The Coachella is an annual music and arts festival held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio (map), California, in the Coachella Valley.
The event features musical artists from many genres of music, including rock, pop, indie, hip hop and electronic dance music, as well as art installations and sculptures. Across the grounds, several stages continuously host live music.
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Coachella celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2019. On April 10, 2020, a documentary profiling the festival’s 20-year history, Coachella: 20 Years in the Desert, was released on YouTube to coincide with the original start date of the 2020 event. The pandemic further resulted in the cancellation of the 2021 festival.
The festival is hosted at the 78-acre Empire Polo Club (map); when accounting for land used for parking and camping, the event covers a footprint of approximately 642 acres. The site is about 125 miles east of Los Angeles.
In addition to hosting live music, Coachella is a showcase for visual arts, including installation art and sculpture. Many of the pieces are interactive, providing a visual treat for attendees. Throughout the years, the art has grown in scale and outrageousness.
Artists are given access to the grounds just 10 days before the festival, giving them a tight timeframe in which to assemble their pieces. Due to the high cost of re-assembly, only about half of them appear again outside of Coachella. Describing the festival’s importance to art, Cynthia Washburn of art collective Poetic Kinetics said, “With all the exposure here, I think Coachella is becoming as attractive for artists as it is for the musicians.”
Indio is the nearest bus stop or station location for multiple long distance bus lines to Palm Springs. The buses typically connect Palm Springs/Indio with Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Tucson and Calexico/Mexicali.