Coachella expands to second weekend

2012 festival to feature duplicate lineups on consecutive weeks

In an attempt to deal with sell-out crowds, overwhelming demand for passes and crowd gridlock, the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival will expand to two consecutive three-day runs in 2012, with duplicate lineups on both weekends.

Shows are set for April 13-15 and April 20-22 next year at the Empire Polo Club in Indio.

Organizers of the Goldenvoice-promoted festival promised “same lineup, same art, same place, different people” in 2012.

An announcement posted on the Coachella Web site Tuesday said, “We know many of you were unable to attend this year’s festival because passes sold out much sooner than anticipated… We also know some of you purchased through non legitimate sources and were inconvenienced, gouged or totally scammed. We hope that these changes will give everyone the opportunity to purchase directly from Coachella.com.”

Headlined by Kanye West, Arcade Fire and Kings of Leon, the 2011 Coachella fest, held at the Empire Polo Club, tied event’s attendance records with 75,000 three-day passes sold. Many observers carped that crowds and queues reached unmanageable levels this year.

Three-day passes for next year’s festival go on sale for $269 this Friday and will be available for a week. On-sale will represent attendees’ only chance to buy passes on the payment plan (10% down and eight monthly installments).