Photo credit: Harry Metal

Wacken Open Air 2022 is history – first batch of bands confirmed for 2023

Author Arto Mäenpää - 7.8.2022

The 31. Wacken Open Air is in the books. At the world’s biggest metal festival, 83.400 fans witnessed spectacular shows by Judas Priest, Slipknot and Powerwolf. In total, more than 200 bands rocked nine stages, Sweden’s Amon Amarth even played an unannounced secret concert right underneath the famous Wacken skull.

The joy of finally being able to experience live music and a multi-faceted open air event with like-minded people from all over the world could be felt everywhere. Festival promoters Holger Hübner and Thomas Jensen commented: „The Wacken Open Air is back – finally! We missed the festival as much as the fans did. Now we’re very much looking forward to next year’s edition, which will offer four full days of live concerts for the first time. Tickets go on sale this Sunday evening.

At a press conference held during the afternoon, police, fire department and emergency medical services as well as the local regulatory authority looked back on an exceptionally peaceful and trouble-free event. The number of occurrences in their respective fields all stayed below of those from 2019. For example, the number of times the fire brigade had to jump into action only was in the lower double digits, the number of cases for the police dropped by 60 percent.

Bands confirmed for 2023, four days of live music for the first time

A first glimpse of next year’s billing was announced on the main stages during the night. W:O:A 2023 will take place Aug 2-5, making it the first time the festival officially boasts four days of live music.

Headlining the event will be the mighty Iron Maiden: There is not a single metalhead that doesn’t know them. And it’s hard to think of a band that has defined classic heavy metal as much as they have. So consequently, there might very well be no band that is a better fit for the „holy ground of metal“. So in 2023, Iron Maiden will return to headline at the Wacken Open Air for the fourth time! So get ready for impressive production, a passionate performance, amazing music and of course Eddie! It has been seven long years since those iconic words have been heard: „Scream for me, Wacken!“

Also announced have been Megadeth from the USA, who are considered worldwide as originators of thrash metal and being part of the „Big 4“ of the genre. Also playing will be Irish-American folk-punks Dropkick Murphys and Jinjer from the Ukraine, one of the hottest bands in modern metal today. Two Steps From Hell, a duo from Los Angeles, have amassed millions of followers with their brand of „epic music“, used in thousands of movies, trailers, series, spots and games, turning them into the biggest in their field. At the W:O:A, their first festival ever and only festival in Europe in 2023, they will perform a special and unique Wacken set. Fans can look forward to doom pioneers Pentagram and their „50th Anniversary Show“, while death metallers Deicide will celebrate their genre shaping sophomore album „Legion“ with a special show as well. More announcements are: Wardruna (atmospheric nordic folk), Beartooth (hardcore), Ensiferum (viking metal), Nervosa (thrash), and Burning Witches (heavy metal). More bands to be follow

Viking culture as overall theme

In 2023, there will be once again a theme running through the whole festival: vikings and their culture. This will manifest itself in the overall appearance of the W:O:A as well performances and additional content all over the festival site.

Pre-sale starts Sunday

Tickets for Wacken Open Air 2023 will go on sale Sunday, Aug 7, at 8 pm at Fast-Tickets are sold with an exclusive special shirt, but are limited to 10.000 units. As soon as they are gone, Hard-Tickets go on sale. Pre-sale details can be found at and, starting Sunday, at

Metalheads that move fast could even get their hands on a real Harley Davidson motorcycle! Everybody purchasing a W:O:A ticket within the first 24 hours of the pre-sale starting is automatically entered eligible to win the this totally unique bike which has been customized with a high-class W:O:A paint job.

Wacken Open Air 2023
August, 2-5, 2023

Ticket pre-sale starts Sunday, Aug 7 at 8 pm only at

Bands confirmed for 2023: Iron Maiden, Megadeth, Dropkick Murphys, Wardruna, Beartooth, Ensiferum, Pentagram (50th Anniversary Show), Jinjer, Nervosa, Deicide (Special Legion Show), Burning Witches, Two Steps From Hell (exclusive Wacken Show)

See you in Wacken. Rain or shine.