Glastonbury 2021: Magical moments marred by technical difficulties

Glastonbury 2021 was not short of the unexpected, with performances by Coldplay, Haim and The Smile livestreamed.

Glastonbury 2021: Magical moments marred by technical difficulties

This year's Glastonbury was one of the UK’s most anticipated events, but has been heavily criticised for being a “digital equivalent of a washed out festival”, as technical difficulties ran rampant throughout the livestream and ticket holders were unable to access the event. 

Driift Live, who were the technical organisers of the event, issued an apology to those who could not get into the livestream on 22 May, providing a free link to allow access for the remaining days of the event. However, fans complained that they were unable to rewind the initial link for acts like Wolf Alice and Michael Kiwanuka, who performed earlier that day. 

The confusion didn’t end there, as by 9pm the stream – access for which thousands of fans bought tickets costing £20 – was made free for everyone. 

Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis posted an apology on Twitter, saying: "I am so sorry about the problems with the stream tonight...I really hope you can enjoy the rest of it tonight. And, again, I'm just so sorry for anyone who's had issues."

Driift later released a statement apologising ‘unreservedly’ for fans who had had their plans disrupted. 

Despite the livestream fiasco, one thing that didn’t falter was the incomparable talent. The likes of Haim, Coldplay and Wolf Alice didn’t hold back as they performed to the empty Worthy Farm. It saw the old and the new combined as they premiered The Smile, a new trio featuring Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead, and Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner.

Coldplay heralded the concert as a “very special night at Worthy Farm tonight and a home gig for us,” having headlined the festival four times previously.

Without a doubt the music was the star of the show and was the anchor that stopped ticket holders and online watchers from giving up on Glastonbury this year. 

The director of the event, titled Glastonbury presents Live at Worthy Farm, Paul Dugdale said: “Glastonbury is an adventure, and you never quite know what’s around the corner and often the best parts of the festival are the parts you weren’t expecting, and that’s really fun.”

However, the unexpected was much more than we all bargained for this time. 

Header Image Credit: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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De-Mornae Clarke

De-Mornae Clarke Kickstart Team

De-mornae is a Kickstart Journalist for Voice. Music, interviews and pop culture are her preferred topics of interest but is often pushing her own creative boundaries to prove that anyone can have an opinion regardless of their background, education or class.

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