Relive Gorillaz on the mighty Lion's Den in the last installment of our Chapter 10 live video series. Joined by the legendary De La Soul for Feel Good Inc... xx
What is this Boomtown Springs thing you talk of?
There have been a few comments coming in from people who are a bit confused over the ‘Boomtown Springs’ area we’ve launched this year. The idea behind Boomtown Springs is a new theatrical campsite with added facilities and in camp entertainment and games provided by the fantastic Bearded Kitten crew. It’s an experimental idea that we’ve been working on releasing for a few years - something we felt was an exciting change to the classic ‘boutique’ format and created in reaction to those who were looking to spend a bit more for an extra special experience or who wanted to turn their festival into more of a holiday.
Understandably, those who have been following the festival and our unfolding storyline for the past few years feel that things have gone a little awry at Boomtown HQ… We’ve seen a few things like; How can you project anti capitalist undertones throughout the overarching narrative, promote the spirit of community, equality and values that make people feel this place is ours and ‘belongs to us’ and then put tickets on sale for an area that is only accessible for a few people at a much higher price…?
The answer is not easily… We’ll let you into some key behind the scenes truths that we don’t often like to worry anyone other than ourselves with… Putting on an independent festival in this day and age is immensely hard. Especially when dealing with Boomtown, which wouldn’t really be described as an average festival…
What’s so hard about it, it’s not brain surgery or negotiating world peace…?
Correct, we’re not pretending to save the world here, (we wish we could change it a bit though…) it’s just an elaborate party after all, but there are still many processes, people, politics and complex issues to overcome including legal, financial and social issues that we face head on, on a daily basis.
The model of Boomtown is so insanely complex and relies almost entirely on 100’s of our staff being excited and passionate year on year, and the development of ideas is paramount to the sustainability of the event. But with ever evolving plans comes ever increasing budgets and as one of the very last remaining truly independent festivals of our size in the UK, life as an ambitious crew can be pretty challenging.
But why Springs?
When we all agreed this was the best route to bring in the financial stability we needed, it was decided that rather than running just another VIP / hospitality / exclusive zone, we would add all the little perks that make fancy camping fancy, but do it in a proper Boomtown way; twist it up with theatre, make it intriguing and engaging and all round outrageous. Our main mission is to ensure that we offer value for money and that people can see where every penny they’ve invested in us is spent.
But what about the divisive ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ element to it all?
We just wanted to give people a bit more choice. The timing of standard tickets selling out has scuppered this a bit (but there’s still the limited resale!) However, there are many Boomtown folks who would prefer to pay extra for more facilities, and we are simply providing an option for that. This not only allows us to give a slightly different experience to those who would like it, but also allows us to invest more into the overall experience for EVERYONE.
We have been very careful that Boomtown Springs does not offer additional depth to the storyline of Boomtown, it is merely an offshoot, and will not in anyway take away from the general experience of theatre, walkabout, immersive and interactive elements across the rest of the festival.
So this isn’t all about the profit then?
Nope, this is not about profit, there is no fat cat sat at the top of a Boomtown bullion pile waiting for the Boomtown Springs loot to roll on in… we simply wouldn’t be here if that was what we stood for. This event costs a huge amount to put on in terms of operations, infrastructure, production, staffing etc… but we do this and love it because everything we live and work so hard for we genuinely believe in from the bottom of our hearts.
Boomtown Springs will help to ensure the event is successful in all the ways we want it to be by making sure the finances are in order. For that reason alone we can stand firm and proud for what and why we do what we do on this journey; a journey that we’d love to share with those who see the value in the world we create, and want to come and explore it with us.