Look for Fun Fun Fun Fest announcement in June, promoters say

There was plenty to do and see at Fun Fun Fun Fest at Auditorium Shores on Sunday, Nov. 8, 2016.
There was plenty to do and see at Fun Fun Fun Fest at Auditorium Shores on Sunday, Nov. 8, 2015.

After yesterday’s announcement that Graham Williams and James Moody have left Transmission Events, the fate of Fun Fun Fun Fest, the promotion company’s signature event, which turned 10 last year, has been unclear. Bobby Garza, who remains general manager for Transmission after the split, said today that we can expect an announcement about the festival in June.

Garza, who retained most of the Transmission production team in the reorganization, says it’s business as usual for his crew. “We’re going to keep doing what we’re doing,” he said. He remains optimistic about the company’s future.

“I came to Transmission because I love the stuff Transmission does and I love the brand and I still think there’s promise with that,” he said. “We’ve grown not just on the booking side but also on the events side and I think we’ve professionalized that side of the business quite a bit as evidenced by doing things like Fader Fort this year. Those things are exciting to me and it’s definitely the space that I want to keep moving in.”

Beau Armstrong, CEO of Stratus Properties, the real estate company that now owns Transmission and Fun Fun Fun Fest, said his company remains committed to its entertainment ventures. “Stratus is in the hospitality business, and unique, Austin-focused live music events are an important component of our strategy,” he said. “The company generated $19.8 million in entertainment revenue in 2015. At ACL Live alone we hosted 210 events with an estimated attendance of 245,000 people. In addition, ACL Live sold 168,506 concert tickets during 2015.”

MORE FUN FUN FUN: THE FIRST 10 YEARS. The oral history

On Monday, Jason Maurer with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department said the city and the Fun Fun Fun Fest “have been in communication.”

“At this time the festival is reviewing dates available (at Auditorium Shores), and has been in discussions as well with Long Center and Palmer about potential conflicts,” he said via email.

Last year Fun Fun Fun Fest put early bird tickets on sale in February. While it’s possible Transmission could announce details for the November event next month, it does seem late in the game to get a full-scale festival off the ground.

Tuesday morning, Williams’ new company Margin Walker Presents launched a website and set up shop on Instagram and Twitter. The company, billing itself as a “truly independent, boutique promotions, marketing and production agency,” has taken over all of Transmission Events club bookings in Austin, San Antonio and Dallas.

Williams said he also plans to work on festivals and expects to announce soon the first Margin Walker Presents-booked festival, an event he said will be “almost exactly the same as” Fun Fun Fun Fest. He said the new festival will debut this year.

Author: Deborah Sengupta Stith

Deborah Sengupta Stith has been hanging out in dimly lit corners of the city soaking in the music scene for almost 20 years. Twitter: @deborific

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