Lieberberg: ‘Our Audience Is A Role Model’

Germany’s Rock am Ring had to be temporarily suspended on Friday, June 2, due to a possible terrorist threat on the festival’s site Nürburgring, to which the festival had returned for this year’s edition. Festival boss Marek Lieberberg said the event was a “demonstration of peace” when it resumed the next day.  

Marek Lieberberg
Thomas Frey / dpa via AP
– Marek Lieberberg
Festival organizer Marek Lieberberg announces the interruption of the Rock am Ring festival in Nuerburg, Germany, June 2.


Rock Am Ring To Resume

Rock Am Ring Press Conference

“Our audience is a role model. These are extraordinary human beings. I think their behavior was exemplary. You wouldn’t experience that at a soccer game or any other event: 86,000 people exiting the festival site within 15 minutes, taking care of each other and not panicking despite a suspected bomb threat – this should be a beacon for the entire world.

“It shows that this audience is able to behave calmly and civilized while being kind and tolerant even in extraordinary and difficult situations.”

Lieberberg, managing director of

The same holds true for German rapper Marteria, who didn’t get to play on Friday. He returned on Saturday for a “60-minute power set of awesomeness,” as the artist himself announced on Facebook, before carrying on to play Rock am Ring’s twin festival Rock im Park that same night.

He might have become the first act to play both events within seven hours.

Lieberberg said the festival was a “demonstration of peace” after it resumed.

“It truly demonstrated the civilizing character of music. This music has always accompanied or been the frontrunner to society’s positive reform movements since the post-war period. This cannot be underestimated. Since the seventies in particular, music has been providing the soundtrack for our culture, the beat of time, and that hasn’t changed one bit.”

Lieberberg acknowledged, “We can brace ourselves for difficult times. What is important, in my opinion, is to have a discussion around defending liberal values. To view attacks on music events and their audience as attacks on our civilization and our way of life.

“All social forces, irrespective of nationality, origin, religion, world view, are called upon to unequivocally oppose such a threat. The times demand that we all position ourselves clearly and demonstrate that we are able to defend ourselves against all forms of violence and fanaticism.”

The promoter said the industry has adapted to the situation. “Security is paramount. We’re trying, through increased security measures, greater vigilance, body-checks, expansion of security checks from entrance to exit, spotting, profiling and employee registration.

“We’re making a huge contribution to safety, and we’re trying to make concerts safe for the artists and the audience, even under the most difficult of circumstances.

“The requirements for the authorities are considerable. They need to show armed presence at concerts. This is important, and we’ve achieved armed police at the entrances, to send a signal. “It shouldn’t be taken the wrong way if [persons that pose a threat to public safety] are taken off the streets at an earlier stage, rather than releasing them and later realizing that one acted too late.

“Safety has the highest priority for Live Nation and me personally. At the same time it is important that we do everything we can to maintain all the things an open society does.”