LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — Gary Richards, founder of EDM events such as the Hard series and Holy Ship! announced that he's leaving Live Nation and will no longer be curating any of the events that he founded.
In a post to his social media on Wednesday, Richards wrote:
"I am leaving Live Nation after this week's Hard event to pursue an incredible new opportunity that I will share with everyone in the weeks to come. Accordingly, I will not be attending or curating the next Holy Ship cruise event in 2018. I have the utmost respect for Michael Rapino and Live Nation. Let's make this week's 10th anniversary show the best HARD event ever!"
While Richards did not elaborate on his plans after exiting Live Nation, a report in L.A. Weekly cited unnamed sources who suggested that Richards may be headed to LiveStyle, formerly SFXI, the EDM-focused live events company launched by Robert Sillerman which filed for bankruptcy in early 2016.
Richards founded Hard in 2007, producing festivals in Los Angeles, but later expanded the brand into a nationally touring festival, as well as adding smaller branded events, such as the Hard Haunted Mansion and the Holy Ship! cruises before Live Nation acquired the company in 2012.
In recent months, however, there have been some hints at creative differences behind the scenes with Hard. In an interview with Variety in April, Richards said:
"I think that HARD has grown by leaps and bounds, and Live Nation has given me a platform to expand monetarily in things I wouldn’t have been able to do if I was funding everything. But then again, there are other forces at play here that are running the electronic scene in different directions than me, and they kind of battle with me and that part of it’s not fun — and it’s unnecessary."