New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

2024’s Gov Ball takes New Yorkers by storm

Post Malone, The Killers and SZA were this year’s headliners at the Governors Ball Music Festival, which took place in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.
Jason Alpert-Wisnia
Post Malone (Jason Alpert-Wisnia for WSN)

The Governors Ball Music Festival welcomed nearly 150,000 people to Queens’ Flushing Meadows Corona Park this past weekend, featuring the star-studded headliners Post Malone, The Killers and SZA. 

“It’s one of the best days of my fucking life,” Saturday opener and Berklee student Kidd Revel told WSN. “It was amazing. The crowd’s energy was there.” His co-performer, Maz, agreed. “It’s a community — really, that’s what it is, and I’m so grateful to be in New York.” 

New Yorkers of all ages and music tastes slowly filled the park, with each festival day packed with performers over three stages from noon to 10 p.m. Some were sprinting to make the barrier, prepared to wait hours for their favorite headliner, while others strolled  with a cocktail in a pineapple. Performers like Yung Gravy, Dominic Fike and Teezo Touchdown lit the crowd up before headliner Post Malone took the stage Friday.

“It’s a different level of energy,” Teezo Touchdown said in an interview with WSN before his set on Friday. “I’ve been in the zeitgeist for like three years, so I spent a lot of time trying to go for this. I’m just present in the moment.” 

“I’m here to play some shitty songs and get a little bit fucked up while we do it,” Post Malone said during the beginning of the show before playing hits from his albums “Stoney” and “beerbongs & bentleys.” He happily bounced, stripped and two-stepped his way across the stage before closing out the encore with “I Had Some Help” and “Chemical” from 2023’s “Austin.” 

Saturday’s lineup featured two former V100 performers, Doechii and 21 Savage. Doechii strutted onto the stage with cat-eye contacts, cotton leg warmers and a white crop top as DJ Miss Milan played her iconic producer tag, sending concertgoers into a frenzy. She performed hits like “Persuasive” and “Yucky Black Fruitcake” while also acknowledging the LGBTQ+ community’s impact on contemporary fashion and music. 

Other Saturday performers included P1Harmony, the festival’s first male K-pop act, and Sabrina Carpenter. Carpenter’s set was particularly energetic, as her newest single “Please Please Please” was performed live for the first time since its release on June 7. Following her trend of changing the lyrics to the outro of her song “Nonsense,” she sang “Do I text him back it’s such a tough call / That won’t fit inside me bro I’m dumb small / People who hate pride can suck my Gov balls.” The Killers finished Saturday with an electric set, playing hits like “Mr. Brightside” and “Somebody Told Me.” 

“We love New York. Every time we’re here, it feels electric,” Danny Davis, a member of Oklahoma indie rock band Husbands, said. “It feels less like a job this time and more just enjoying music.” 

On Sunday the field was packed with sequins and sparkles, while performers Chappell Roan and Reneé Rapp took the main stage before headliner SZA closed out the weekend. Fans were dressed to impress in pink feathery cowboy hats and SZA hockey jersey merchandise while cheering on opening acts. 

Chappell Roan dressed in full drag as the Statue of Liberty, emerging in a giant red apple and smoking a blunt. In the middle of her set, she read aloud the famous quote engraved at the base of the statue, “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.” She added “It means freedom for trans rights, it means freedom for women’s rights and it especially means freedom for all oppressed people in occupied territories.” She sang her hits like “Good Luck Babe!” and “Hot To Go” along with an unreleased single, “Subway.”

Elyanna, a Palestinian Chilean pop artist, also took to the main stage. She featured an image displaying the text, “All Eyes on Rafah,” on the screen alluding to the war in Gaza, after dedicating an Arabic song to her home country. Peso Puma and SZA both packed crowds in for the last two sets of the night, with Mexican flags waving for Puma and handwritten Sharpie signs for SZA. 

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Jason Alpert-Wisnia contributed reporting. 

Contact Julia Diorio at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Julia Diorio
Julia Diorio, Music Editor
Julia Diorio is a sophomore studying journalism at CAS. When not reminiscing about 2000s pop-punk music, she can normally be found drinking copious amounts of Dunkin' iced coffee, curating hyper-specific Spotify playlists or struggling with the NYT crossword. Find her variations of all-black outfits and dog pictures on Instagram @juliadiorio_. Send song suggestions to [email protected].
Jason Alpert-Wisnia
Jason Alpert-Wisnia, Editor-at-Large
Jason Alpert-Wisnia is a junior majoring in Photography and Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts, primarily focused on photojournalism and documentary photography. His photography ranges from coverage of professional sports, to political protests and music festivals. When he is not pounding the pavement with a camera in his hands looking for the next story, you are likely to find Jason in a used bookstore looking for rare finds or in the park reading. You can find him on Instagram @jasonalpertwisnia and contact him at [email protected].

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