It’s that time of year again. Festival season is here! We’re super excited to get back in the fields, taking in some of the country’s best new and established artists.
Our calendar is already filling up, so we wanted to take a moment to let you know where you can find us this summer and take a deep dive into why we love UK festivals.
Festivals have been a key part of the ACC landscape for a long time. Since our first festival partnership, back in 2011, we’ve worked with some of the biggest industry names including Slam Dunk, Wild Paths, Latitude, Love Saves the Day, Download and more.
Working with festivals has so many benefits. From giving our students a platform to perform, and (for some) their first chance to showcase their artistry to a large audience, to offering exclusive, hands-on experience of what it takes to run an event of this size through our work experience programmes. The skills that our students learn from these events are invaluable, inspiring and set them up for success.
“Being selected to perform at Latitude Festival was a huge opportunity for me. Not only did I get to meet other incredibly talented ACC artists from the other colleges, I gained performance experience outside of my hometown. Being able to promote my involvement with the festival has given me content for my social media channels and has helped boost my portfolio.”
Jordan Phillips former AD4 Manchester student
Our festival partnerships are also valuable for the events we work with, and the wider industry. We’re lucky to be able to provide the festival industry with a constant flow of fresh talent, already equipped to take to the stage and put on a great show or muck in and help the team, bringing knowledge they’ve learned on our courses. The students that come through our doors today are the festival teams and acts of tomorrow, and that ecosystem is crucial to the future of the sector.
Which festivals will we be at?
Our involvement with festivals began as a partnership with the renowned, Suffolk-based Latitude Festival, and we are excited to announce that we’ll be partnering with them again this year (the 13th year running!)
We’ll be taking over The Inbetweeners stage again to showcase emerging talent. Previous performers such as Let’s Eat Grandma, Ed Sheeran, Mulally and Bessie Turner have progressed to the festival’s larger stages over the years, so we highly recommend stopping by.
Latitude hits Henham Park from 20th – 23rd July 2023.
The festival buzz is coming to Bristol
Bristol has a jam packed schedule this festival season and ACC students will be heading to the likes of Love Saves the Day, Forwards and Harbour Festival and Tokyo World to get involved behind the scenes as Artist Liaison, crew and so much more.
Charlie Grier, Marketing & Events Officer in Bristol has been heavily involved in festival initiatives in the city and as a long standing festival fiend, he knows a thing or two when it comes to providing the best work experience opportunities for our young people.
‘We really can’t wait to get festival season underway this year, we will all be back in a sunny field with good company and great music in no time.
At this time of year, we start to remember the tribal-like energy of crowds of people dancing, eating and camping together, the delicious food and drinks, and the performances & production that all combine to create a unique, exciting and unforgettable experience.
Festivals are more than just an opportunity to see your favourite artists perform live; they’re a chance to fully immerse yourself in the music and culture. The atmosphere creates a sense of community and connection between festival-goers, as we make new friends and lifelong memories.
Working with festivals in the local area is an excellent opportunity for students to gain valuable work experience. Not only do they get a chance to learn new skills and develop their professional networks, but they also get to be a part of the excitement and energy of these events. By collaborating with festivals, we can provide students with real-world experiences that are both fun and educational.
Festivals often require a large number of staff and volunteers, creating a diverse range of opportunities for students to get involved in areas such as event planning, marketing, production, logistics, hospitality and customer service. Such collaborations are mutually beneficial, as festivals get the necessary help, and students gain practical knowledge that can boost their career prospects.’
One of the Bristol students Charlie has helped is Cristy Taviner. The work she carried out across Bristol festivals has since seen her gain roles with Festival Republic!
‘During both my years at Access Creative College, I took part in lots of different activities outside of class hours organised by the college. My biggest memory is volunteering as part of the Artist Liaison Team at Love Saves the Day 2017.
