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A case of David and Goliath in the festival world has come to an end with the “big guy” on top. Rapture Electronic Music Festival‘s federal lawsuit against Ultra Music Festival (UMF) has been thrown out by a local judge, reports Your EDM. Rapture’s federal lawsuit followed the cease and desist warning that Rapture issued to Ultra in January. The official ruling in the case asserts, “‘[…] the Complaint fails on its face to plausibly allege any unlawful conspiracy or anticompetitive arrangement between Defendants. Plaintiff relies exclusively on conclusory allegations of conspiracy backed by no factual allegations whatsoever.’” Rapture may either amend or formally withdraw the complaint.
Rapture initially cited their possession of a signed, previously arranged agreement to use the Virginia Key land throughout 2020, but more specifically, from March 28-30, 2019, the very same dates that Ultra declared for its 2019 installment. Rapture referenced their application to host their own festival on Virginia Key, dated March 11, 2018. Rapture additionally paid a deposit to use the island from March 28-30. Needless to say, only one of the festivals can occupy Virginia Key.
“We have filed a federal lawsuit that will include an emergency injunction against Ultra, City of Miami and Virginia Key Beach Trust in order to return our location, claiming what is rightfully ours. At this point the future of Rapture at Virginia Key Beach Park is in the Federal judge’s hands. We have full trust in the federal system to obtain a fair judgement,” Rapture stated in a Facebook post. UMF coordinators responded to Rapture’s legal complaint in a press release that proclaims Rapture’s lawsuit to bear “no merit.”
The press release asserts that “Ultra lawfully secured its license to host its annual production on Virginia Key, including by obtaining necessary approvals from the City of Miami Commission.” “We are excited to present our fans with what will be the best and most transformative music festival that we have ever produced by way of music, artists, experience, cutting edge and technologically advanced production elements and novel art installations,” the press release concludes. Ultra’s full-length statement follows below, along with Rapture’s 19-page formal complaint:
FEBRUARY 2, 2019 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
There is no merit to yesterday’s lawsuit. To claim that Ultra has violated the law is both disappointing and misplaced. Ultra lawfully secured its license to host its annual production on Virginia Key, including by obtaining necessary approvals from the City of Miami Commission. We are excited to present our fans with what will be the best and most transformative music festival that we have ever produced by way of music, artists, experience, cutting edge and technologically advanced production elements and novel art installations. We look forward to hosting our 21st edition of the Ultra Music Festival at our new home at Miami Marine Stadium and Historic Virginia Key Beach Park on March 29, 30 and 31, 2019.
H/T: EDM Tunes + Your EDM