The reggae star and son of Bob has made a last-minute withdrawal from his Monday headlining set, having led the final lineup announcement back in November.
“I would like to apologise to all the music fans in New Zealand and Australia,” Marley said in a statement. “Unfortunately, I won’t be making it down there for the music festival, the WOMAD music festival next weekend.
“I had some unforeseen family responsibilities that came up and I have to take care of it. I always love coming. I was really looking forward to this trip and we haven’t been there in a while so it was really sad that we’re not making it but alas, next year at the WOMAD festivals we will be there and so we will see you then.”
WOMADelaide organisers are currently working to lock in a replacement act for Marley, who was due to close out the festival’s main Foundation Stage on Monday night.
WOMADelaide 2020 opens tomorrow night, featuring Laura Marling, Mavis Staples, Bill Callahan, The Cat Empire and Aldous Harding among dozens of acts from 32 countries. Given the coronavirus-induced travel restrictions that have seen a handful of other Adelaide Festival artists withdraw or adjust their plans, it’s a miracle the WOMAD lineup has so far been relatively unaffected.
6 – 9 March