It was my first major insight into the behind the scenes of how a festival is run. Working with the Artist Liaison team allowed me to understand what the artist would need when they came to site, I would be there to greet them, show them around, make sure their dressing room and rider was in place and up to scratch. Through this I was building up my problem-solving skills. I would ensure the stage manager was aware they were onsite and introduce them to the relevant people to ensure a smooth and successful running of the show.
Tokyo World 2019 was another day festival I volunteered at through ACC. I have since kept in contact with both of these businesses throughout the years, I still work as part of the Artist Liaison team for Tokyo World and have now moved on to working as part of the Artist Acred Team for Love Saves The Day & Forwards Festival; in 2022 I was the Artist Acred Assistant and this year I am the Artist Accreditation Manager.
Adding this all to my CV helped me gain roles as part of Festival Republic who I worked with for two seasons across Finsbury Park Events including Sam Fender, Community Festival and George Ezra and Reading Festival.’
New names for 2023!
We’ve also got some firsts this festival season.
In October, we’re attending Beyond The Music, a brand new music conference in Manchester. Founded by Oli Wilson, the son of Manchester legend Tony Wilson, Beyond the Music aims to create a global forum for the music industry. The event brings together the best in artists, creatives and professionals in tech, AV, gaming, brands, literature and music to build a “to solve the issues faced by the industry today and produce innovative models for the future”.
In August, we’ll also be making our debut at Green Man Festival in Wales.
Einstein’s Garden is Green Man’s area for creative engagement with science, nature and technology. Each year, the festival curates a line up fusing performance, art, music and research in wonderful and wacky ways.
Our students will be given the opportunity to apply to perform on the festival’s Solar Stage and also offered work experience in organisational roles. This is our first Welsh festival, and we can’t wait!
How we’ve helped students through our festivals initiative
We caught up with Norwich students, Immy and Juliet who have taken full advantage of getting involved with our festival initiatives having worked in voluntary roles with KISSTORY, Wild Paths and Latitude.
‘Since my involvement with KISSTORY in 2022, I’ve been having regular meetings to discuss what I’ve been up to in my events and music career which has led me to be part of the planning and the behind the scenes of KISSTORY 2023!’
‘Due to the involvement in ACC Norwich Festivals myself and my course friend Immy were given the opportunity to volunteer at Boomtown Festival. The role was a Site Mark Out Assistant. We arrived at the first week of the build to work directly with the Director and managers of Boomtown!
‘I have gained multiple opportunities through Access over the years but some key moments for me would be, landing an artist liaison role for KISSTORY Norwich in 2022. Myself and another student, Juliet, were lucky enough to work very closely with the event director and their team. Through this we have gained some incredible contacts and have been asked to work on 3 more of their events. London, Bristol and Norwich 2023!’
Quotes from Imogen Sawyer and Juliet Price, AD4 Norwich
Imogen has been so inspired by live events that she has founded her own company, MIDSUMMER which has held seven events thus far.
‘I’m working continuously behind the scenes on multiple projects. My next event is in HMV Norwich (22nd April) followed by another event at a venue called Voodoo Daddy’s Showroom on the 26th of April and an event in London next month at the Camden Club London on the 26th May.’
‘I’m also running a stage at Latitude this year along with a stage at the First Light Festival (In collaboration with ACC).’
‘So you can see the domino effect this has all had on my life. Access continues to support my goals and present to me any opportunities that come my way!’
‘ACC provided us with some incredible young talent to take part in a work experience initiative with KISSTORY in 2022. The level of ambition and initiative from the students was second to none and it’s clear to see how the college combines theory work with industry experience. I can see that the students will go onto huge things!’
Lee Warren, Events Director of Bauer Media
Bringing you the highlights
As always, our team will be heading down to the fields to bring you exclusive interviews, behind the scenes tours and other surprises (more to be revealed soon). If you see us at a festival, come and say hi!
And there’s still more announcements to come from this year’s festival season. Watch this space for more info very soon!
And that’s just the start!
We’ve got so much more planned. Make sure that you keep an eye on our socials and blog for all festival announcements!
Check out our full list of festival partners!