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Thailand bags Tomorrowland for 2026 after scoring Summer Sonic for August

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin aims to boost appeal to international events in hopes of remedying economic “crisis”

  • Words: Amira Waworuntu | Image: Tomorrowland Facebook
  • 26 March 2024
Thailand bags Tomorrowland for 2026 after scoring Summer Sonic for August

Thailand is gearing up to welcome two major international music festivals, Summer Sonic and Tomorrowland, in a bid to boost its tourism sector and entertainment industry.

On March 23, 2024, Thai Government spokesman Chai Watcharong unveiled plans showcasing the country's efforts to organise a plethora of international entertainment events, which also include Formula One Group, Formula E, and Art Basel among the two already secured.

Summer Sonic Bangkok 2024 has been announced for August 24-25 at Impact Muang Thong Thani in Nonthaburi province, marking the first time the music festival series will be held in an ASEAN country.

As for Tomorrowland (another first for Southeast Asia), dance music enthusiasts will have to wait another two years as the festival lands in 2026. It'll be worth the wait, though, since it’s being planned to be hosted in Thailand for 10 consecutive years, Watcharong announced.

The decision to host these world-class events comes in the wake of Thailand's missed opportunity to host Taylor Swift's Eras Tour, which made Singapore its sole destination in Southeast Asia due to an exclusive agreement.

The pop star previously had to cancel her 2014 Bangkok concert due to former Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha's military coup.

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Thailand’s current Prime Minister, ex-businessman Srettha Thavisin, expressed regret over the missed opportunity and emphasised the importance of attracting international stars to stimulate the country's economy, which he repeatedly mentions is in a “crisis”.

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The country has been experiencing an average growth rate of less than 2% over the past decade, contrasting sharply with the regional norm of over 4%.

Despite missing out on hosting Swift's tour this year, Thailand is now focused on leveraging its appeal to international artists and event organisers, recognising their potential to draw foreign visitors and boost local businesses.

While the Thai government has made a public announcement regarding Tomorrowland, the festival has also issued a statement regarding its event for 2026.

Mixmag Asia reached out to Tomorrowland, to which press coordinator and spokeswoman Debby Wilmsen replied: "Tomorrowland has a real interest in Thailand and is seriously exploring the possibility of a festival in the Kingdom. For now, Tomorrowland explores the feasibility of such a project. At this stage, there is no confirmation yet on an actual festival taking place, this is what the feasibility study will make clear."

In addition, Debby also mentions how the Tomorrowland team is "very honoured" that the authorities are eager to welcome the festival.

Via: The Pattaya News & South China Morning Post

This original article was published on March 26 and updated on March 30 after receiving an official statement from Tomorrowland.

Amira Waworuntu is Mixmag Asia’s Managing Editor, follow her on Instagram.

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