The Woodstock of the east, Europe’s grand 8-day island festival, Sziget 2015 began on the 10th of this month. Here’s everything you need to know about this Hungarian mega-event.
Every year, during the month of August, the tourist-attracting island city of Budapest adopts a carnival-like atmosphere for Sziget, one of Europe’s largest open-air events. The festival, a combination of music, art, exhibitions, theatre and circus has people come in from all over the world thriving in the festival’s made-up city space.
The island that finds itself in the middle of Hungary’s Danube river makes the festival an all-in-one inclusive affair. There’s the water facing front, the best of local and international music talent, artists from around the world exhibitioning their work, dress-up shows, and a 8-day celebration. The Sherp rounds up all the reasons that make the 2015 affair worth it!
‘Nough said. The island city of Budapest is not just the capital city of Hungary, but ostensibly, the most beautiful. The city, with its perfect balanced approach between the old and new, embraces contemporary lifestyle, with one foot firmly set in its age-old history. A trip to Sziget not just affirms a brilliant festival experience, but also gives you a taste of the Hungarian life. For a traveller, Sziget makes for the perfect musical event to be at, as travel, history and art join hands to put together a perfect collaboration.
Let’s talk Freedom
The term ‘Island of Freedom’ holds great sentimental value for Sziget, almost becoming an emotion synonymous with the festival itself. And one of the most notable world champions for freedom is the Russian punk rock group, Pussy Riot. A band that features about 11 women, it is most well known for their unusual performances in public locations, which are then recorded as music videos. The group is known for their opposition to Russia’s Vladimir Putin, and their call for ending oppression, for freedom.
Two members of this cult group, Nadya and Masha will be at Sziget 2015 to deliver a talk on freedom. The Sherp really admires that the festival is taking a conversational approach to its theme!
The self-sufficient fest space
The festival space of Sziget is large, and spread out to cover almost every aspect that a festival deems important, thereby making it unnecessary for any festival attendee to want to hop out for anything else. The entire arena is demarcated into various spaces of recreation, music and activity, so you can be rest assured that no time spent within the premises asks for boredom. Sziget’s multiple events will keep you occupied enough.
The 2015 music
Sziget is well known for bringing in a solid set of local and international musicians from across the spectrum – featuring mainstream, commercial artists and lesser known acts from jazz, classical and blues, the festival doesn’t hold back on its musical deliverance. This year too, led by Robbie Williams, the festival features some sizeable names like Kings of Leon, 2015 festival regulars Florence + The Machine, Ellie Goulding, Alt – J, The Script, Major Lazer, Foals and Paloma Faith, to name a few. This, along with some notable names from independent music circuit.
The festival is also commended for its huge performance spaces, which, along the river give it a grandness, unlike any other festival in Europe.
Every year, Sziget invites artists from around the world to display their art, either as installations or as part of the many exhibitions held within the festival. The installations, themselves amalgamate themselves into festival architecture, lending Sziget a colourful, arty makeover. These installations become part of the various lounge stations around the festival.
The general vibe of the festival reflects the best of summer as we know it. There is ample amounts of playfulness, as everyone engages in a bunch of activities that the festival plays host to. The festival makes sure to be one for everyone – there’s place to relax, play board games, engage in dress-up circus shows, and listen to ample amounts of music.