With the festival season now in full swing, we thought we'd share our tips on this year's selection.
After a surge of new festivals launched in the UK in the last two years, the market for new entrants seems to have slowed in no small part due to the fierce competition festivals now face. It's been our opinion for a while that a festival needs a unique feature to survive and attract a captive audience. The immeasurable success of the Rewind 80's festivals' is due to the commitment to sticking to all things, well, 80's. Likewise Field Day has endured 10 great years by staying true to its values of new music and independence, and Boardmasters to its intrinsic link to surfing and the surfing community. And we're not biased at all towards the festivals that we work with of course...!
As the price to attend festivals has crept up over the years, attendees now rightfully demand an unforgettable experience and that's so far followed theatre's trend in being increasingly 'immersive'. Whilst Bestival and Secret Garden Party have always led the way in thematic festival experiences, newcomers such as Lost Village are taking that one step further by inviting attendees to join a 'tribe' for the weekend. This is even more important as UK festivals battle with cheap flights to overseas events such as the new Love International Croatia, Sziget or Exit that have the immediate benefit of beaches, islands or even an abandoned fortress as a backdrop.
Artist curated festivals are seeing a surge in popularity with Madness's House of Common and Nile Rodgers’ FOLD both launching in London this summer. It's a great way for artists to engage with their fans and fans can feel assured that the festival will be to their taste.
Audiences are also veering towards the more intimate festivals such as Gottwood and Farr, that long ago realised the appeal of a small event and now promise to stay small. There are of course exceptions to this rule, such as festival heavyweights SW4, Glastonbury or if you've got Rihanna and Bieber on the line-up!
All of these trends create more challenges for promoters; how do you balance the books whilst creating an immersive experience with a small audience and, of course, a great line-up. This is something that we see a lot in our advisory arm and we like to take on the challenge of steering the boat on the finance side whilst we let our festival partners curate the best festival that they can.
If you want to discuss anything festival with us, then please get in touch. Otherwise - we'll see you at the main stage.
The Edition Team