will not be able to attend the tour due to an illness in the band. Haddaway as well will not be able to attend due to pandemic-related travel issues."

"All other bands are here safely in Canada and will be playing a little bit longer to compensate, and we promise an amazing and unforgettable show," the statement continues.

There are also rumblings in the event's Facebook comments that other top-billing artists like Stevie B have been quietly removed from setlists. There has been no confirmation of this from event organizers.

Understandably, ticketholders who bought in to see these specific artists were not happy to learn of the cancellations, and some disappointed fans have been trying to get a refund on their purchase.

Refunds were supposedly being offered early on when the pandemic hit, though there are reports that the event made the switch to non-refundable earlier this year when it was still unclear how smoothly the following months would unfold in terms of case counts and vaccinations.

The event website's festival policies section currently states, "NO Refunds or exchanges – This is a Rain or Shine Event."

One ticketholder, who wishes to remain anonymous, tells blogTO, "I bought tickets back in January of 2020 before the pandemic hit."

"On March 24, 2020, the festival was postponed until September 12th of that year. They offered people a 14-day window from April 1st – 14th to refund their tickets. On July 6, they postponed the show to June 19th, 2021, and said they were offering refunds."

"I believe after this, at some point, they stopped offering refunds, but not sure when. Definitely not at a time when it would have been reasonable to foresee how Covid would interact with things at this point though."

The ticketholder is frustrated with how fans have been treated since the cancellations, saying, "the promoter is refusing to even acknowledge that there's an issue."

"They've replied to a few comments on their Instagram and Facebook pages and have been super dismissive and rude, [but they] haven't acknowledged anything about refunds in the days since the announcement that those artists weren’t going to make it."

"I've seen comments from people emailing several times and getting no response back."

blogTO reached out to 90's Nostalgia Fest to comment on the cancellations, but the event organizers have yet to respond.

Lead photo by

90's Nostalgia

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