Glastonbury Festival - The Madness

Glastonbury Travel Blog

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Off to see the sights...
With a line-up such as The Futureheads, Echo and the Bunnymen, Interpol, New Order and Coldplay on my agenda, I was prepared to give up seeing some of the newer acts in favour of visiting some of the far flung areas of the site.  

I made my way through the Dance Village, home to four stages catering to all sorts of electronica and dance music. It was lined with smaller tents, flags and other such décor. Unfortunately, the overcast sky muted most of the colours. But the vibrancy remained all throughout Glastonbury. I strolled along, passing a wealth of attractions. There was the Pussy Parlure, a 1920s-inspired wooden burlesque-type theatre venue for late-night entertainment - karaoke, pop quizzes, floor games, and of course, music, all in Glasto-fashion.
The Other Stage
To the far-off east of the Other Stage was The Glade, bedecked by installation art supplemented by electronic music where people chilled out for hours.  

Up ahead lay the Green Fields - The Greenpeace Field, The Kids Area, The Craft Field and more - the south side area of Glastonbury that caters to all things in harmony with nature. More than promoting youth culture, the Glastonbury Festival also staunchly supports humanitarian causes such as Greenpeace, Oxfam, Water Aid, and this year, Make Poverty History (Britain’s banner under the Global Call to Action Against Poverty campaign).
The Levellers at the Jazz World Stage
It is in this area where both young and old can learn about campaigns for ecological change, fair trade and politics, and take part in activities that help spread awareness of mother nature’s plight. Plus, there’s also music, poetry, astrology and other things that help promote world peace and alternative ideas for sustainable living.

Atop the Green Fields is the King’s Meadow, where the best view of the festival site can be seen. Steeped in mythology, tradition and religious traditions, this area is also referred to as the “Sacred Space.” It is here where the Stone Circle sits, where every year, thousands of festival-goers watch the Glastonbury sunrise.

Unfortunately, I only had time to do a brisk walk-through. Almost as soon as I reached the top, I had to head back to the British Council booth. But no matter, as the trek down was another story on its own.
Riding cows is fun!
Taking a different route this time, I had the chance to walk past the Jazzworld Stage, where The Levellers were playing at the time. Still entrenched in mud, people continued to dance and make merry while a good number of festival folk dressed in their bizarre best for the day as vampires, fairies and even animals. If seeing Brandon Flowers in the flesh was eye candy, then these were like a tour of Willy Wonka’s factory.

I had a couple of minutes to grab a late lunch before making my way back to the British Council booth, where a BBC Radio production crew was scheduled to interview music promoters from Macedonia, Morocco and myself, representing the Philippines. I think the crew was just as thrilled to learn varying opinions from three foreigners as much as we were to have had such a grand opportunity. It was around 4.
The Futureheads with "Hounds of Love," a classic Kate Bush original
30pm when the interview ended and I was sure I missed the planned human chain for the Make Poverty History campaign. It was only much later on that I discovered, not only had I failed to attend the event, but I had completely also missed Bob Geldof.  Oh well, a human link for a BBC interview seems like fair trade to me.

The latter half of my day was more organized this time. The Futureheads, Echo and the Bunnymen and Interpol were playing consecutively at the Other Stage, while New Order and Coldplay were performing after by the Pyramid Stage. And what performances they all gave. Younger bands The Futureheads and Interpol rocked like they’d been doing it for years, while Echo and the Bunnymen and New Order proved they can still rock after 2 decades. New Order vocalist Bernard Sumner even managed to draw some tears from the crowd as he dedicated Transmission to their late Joy Division’s vocalist, Ian Curtis and then again with “Love Will Tear Us Apart” for the beloved John Peel.
Echo & the Bunnymen
Moments like that will never be forgotten.

If New Order and the other bands had their bits, Coldplay was one enormous Glastonbury moment. From their setlist to Chris Martin’s retorts, the mid-song tribute to John Peel (almost every band had one for him) to the unexpected “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” tribute cover, lyric-changing to the pyrotechnics, Coldplay sent the crowd over the moon. With an audience of over 100,000 people and the mud clinging to your wellies, it was impossible to dance. There was no choice but to leave that to your toes and eyebrows. But it was the moment they played “Speed of Sound” that had the most impact on me from the entire Glastonbury experience.  It validated the trials and perseverance in the recent past, disjointed as they seem, that lead to the achievements I have made.
Interpol
And this was my reward - right here, in the middle a field, together with over 100,000 others, watching one of the best bands in the world play. Tears and manic laughter immediately overtook me. The moment was just so overpowering and intense, I can’t imagine any other moment eclipsing this one for a very long time.

My shoulders ached, my bones were exhausted and my ankle was blistered and I still couldn’t believe two-thirds of the weekend was over. It was playing out all too quickly.



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Off to see the sights...
Off to see the sights...
The Other Stage
The Other Stage
The Levellers at the Jazz World St…
The Levellers at the Jazz World S…
Riding cows is fun!
Riding cows is fun!
The Futureheads with "Hounds of L…
Echo & the Bunnymen
Echo & the Bunnymen
Interpol
Interpol
The Green Fields
The Green Fields
The Pussy Parlure
The Pussy Parlure
Glasto flags
Glasto flags
The Dance Village
The Dance Village
Avoiding the mud
Avoiding the mud
Heading towards...
Heading towards...
The Healing Field
The Healing Field
My personal space invader...
My personal space invader...
...And hes for real!
...And he's for real!
Wellie sculpture
Wellie sculpture
Finally at the Kings Meadow
Finally at the King's Meadow
...And the Craft Field
...And the Craft Field
The Green Fields
The Green Fields
Halloween in June
Halloween in June
And whats she supposed to be?
And what's she supposed to be?
Couldnt find a date, eh?
Couldn't find a date, eh?
BBC Radio interview with Mark Coles
BBC Radio interview with Mark Coles
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
The Futureheads
Echo & the Bunnymen
Echo & the Bunnymen
Interpol
Interpol
Interpol
Interpol
Huy! Bawal ehe, potol tete!!
Huy! Bawal ehe, potol tete!!
Paks yu!
Paks yu!
Ubiquitous flags
Ubiquitous flags
New Order
New Order
Can you find me in the crowd?
Can you find me in the crowd?
New Order
New Order
Glastonbury twillight
Glastonbury twillight
A fraction of the 120K Coldplay au…
A fraction of the 120K Coldplay a…
Coldplay
Coldplay
Make Poverty History bus
Make Poverty History bus
Glastonbury
photo by: Vikram