Earth Frequency Festival has long been a strong community focused on music, arts, lifestyle and environment. What started out as a small landcare party has grown into one of Australia’s most transformational gatherings. Next year’s lineup features Beardyman, The Herd, Ace Ventura, Opiuo, Marcus Henriksson aka Son Kite, Desert Dwellers and Kingfisha, amongst dozens of others, plus there are workshops, performances, live arts, kids activities, markets and food over four massive days.
Festival Director Paul Abad chatted to Samantha Morris about the event’s twelfth anniversary, starting with the biggest lessons he’s learnt.
“Looking back I think the ideas and lessons that have helped me the most would be to grow one step at a time year by year,” Paul said, adding that for any festival to have lasting value it needs to take an inclusive, community-focused approach and to be about connections formed as much as the entertainment on offer.
“I think the 2017 lineup is our strongest to date,” he said. It’s the first time the festival has booked artists like The Herd, Ace Ventura, Beardyman and Marcus Henriksson.
But at the same time festival favourites like Opiuo, Desert Dwellers and Spoonbill will return. As well as a diverse music lineup, Earth Frequency Festival also places a big emphasis on family.
“I love the fact that many families attend each year and that the age range of the festival audience is so broad,” Paul told Blank Gold Coast.
“As usual we will have the Family Realm and Parenting Place offering workshops, entertainment and activities for kids and their families including kids yoga, magic shows, circus, art workshops and more.”
The event had a challenging year in 2016 with tighter council conditions as a result of what can only be described as a smear campaign from a small number of local area objectors. But Paul says there is good news on that front.
“Months of work have resulted in a more practical noise monitoring methodology and better sound levels for the upcoming edition,” he said.
“As we close the big stages at midnight, we’re looking at a range of options to keep the good vibes flowing – the art gallery will be open, we will have late night food stalls and markets, a few ‘after hours’ small music venues and some great new ideas coming through including a game show in the workshop village which I really hope comes to fruition.”
“I’d just like to express immense gratitude to everyone who supports Earth Frequency in any way – working, volunteering, performing or coming along to party. It’s been an incredible journey to go on and a constant source of inspiration and happiness for me,” Paul said.
The Twelfth edition of Earth Frequency Festival takes place at Ivory’s Rock from 17 – 20 February. Details at earthfrequency.com.au.