UPDATE: And just a few minutes later, according to @Neocha, Shanghai Midi is canceled. Apparently there was a permit issue?
First we were told it was coming to Shanghai. Then it was going to be in Zhenjiang. Given that this isn’t the first time we’ve been promised our own Midi, there was naturally some skepticism. Seeking to “stop the rumors”, the Beijing Midi School has contacted Shanghaiist with an official press release to say that there definitely will be a Shanghai Midi Festival. Meanwhile, the organisers who originally announced the Shanghai Midi are claiming that there will be one in Zhenjiang as well. Confused?
Here’s what the school have told us:
“The official MIDI Music festival will be held in Shanghai on May 1st and 2nd in 2009 on 3 indoor and outdoor stages at Red Town, Shanghai Sculpture Space. The MIDI music festival is the biggest outdoor rock festival in Mainland China and will be the largest party in Shanghai of the spring and summer this year. “MIDI Music Festival” is arriving in Shanghai for the first time and it will bring an exhilarating International Festival Vibe and diverse musical party to music and party lovers in Shanghai.”
The School are yet to give details of any bands, but have said that there will be Midi’s usual mix of genres with “non-stop music from 12pm to 11pm” and that tickets will be available from next month. The Midi School even go on to say that “this year, MIDI comes to Shanghai with the blessing of the local government and allows the Shanghai music fans that have been craving Beijing MIDI will have their dreams come true.”
Anyone who dreamt of Midi going to Zhenjiang shouldn’t be too disappointed however, as, according to the Shanghai Festival Facebook page:
“the ‘real’ Midi is happening in Shanghai. It is also happening in Zhenjiang. The two festivals will be different to reflect their different audiences. Shanghai Midi will feature a wider selection of international bands and also more bands from Shanghai, whereas the Zhenjiang Midi will not.”
We’re not sure who that leaves performing in Zhenjiang exactly.
As excited as we are about the prospect of a Midi Festival in Shanghai, we can’t help but feel a certain degree of skepticism. For one thing, as mentioned above, we’ve been here before. People claiming association to Midi have tried to put on something similar in the past only for it to be cancelled or for them to be shown as not attached to Midi at all, just taking advantage of the bands being here – Then again, if there’s a good roster of bands, we don’t care too much who brought them.
Despite this announcement having come from the Midi School itself, even if the Shanghai Midi was to go ahead, is the Sculpture Space really the best place for it? Beijing’s Midi has been at its best when held in Haidian Park – i.e. a big space with room for camping and something akin to what most of us think of when we hear the words “music festival”.
Although no details of the site have been released, the Zhenjiang location could be something closer to a festival, but as some people have found out the hard way, you should be careful how much faith you put in what’s written on Facebook.
If Shanghai is to have a Midi Festival with “the blessing of the local government” then it’s great news. however, we hope you’ll excuse us if we reserve getting too excited about it before May 1st.