The plug on a new festival that was scheduled to take place in Antioch, California between July 13-15 has suddenly been pulled with some strange circumstances surrounding it.
XO Festival was set to launch this week with multiple stages for celebrity hosts, music, and comedy. It was also supposed to have food and beverages from local purveyors in the Bay Area. But several reports have confirmed that artists and comedians who were billed to perform were either not paid or never confirmed, according to KQED. As a result, other acts pulled their involvement.
They almost spelled my name correctly in this comedy festival I am not performing in! I’ll still be on the road next week. https://t.co/bGfIxlBHK8
— Paco Romane (@pacoromane) July 8, 2018
In a statement on their website, organizers of the festival wrote, “We are deeply disappointed to have to announce that due to the venue canceling the XO Music Festival earlier today and in part due to the fact that there were some negative media reports targeting us, with which we strongly disagree. The XO Music Festival scheduled to occur on July 13-15 will be postponed to another time to be announced at a future date.” KQED also writes that in a since-edited statement, the festival claimed it was canceled due to low ticket sales.
The local police also provided a statement through their Facebook page.
As of July 10, there were no signs of a festival being prepped on the Contra Costa Event Park grounds, according to KQED.
Festival organizer Habibullah Said Qadir is also reportedly out on bail after being arrested for multiple identity theft and fraud felonies in February, according to FOX KTVU.
According to the Fremont Police, Qadir and his brother tricked landlords out of $120,000 in unpaid rent and damages for three years involving three high-end properties.
The festival was also forced to change its name from XOXO Festival to XO Festival after a trademark lawsuit with a festival of the same name in Portland.
Purported sponsors like BART and Thizzler also reportedly claim they were never involved with the festival, causing XO Festival to take their logos off the website.
One vendor, Tony B. Conscious, told KQED that a XO Festival representative told him that vendors made $12,000 from booths the previous year despite this year being the first time it would have taken place.