Fresh for­mat for Grampians fes­ti­val

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News - BY LOTTE REITER

An an­nual music fes­ti­val back­dropped by a 360-de­gree view of the iconic Grampians Na­tional Park will re­turn early next year with a new and im­proved for­mat.

Or­gan­is­ers of a fourth Grampians Music Fes­ti­val have an­nounced the Halls Gap event’s 2020 dates – Fe­bru­ary 28 and 29.

The ‘bou­tique music event’, known for its com­mu­nity at­mos­phere and pow­er­ful line-ups, has un­der­gone changes since wel­com­ing a crowd of 1000 fes­ti­val-go­ers this year.

Most no­tably, a new part­ner­ship with Halls Gap Car­a­van Park and the re­shap­ing of the pre­vi­ous three-day pro­gram into two days.

Fes­ti­val di­rec­tor Carly Flec­k­noe said or­gan­is­ers were al­ways look­ing to im­prove and rein­vig­o­rate the fes­ti­val to pre­vent it from be­com­ing stag­nant.

She said re­mov­ing the Sun­day pro­gram was a ‘per­fect ex­am­ple’.

“You al­ways learn from each fes­ti­val and the feed­back from pa­trons, and we’re al­ways tak­ing no­tice of what works and what doesn’t,” she said.

“Dump­ing the Sun­day is a per­fect ex­am­ple of that, be­cause a lot of peo­ple needed to head back home on that day, they couldn’t be there into the evening.

“So, in­stead of peo­ple miss­ing out on music, we’ve moved our line-up to be on just the Fri­day and Satur­day.

“It’s bet­ter for peo­ple to ac­cess music over the two days.” Ms Flec­k­noe said even with a changed for­mat, the keen­est of fes­ti­val go­ers could still ‘wind out the week­end’ with re­turn­ing Emerg­ing Artist Stages in Halls Gap on the Sun­day, as well as a fam­i­lyfriendly pool party at Halls Gap Pool.

She said or­gan­is­ers aimed to con­tinue the fes­ti­val’s in­clu­sive and fam­i­ly­fo­cused at­mos­phere.

“The big­gest feed­back we get is al­ways around the at­mos­phere and the fam­ily vibe, which is re­ally great to hear that peo­ple feel they can bring their chil­dren along,” she said.

“It’s not just an adults’ event or a chil­dren’s event, but some­thing for the whole fam­ily.

“It will be in­ter­est­ing to see what the growth is like this year. We’ve capped it at 1500, so there’s a chance to sell out tick­ets, which is re­ally ex­cit­ing.

“But we still want to stick to the at­mos­phere we’ve been cre­at­ing.”

Ms Flec­k­noe also an­nounced a fresh part­ner­ship with Halls Gap Car­a­van Park for 2020 fes­tiv­i­ties, of­fer­ing pun­ters a safe and close op­tion to stay ‘near the ac­tion’.

“It’s amaz­ing be­cause it is lit­er­ally three min­utes’ walk away, and has that added ben­e­fit of ex­tra fa­cil­i­ties like toi­lets and show­ers,” she said.

The fes­ti­val is also known to cham­pion re­gional pro­duce and bev­er­ages, and Ms Flec­k­noe said a ‘mix of food’ would be on the menu, in­clud­ing Turk­ish, Le­banese and Mex­i­can.

While the line-up is yet to be un­veiled, she said au­di­ences could ex­pect about 20 ‘phe­nom­e­nal’ bands and artists to hit the stage next sum­mer.

“The full line-up will be an­nounced in Novem­ber, and full-price tick­ets will go on sale then too,” she said.

“It feels sur­real. It seems only yes­ter­day we were plan­ning the first fes­ti­val and now we’re on to the fourth.”

Peo­ple can buy early­bird tick­ets on­line at www. grampians­mu­sicfes­ti­

BACK: Pun­ters at the Grampians Music Fes­ti­val, which will re­turn in Fe­bru­ary. Pic­ture: DEAN LAW­SON

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