First Fyre Festival Hearing Set for New York State Court on Thursday

The company behind the disastrous Fyre Festival — the heavily hyped luxury concert in the Bahamas starring Blink-182, Migos and Disclosure that collapsed on in a mess of disorganization on April 29, before it had even started — will have its first day in a New York state court Thursday when investor Oleg Itkin is scheduled for a hearing for an injunction to freeze the company’s assets, books and records.

Itkin’s law firm, Caitlin Robin & Associates, on Friday filed an order to show cause and a motion for summary judgment in lieu of a complaint, and got a judge to quickly sign-off on the hearing date. The Itkin suit becomes the first entity — federal or state — to force Fyre Media principal William McFarland to publicly account for his actions. McFarland, who was served at his residence over the weekend, is not expected to personally appear, and instead is likely to be represented by an attorney.

The complaint alleges Itkin loaned Fyre $700,000 in three promissory notes, the last of which was personally guaranteed by McFarland in May. The injunction seeks to freeze assets in various bank accounts and an account at Scott Trade.

“We made an emergency application based on the high likelihood that the corporate assets of Fyre Media and personal assets of Billy McFarland would be squandered or dissipated,” said Caitlin Robin attorney Michael Quinn, noting that this is the first step in a process of determining the nature of scope of events related to McFarland and Fyre Media.

Allegations in Ikin’s suit include that the defendant was loaned the $700,000 on the belief of representations made in writing that Fyre Media owned land worth $8.4 million of “Black Point Exuma land,” had assets of $31 million, and more than $3 million cash in two bank accounts.

The suit claims that McFarland represented in December that his Fyre Media — encompassing the Fyre Festival and talent-booking software known as the Fyre App — had total revenue of $21.6 million and income of $1.4 million.

These are claims that other litigants have publicly challenged, and with at least nine other lawsuits — including six class actions — against Fyre and McFarland, there is likely to be a scramble for whatever assets can be captured. Many of the investor litigants are alleging that the “robust” outlook McFarland presented for Fyre’s capitalization was to some extent fabricated.

The suit further alleges that McFarland claimed the artist Drake booked a $1.5 million performance through the Fyre App (he did not), and that the festival garnered more than $77 million worth of social media promotion.

The hearing is set for Thursday a.m. 9:30 in the Commercial Divison of the New York State Court at 60 Centre Street. Attorneys for Fyre and McFarland did not respond to inquiries at press time.

McFarland said in an interview shortly after the festival was cancelled that his staff was “ambitious” and “overwhelmed,” blamed many of the company’s problems on poor infrastructure, and promised to hold a free festival for disappointed concertgoers next year.

More Music

  • Little Mix Star Jesy Nelson Making

    Little Mix's Jesy Nelson Making BBC Documentary About Mental Health and Body Image

    Little Mix star Jesy Nelson is making a one-off documentary for the BBC in which she will explore issues surrounding body shaming and mental health in the age of social media. “Jesy Nelson: My Story” will launch on the BBC’s youth-skewed online channel BBC Three and then play on BBC One. Girl band Little Mix [...]

  • Michael Jackson R Kelly

    'Leaving Neverland,' 'Surviving R. Kelly' Composers on How They Scored Sexual Abuse Docs

    How do you put music to child sexual abuse — especially if the accused predators are musical icons? That’s the challenge composers Chad Hobson and Nathan Matthew David faced as they scored HBO’s “Leaving Neverland” and Lifetime’s “Surviving R. Kelly,” respectively. The documentaries are built around interviews with the alleged victims of Michael Jackson (two [...]

  • Camp Flog Gnaw, Day 1

    Lollapalooza Reveals Some of 2019 Lineup: Lil Wayne, Tame Impala, Janelle Monae

    Tired of learning about a festival’s lineup by scrutinizing a tiny jpeg of a poster with miniscule fonts? Apparently Lollapalooza’s organizers are — they’ve come up with the novel approach of revealing part of the lineup via a video in partnership with the Chicago-based animal shelter PAWS, which mixes in clues about 2019 Lollapalooza performers in [...]

  • Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer,

    Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer, Julia Stiles Join Strip Club Drama 'Hustlers'

    STXfilms has signed Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer, Julia Stiles, and Mercedes Ruehl to join strip club drama “Hustlers,” starring Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez. The film will be directed by Lorene Scafaria (“The Meddler”). Mette Towley and Trace Lysette (“Transparent”) are also in negotiations to join the film. The project, originally set up [...]

  • Peloton Sued for $150 Million for

    Peloton Sued for $150 Million for Using Drake, Lady Gaga Music Without License

    A group of publishers including Downtown Music Publishing, Pulse Music Publishing, ole, peermusic, Ultra Music, Big Deal Music, Reservoir, Round Hill, TRO Essex Music Group and The Royalty Network filed a lawsuit against Peloton for infringement of more than a thousand musical works, according to a statement from the National Music Publishers Association. The plaintiffs are [...]

  • Brandi Carlile,Maren Morris. Brandi Carlile and

    ACM Awards Add Brandi Carlile, Kelly Clarkson, Dan + Shay to Performance Lineup

    Brooks & Dunn had a hit once called “Put a Girl In It,” and that’s just what the Academy of Country Music Awards have done, adding Kelly Clarkson, Brandi Carlile and Ashley McBryde to the lineup of performers for the April 7 telecast on CBS. While they’re at it, they also added Brooks & Dunn, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content