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News The Time-Lapse of Festivals

18 August 2023 Holly Eckersley

Elton John’s incredible performance at the 2023 Glastonbury Festival was watched by a record 7.6 million people through the BBC’s live broadcast. This fantastic festival, which is now engrained in British culture, has been taking place since the 1970’s.

Festivals and concerts are an integral part of a rapidly growing and globally recognised £70 billion events industry in the UK. In 2019 1,000 festivals took place across the UK generating £1.76 billion GVA to the economy, showing that they are not only profitable businesses but incredibly important to communities, music lovers and makers. The Isle of Wight Festival, Reading and Leeds Festival and Glastonbury amongst many others, are known all over the world. However, many UK festivals vary in capacity, location and genre with community-led events and multi-day festivals proving popular all over the country.

Many people have used time-lapse to capture the set-up and de-rig of such events as-well as to document audiences enjoying performances. At Time-Lapse Systems we always enjoy seeing how others have used this media to document important events.

An image of festival-goers dancing in a crowd. Bright pink confetti billows down over head making it a jubilant scene.

Using a Canon 16- 35. 2 8f YouTube user Jonas Hofmann captured Rock am Ring, Hurricane Festival Parookaville and Highfield Festival. The video shows large crowds gathered around stages, vast tent pitches and the main gates into some of the festivals as-well as fly throughs showing the venues’ locations.

This YouTube video shows the set-up of the 2020 Glastonbury Festival and the tremendous task of making the site safe and comfortable for the expected 200,000 plus attendees. The video shows the careful construction of a stage over the course of several days, although it was unfortunately never enjoyed by audiences as the festival was cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. The elevated position of the camera gives a clear view of the site against the backdrop of the famous Glastonbury hills.

The 2019 Creamfields festival took place in Taipei Metropolitan Park in Taiwan. This video by Brine Inc shows the construction of various stages and seating areas, crowds gathering and dispersing as-well as fly-overs showing the full scale of the event. This electronic dance festival has been enjoyed since 1998 in the UK and now has many spin-offs all over the worlds including Brazil, Peru and Ibiza.

The Guardian has uploaded this time-lapse video of the Field Day Festival in Victoria Park in East London. The video shows the crowd wrapping around the main stage, then dispersing as-well as equipment being taken away. A number of bell tents are situated around the periphery of the field housing other stages, food stalls and equipment and a number of high-rise buildings can be seen in the distance showing the park’s urban location.

Festivals are enjoyed by millions of people all over the world as they bring communities together, an opportunity for people to spend time with loved ones whilst being able to enjoy fantastic music, food or the celebration of a hobby. It is the united shared immersive experience of being with others with similar interests to you that may be one of the contributing reasons as to why festivals continue to be extremely popular. The large crowds seen in the YouTube videos are testament to their enduring appeal.

Orange hued stage lights illuminate a festival-goer who is lifted onto the shoulders of a friend.

At Time-Lapse Systems we have documented a number of concerts and special events all over the UK, such as Pink performing at Alton Towers as-well as the park’s annual Oktoberfest. We have also captured the Christmas dressing of the Theatre Royal Drury Lane’s special Disney’s Frozen event in addition to the Nintendo Concert at Chessington World of Adventures Resort. We have worked at some truly spectacular venues, which have entertained thousands of people, such as The Royal Albert Hall, Hull’s Bonus Arena, Grange Park Opera, the Lyric Theatre, Odeon Leicester Square, Wimbledon, St Andrew’s Golf Course, Watford FC, Arsenal FC and the Commonwealth Games. We are incredibly proud to have been trusted to capture these incredible projects at such wonderful venues.

Royal Variety Performance 2012 at the Royal Albert Hall

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Time-Lapse Systems are a part of Hideaway Media Ltd (est. 2007). World leader in the provision of bespoke time-lapse capture and site monitoring solutions. UK and Worldwide.