Last updated: 1 April 2020

We are carrying on the planning of this summer's festival, and we are keeping track of developments. But what else do we do with regards to Coronavirus?

Many of you out there are currently asking us how the spreading of the Coronavirus/COVID-19 currently affects this summer's Roskilde Festival.

Amid the joy of anticipation for RF50, it is perfectly understandable that many people start to wonder whether you can feel safe on the festival site this summer – and whether there will be a festival at all!

First of all, we continue our planning expecting that Roskilde Festival will take place as expected.  

RF50 is still several months away, and the authorities’ recommendations of limiting assemblies over 10 participants apply until 13 April. But then what?

Do we have a plan B? Can you get your money back? What is done to prevent infection on the festival site?

There is no doubt that the whole world is in a very serious situation that none of us have experienced before. At the same time, the situation – and the recommendations of the authorities – change almost from day to day.

This is why it is difficult for us to give clear answers to all the questions you are asking us, because we have not been in a similar situation before.

Below, we give you the best answers we can to the most frequently asked questions.

We know that the answers can change along with the situation. So we will keep this page updated depending on how the situation develops.

How do you relate to the risk of infection?

We are keeping a close eye on how the situation develops, and we have a close dialogue with the authorities. Roskilde Festival takes place this summer. So we are carrying on our planning of this year's festival, and, as always, it is carried out in close cooperation with the authorities and emergency services.

As critical and unpredictable the situation is, we believe that it is just as important that we – in consideration for the recommendations the health authorities provide – continue our planning and do not unnecessarily bring things to a standstill, thereby contributing to unnecessary negative consequences and concerns.

What does it mean to you that the authorities currently advise against larger assemblies?

We adhere to the requirements and recommendations of the authorities. However, we cannot answer specifically as to how potential restrictions on larger assemblies this summer will affect us as the execution of the festival will depend on the specific requirements of the authorities in the given scenarios.

Is it even responsible to let the festival take place?

We will arrange the festival based on the instructions and requirements of the authorities – and we always plan Roskilde Festival in close collaboration with the authorities. This summer’s festival is no exception, and we believe and hope that the situation – with all the measures now being implemented – will go in a positive direction.

Why don't you cancel immediately?

It has been a few weeks since Denmark closed down, and July is still three months away. We do not think it would be responsible for us to make such a far-reaching decision on the present basis and without knowing what the future holds.

It is the authorities who authorise whether we can carry through the festival based on our safety plan, and we neither can nor will defy the authorities’ requirements and directions as we always plan Roskilde Festival in close collaboration with the authorities.

At the same time, we have an important responsibility not to let concerns take over. We owe that responsibility to both the many voluntary societies that help create the festival and to the many smaller cultural institutions, companies and partners who play an important role in realising the festival. Many of these are already suffering from the shutdown.

Therefore, we must stay calm right now. We will fully support the actions of the authorities, follow the developments and, of course, act responsibly and realistically and at the same time hope and believe that the situation will move in a positive direction.

Why don't you make a decision yourself?

It is not the assessment of ourselves nor anyone else in the surrounding world that should make the basis of which actions to be taken to contain the spread of the Coronavirus – not now or this summer. It must and should always be based on the assessment of the authorities.

It is our understanding that the authorities will know much more about the development of the epidemic in the weeks following Easter. That is why we are awaiting further assessment of the situation by the authorities.

Do you have a plan B?

We will continue our planning and adhere to the requirements and recommendations of the authorities

At the same time, we are in an unpredictable situation for everybody and we cannot predict the developments and the assessment of the situation of the authorities in months to come.

As a natural part of our planning and preparedness we are also working on a risk assessment of the situation where we prepare for situations like quarantine conditions for employees and volunteers and alternative conduct of larger meetings as well as collaboration agreements and potential needs for optimising the hygiene on the festival site.

Will ticket buyers get a refund if the festival is to be cancelled?

Any reimbursement of the ticket price will be subject to all the conditions that will apply at that given time, including potential cancellation injunctions. We cannot predict such circumstances today. This is why we cannot answer the question any further than this.

Has any artists cancelled?

No. If we receive cancellations from artists due to fear of infection, we will handle it in the same way as we handle other cancellations, which means that we will work on finding an appropriate replacement as soon as possible.

Is the festival insured?

Roskilde Festival is not insured to an extent that takes into account an epidemic like the Coronavirus, so we cannot give specific answers as to what our position is in case of an injunction of limitation or cancellation. In any case, the situation will be serious.

What are the consequences of a cancellation?

A cancellation will have tremendous consequences. Not just for Roskilde Festival Charity Society – the organiser of the festival – but also for the hundreds of associations and organisations who set up stalls or provide service work at the festival. Many of these ground a large part of their operations and development on the earnings from the festival.

A cancellation will also have consequences for both large and small cultural partners and organisations who contribute to the festival with both programme content and production. They are already severely afflicted by the shutdown, and with a festival cancellation they can lose both earnings and the opportunity to have exposure and relationships that benefit their work.

Finally, a cancellation will mean that Roskilde Festival Charity Society cannot measure up to its main purpose as a non-profit fundraising event. That is to make a profit that will be donated in full for the benefit of children and young people. This will affect a number of organisations and initiatives both in Denmark and abroad. They are also currently in need of some extra help.

Do you have a plan to prevent the danger of infection?

Yes. We are preparing safety documentation that takes into account all relevant risks and threats in the surrounding world. This includes infectious diseases, including the Coronavirus.

The safety documentation describes how we ensure a safe environment and, not least, how we ensure that legislation is followed. We obtain the permission of the authorities to arrange the festival on the basis of the safety documentation and we are liable to follow the plan.

During the festival, we cooperate closely with the authorities, including Region Zealand and the hospital service system who are present at the festival. Our own medical service consists of approximately 400 doctors, nurses and first-aiders.

If the participants at the festival feel unwell, our emergency service take charge and make sure the participants get the help they need. This also applies to symptoms of Coronavirus.

We have not come to a decision as to whether one can be tested in the festival site, but we will follow the recommendations of the authorities.

Please notice that you can read more about how to protect yourself and others on the Danish Health Authority’s website which contains questions and answers about the Coronavirus.

How does Glastonbury Festival’s decision to cancel this year’s festival affect Roskilde Festival?

It's very sad that such a big and significant festival as Glastonbury has to cancel because of the extraordinary circumstances. We fully understand that many are concerned whether Roskilde Festival is at risk because the two festivals take place right after each other and also share a number of artists in the line-up.

However, the fact that Glastonbury Festival cancels has no direct significance regarding Roskilde Festival. Among other things, Glastonbury's organisers say that they are cancelling because they have a very long construction period, with thousands of volunteers and staff gathering three months before the start of the festival, living and constructing the festival together. This is not the case with us. We build the festival site over a shorter period of time and closer to the start of the festival.

There is a number of other major festivals in Europe, taking place in the same period as Glastonbury and Roskilde Festival. We have a close correspondence with them, and we all share the view that it is possible to carry through our festivals this summer and we agree to continue the planning of them. The cancellation of Glastonbury does not mean that the artists will not go on tour, and thus the cancellation does not affect our programme.