The Secret World of Small Festivals – A Documentary

//The Secret World of Small Festivals – A Documentary

The Secret World of Small Festivals – A Documentary

330635_10152001617870230_2034393323_oThis is a guest blog from Sound Advice UK:

As most of us know, festivals in Briton are a huge part of our summers and every year more and more people are beginning to realise this. But many festivals seem to have lost the spirit from which they grew. The crowds, beer stands and large adverts can be overwhelming at the bigger events and in the middle of all this manic excitement you can find that the traditional union of people gets missed. But this is just the surface, beneath which there is a world that is not only preserving the spirit of festivals but developing and nurturing it.

Small festivals in the UK are booming, millions of people are choosing them over big festivals and bands are clamouring to play at them. We want to look into this widely unknown world in a documentary about small festivals, why we go to them, what their future holds and whether they have the potential for inspiring wide spread change

Small Festivals are an epicentre for skill-sharing, empowering positive action and re-imagining our culture more generally. Not to mention the simple gift of providing a safe and fun place to enjoy a long weekend. At a small festival we can meet our neighbours, create real connections with people and come away having really made new friends and having learnt things we can take home with us. On top of all that ‘peace and love’ you also discover the unsigned musical talent of an area.

This summer, funded by ‘The Koyaanisqatsi Trust’ ( ) we were invited to Cloud Cuckoo Land Festival ( to film the pilot for ‘The Secret World of Small Festivals’. We were greeted with great enthusiasm and a feeling from everyone that this was a story that needed to be told. On our journey through the festival we spoke to the people behind it, opening up the main themes of the documentary. The pilot is going to be ready in the next few weeks, but in the mean time you can watch the stop motion and Cloud Cuckoo Land promo we made while we were there.

616765_10152001537770230_415723516_oWe (Sound Advice UK ) were inspired to make the documentary after filming at a festival in Kent. We were supposed to just be filming bands on one of the two stages, but ended up talking to the organisers, sound men, volunteers and toilet managers. We started to realise that most small festival organisers don’t just want to put on a big party but have a much bigger, more political or social idea and these festivals are just a way of testing the waters. Beneath a weekend of hedonism there is in fact a wealth of thought, ideology and aspiration. This inspired us and opened our eyes, so we thought…why not let other people have the same experience we have. Also…we want to know more!

We have had phenomenal support from the festival community, not only from Cloud Cuckoo Land but also very kind words from Julies Bicycle, the Festival Awards, The Association of independent Festivals and of course A Greener Festival. All this support is invaluable and makes us even more excited to go on and make the film. However, we do also need some practical and financial help. We are looking for camera equipment, a van and also some financing to enable us to get this film made in 2013. If anyone out there has any ideas or would just like to get in touch for any reason at all, please do!

Any profit raised from this project will go towards the Cloud Cuckoo Land Permanent Festival site, we would use the money to provide a media and recording studio. We would also use it for running youth projects that could combine the media arts and outdoor activities. It would enable people to be creative and use modern technology in an unusual and environmentally friendly location.

Contact:(E)  (T) 020 7254 1668  (W)


By |2016-11-01T15:04:48+00:00January 20th, 2013|AGF Blog|