Thrival Innovation + Music Festival Announces Return to Carrie Furnaces

September 29-30 for Live Outdoor Music Experience


Pittsburgh, PA – Celebrating its fifth year, Pittsburgh’s Thrival Innovation + Music Festival has announced its outdoor live music experience will take place September 29-30 at the Carrie Furnaces, a former blast furnace facility turned national historic site.

Retired in late 1970s and operated by the nonprofit, Rivers of Steel, the Carrie Furnaces are part and parcel to Pittsburgh’s industrial past; a narrative that Thrival is keen to preserve.

“We’ve turned the mill back on. It just functions differently,” says Dan Law, director of Thrival. “Instead of hearing shift whistles, you hear a bass line. It’s one way of telling Pittsburgh’s comeback story, but this demonstrates what is possible with imagination and creativity.”

Founded in 2013, Thrival is produced by Ascender, a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit that has grown the festival from community block party to a flagship regional event celebrating Pittsburgh’s resurgence as a fast-evolving tech and creative hub.

The entire festival runs September 27-30, with two days of immersive, innovation-focused programming preceding the music. More details on Thrival Innovation — including host sites, themes, and a new national partnership — will be released soon.

While Grammy Award-winning duo, The Chainsmokers, drew huge crowds to last year’s music portion, Law gives equal weight to both innovation and music, crediting both areas of the festival that broke attendance and sales records in 2016.

“Thrival crosses a lot of genres and disciplines. It’s part innovation conference, part concert. In all, the festival is a holistic experience,” says Law.

To help manage this growth in 2017, Thrival has partnered with Live Nation Entertainment for venue operations, talent buying , and marketing efforts.

“Ascender’s partnership with Live Nation to deliver Thrival Music allows our core team to both invest more energy in scaling Thrival Innovation and more effectively engage our dynamic local audience, with Live Nation adding significantly to the festival’s expanding national reach. We’re very excited for the opportunities this presents,” says Bobby Zappala, founder of Thrival and CEO of Ascender.

Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, Live Nation Advertising & Sponsorship and Artist Nation Management.

For more information, visit Follow Thrival on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. To learn more about Ascender and its mission, visit For additional information on Live Nation, visit Full artist full line up to be announced soon.