‘It was an absolute Fyre Festival.’ Before Miami contestants were enlisted to save the world, another group signed up in Montreal. But where were the cameras? The producers may have considered it a logistical nightmare, but, in the aftermath of Fyre, it became a cautionary tale about the risks of relying on technology for entertainment.
For $1m, a group of contestants could book an ‘exclusive’ VIP trip through the resort to the Bahamas, in exchange for a photo shoot on the beach with the famous Cirque du Soleil star.
But this was a different kind of hype. It was a festival where celebrities got to meet and pose with young contestants. In the run-up to the festival, the ‘Festival de luxe’ was advertised as the biggest, most exclusive gathering of the year. The tickets sold out in just 24 hours. People who purchased a VIP ticket – and the first round of VIP tickets – paid between $10,000 and $15,000, depending on the destination, according to a ticket price list on MyFestivalFestival.com, which is operated by ticket search site Viagogo.
Then, disaster struck. The Fyre Festival was cancelled because of Hurricane Irma, which hit the Bahamas on the 27th. Despite the hurricane, around 70,000 people attended the festival’s second leg in the Bahamas over the next five days, according to the Bahamas government. More than 2,500 people were left stranded in the aftermath. Some were even forced to travel to the Bahamas by boat.
When you are the only group stranded there, people assume you are rich and probably worth a lot of money. When you are a group of people stranded there, people assume you are poor and likely to get on welfare. In this case, people started to realise it was a much bigger issue than just the people stranded at the Bahamas.
Even though the reality is far from happy, people around the Bahamas decided to get on the social media carousel and put their money where their mouth was. They were the ones who made it a problem.
‘Fyre wasn’t your typical luxury event. People paid $1m for a weekend to get drunk, but they had no clue that $1m would buy not one, not two, but three of the most exclusive experiences of the year.’ A number of people were willing to do whatever they had to do for their country