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Glastonbury Drama: Lana Del Rey's Late Arrival Sparks Controversy and Sexism Debate

by Phoenix Atkinson


This years Glastonbury festival brought unforgettable moments, including unexpected performances like Rick Astley covering The Smiths and AC/DC (a truly legendary experience). 


However, amidst all the excitement, one incident stole the spotlight and sparked a heated debate. Lana Del Rey, renowned singer-songwriter, arrived 30 minutes late for her set - a pretty common occurrence in the music industry. 


Yet, this instance received disproportionate attention, revealing underlying issues of sexism and mental health are still prevalent. 

Image: Joseph Okpako/WireImage

Late arrivals at music festivals are not uncommon due to the inherent challenges of running events on schedule. To illustrate this point, let's consider a hypothetical scenario: imagine if a prominent band like Guns N' Roses were three hours late for a packed concert at Manchester Arena. The consequence? They would likely secure a headline slot at Glastonbury, obviously!

This demonstrates how the drama surrounding Lana Del Rey's tardiness has been blown out of proportion, unfairly placing all the blame on her.

It is crucial to acknowledge that organizing such events involves a complex web of communication, logistics, and unforeseen circumstances. Lana Del Rey certainly didn't purposefully orchestrate her late arrival to provoke annoyance or create chaos. Rather, it is more likely a result of miscommunication, disorganized arrangements, and unfortunate circumstances. In fact, after not touring for years and playing an absolutely massive festival (with over 40,000 staff, never mind attendees), it could easily have been due to issues with anxiety. 


However, the internet quickly assigned the entire blame to Lana Del Rey, portraying her as the sole orchestrator of this incident. Such a perspective fails to recognize the double standards at play. When, hypothetically, Guns N' Roses perform two hours late at a concert like Rock for Rio, they are hailed as cool and rebellious - with Axl Rose's behaviour almost celebrated. This stark contrast in perception raises questions about gender bias and unfair judgment.


Lana Del Rey cited her hair as the reason for the delay, indicating a significant miscommunication between her team and the organizers at Glastonbury. This incident highlights the need for improved coordination and communication between artists and event organizers to prevent similar occurrences in the future. 


As a musician, I have personally experienced situations where call times were drastically off, soundchecks were rushed minutes before the show, or inaccurate information was provided. However, Glastonbury is not an impromptu pub gig; it is a meticulously planned event that undergoes months of preparation, including dress rehearsals, technical checks, and hair and makeup arrangements. The fact that such a glaring oversight was not addressed prior to the night of the performance indicates organizational shortcomings that cannot be solely attributed to Lana Del Rey.


If Glastonbury wishes to avoid such incidents in the future, it must address its internal issues and ensure effective communication and coordination. 


Moreover, cutting off the remainder of Lana Del Rey's set was an unfortunate and ineffective solution. Placing blame solely on one party involved would oversimplify the situation. If anything, that’s bad PR for them - not Lana. 


This incident serves as a reminder of the need for better understanding, communication, and fairness within the music industry.


Edited by Emily Duff

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