Officially, the festival was “revolutionary,” “progressive” and “a remarkable first”. Picture: mdlbeast/Instagram

On social media accounts of the followed and famous, the MDL Beast music festival was a rave true to form: fluorescent face paint, flashing lights and a star-studded lineup of DJs that spun dance music into the wee hours.

Officially, the festival was “revolutionary,” “progressive” and “a remarkable first” – superlatives many of its influencer-attendees reiterated in posts seen by millions of followers on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat during the three-day concert that concluded on Saturday.

What didn’t make it into their captions and tweets, however, was any reference to reports that document the human rights abuses of the festival’s host, the government of Saudi Arabia.

The event – along with the stars who were invited and possibly to attend – was organised by the kingdom’s entertainment authority and is part of its sweeping public relations strategy to showcase its cultural change.