Sound Relief 2020, a series of bushfire relief concerts to be held in March, has been cancelled as organisers say it won't produce an 'impactful result'

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin at the Sound Relief concert in 2009. (Photo by Graham Denholm/WireImage)
  • Sound Relief 2020, a series of bushfire relief concerts, has been cancelled.
  • Sound Relief announced the cancellation on social media, saying it won’t be going ahead in March.
  • While the exact details are still hazy, Sound Relief said in its statement “we believe proceeding with the concerts in March won’t produce the impactful result that we believe these events can – and should – have.”
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

Sound Relief 2020, a series of concerts designed to raise funds for bushfire relief efforts, will no longer go ahead in March.

Sound Relief was announced in a tweet on January 8, with possible attendees told to “stay tuned for more information”. Elton John, Ed Sheeran, Kylie Minogue and Pink were tipped to perform at the concerts, the Herald Sun reported.

In a statement on Facebook, Sound Relief said going ahead with the concerts “won’t produce the impactful result” it believes it should have.

“Since announcing our intention to undertake Sound Relief 2020 the offer of assistance from international and domestic artists, industry, media and suppliers has been second to none,” Sound Relief wrote.

“However Sound Relief is a series of concert events that we don’t wish to stage lightly and after careful consideration, we believe proceeding with the concerts in March won’t produce the impactful result that we believe these events can – and should – have.”

The organisation added that as Australia has suffered through the fires, as well as drought and record temperatures, it may consider future events that focus on restoration and recovery efforts.

“It is clear that there is no overnight fix for the issues our beautiful country is currently facing, and our discussions for any future event are subsequently shifting to restoration, recovery and prevention and a view to maximising results to best benefit these areas,” the organisers wrote.

Here is the full statement:

Sound Relief was announced around the same time as Fire Fight Australia, a similar bushfire relief concert. Fire Fight Australia will be held on February 16 at ANZ Stadium in Sydney and hosted by Celeste Barber, the comedian who held the world’s largest Facebook fundraiser for bushfire relief.

Fire Fight’s acts including Alice Cooper, Baker Boy, Queen and 5 Seconds of Summer.

Sound Relief’s possible attendees are upset the concert isn’t going ahead

At the time of cancellation, Sound Relief had not sold tickets to the public. Despite this, people still expressed their disappointment over the Sound Relief concert being cancelled. One Instagram user said, “This is beyond disappointing.”

Image: Screenshot, Sound Relief Instagram

Some Facebook users even said they decided not to purchase tickets for the Fire Fight concert in Sydney because of Sound Relief.

Image: Screenshot, Sound Relief Facebook page

Michael Gudinski, co-founder of Mushroom Records, co-organised the Sound Relief concerts in 2009, which were held at the Melbourne and Sydney Cricket Grounds. The concerts were set up to support people affected by the Black Saturday Bushfires in Victoria as well as the Queensland floods, with major acts including the Kings of Leon, Coldplay and Midnight Oil.

According to the Herald Sun, the event came together in five weeks. The ABC reported the concert raised more than $8 million.

We’ll just have to see if Sound Relief decides to reorganise the concert for a later date.

The organisers of Sound Relief and Mushroom Group have been contacted for comment.


Read more:

Celeste Barber’s bushfire fundraiser on Facebook is officially the largest in the platform’s history, raising over $50 million

More than $73 million has been raised through Facebook for bushfire relief in Australia, as social media and new online platforms pave the way for faster donations

John McEnroe pledged to donate $1,000 to bushfire relief for every set Nick Kyrgios wins during the rest of the Australian Open – and Kyrgios served 100

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