Report: Sziget Festival Budapest 2012

  • 16 Aug 2012 12:35 PM
Report: Sziget Festival Budapest 2012
On Monday morning the 20th Sziget Festival officially ended. Glastonbury’s founder, Michael Eavis was amongst the 379 thousand visitors, generously praising Sziget for being even more colourful than his own event. Besides celebrating the 20th edition, Sziget also welcomed its 6 millionth visitor this year.

Visitors from over 60 countries were gathering in Budapest for the last 8 days to create the magic society of the global town called Sziget. Fans were entertained by performers from 43 countries, once again underlining the fact that this event is probably the most international music festival out there. With 3 warm-up days and 5 regular days, the 20th Sziget was also reflecting on the fact that most of our foreign visitors take this as a festival-holiday and want to spend as many exciting days as possible with friends and fans.

„The total number of visitors is somewhat down compared to last year, however, in the current economic climate we didn’t really expect more. Sziget 2012 was both artistically and financially a clear success” – said Karoly Gerendai, Sziget founder and general manager.

Sziget is quickly becoming a role model for other events, so each year it hosts more and more professional guests from other festivals. In 2012 a total of 30 festivals – including Roskilde, EXIT or Paléo – sent their representatives to Sziget to learn about new ideas and innovations, which is truly an honour for the organizing team.

The biggest buzz was around Glastonbury’s Michael Eavis, the 76 years old legend of the live music industry, who spent a full 3 days at the event together with his wife. This was their first time at Sziget and they seemed to enjoy every bit of it, stating: „this is a fantastic festival, more colourful and probably a lot cleaner than Glastonbury”. All of the professional guests seemed to agree on the fact that the „Best European Major Festival Award” came to the right hands this year… and that’s Sziget.

Again a total of 60 program venues were waiting for visitors on the festival area and one thing is sure: this year even the well accomplished fans had to relearn the map. Besides the big stages, Sziget has always been strong in providing great non-musical program features. The complex Cultural Zone was one specialty of the event, while organizers also introduced the Sziget Eye giant wheel and the Olympic Fan Club to have some connection with the London games. The 20th event was surely something for the eyes, presenting visual installations, special light designs, giant wooden statues and almost anything an artistic mind could imagine.

Thanks to a new cooperation with YouTube, Sziget reached out to millions of fans who couldn’t make it to the island this year. The festival’s official YouTube channel broadcasted more than 50 concerts live from the 3 biggest stages, hoping to give a good taste of the Sziget feeling to all viewers.

The Sziget venue is already on its way towards a complete recovery, quickly returning to its role as a public park. Most of the program venues will be taken apart within the next 5 days, then it takes a further 3 weeks to clean the area and to remove the last signs of the event, before the grass-planting works can start.

The organizing team is proud and happy to see that the event is still beloved by fans, building an unmistakable and open-minded Sziget society that is simply impossible to create anywhere else.

Thanks a lot for this and see you in August 2013!

Source: Sziget Festival Budapest

Related article:

Sziget Festival 2012: 380,000 Visitors, 50% Not From Hungary

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