Tim Ingham at Music Business Worldwide has confirmed with Apple that the annual Apple Music (formerly iTunes) Festival, which ran in London for ten years, is no longer:
However, the cancellation of the festival doesn’t signal a move away from live events by Apple Music completely.
The brand was recently a partner of shows by Haim and Skepta in London and Arcade Fire in Brooklyn and it had a heavy presence at SXSW in Texas earlier this year – where it backed shows from Lana Del Rey, Vince Staples and DJ Khaled.
In addition, Apple Music also sponsored Drake’s 32-date Summer Sixteen Tour in 2016 and it supports regular live sessions from its ‘Up Next’ artists.
The closure of the Apple Music Festival is likely because Apple is concentrating its resources on one-off events like these, in addition to its original content efforts in video – which have recently included a Carpool Karaoke spin-off series and a behind-the-scenes documentary on Harry Styles.
That makes sense to me. In the same way that Apple stopped doing trade shows like Macworld Expo, it can now reach so many more people through its online services or a variety of smaller events around the world. I’d also wager that we haven’t seen the last of an Apple-branded musical event.