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World-Famous Sziget Festival Kicked Off Yesterday – Join Us on the Island of Freedom!

Fanni Kaszás 2018.08.09.

The world-famous Sziget Festival kicked off yesterday in Budapest, and tens of thousands of visitors arrived at the Island of Freedom to listen to Clean Bandit, Stormzy, Lykke Li and Kendrick Lamar on the first day of the festival.

The 26th Sziget Festival is held between August 8 and 15 on Hajógyári Island. With last year’s record number of 496,000 visitors, organizers are expecting to attract around 500,000 people throughout the seven days of the festival.

photo: Sziget Festival Official Facebook

About 20,000 of the visitors will be UK citizens, outnumbering the Dutch for the first time in several years. In an interview with Index, Virág Csiszár, the booking manager of Sziget Festival, stated that most of the visitors are from the UK this year – possibly because Glastonbury, the biggest festival in the country, took a ‘fallow year’ and hasn’t returned this summer. In fact, most of the professionals from Britain compare Sziget with its famous British counterpart.

photo: Sándor Csudai / Sziget Festival Official Facebook

Csiszár also talked about the performers as well; she remarked that they have noticed the increase in prices every year. In some cases, it is well above 10 percent – which she believes is understandable as many performers aim to get the most out of their careers while still considered popular. She also talked about the booking process: every year, organizers ask visitors which bands they want to see perform next year, then compare with statistics, take into account their popularity at western festivals, measure the expected audiences and later compile a short list of potential performers.

She went on to say that they have to make sure to have a strong headliner every day, as they have to sell 20-25 thousand daily tickets. If one day is sold out then it’s often not a problem if one or two other days are less popular. For example, Shawn Mendes is expected to sell out given he only has three concerts scheduled in Europe.

A few of the staff members at Hungary Today have the opportunity to spend the week at the Island of Freedom and will be able to provide you with a taste of Sziget. From the music world’s biggest names, festival foods, incredible dance performances, acts, cultural programs to Brits covered in glitter and dressed as minions or unicorns, we will be reporting it all. Don’t miss out on all the fun; make sure to check in every day to enjoy spectacular photos and descriptions from one of Europe’s biggest festivals.

Máté Bodorkós – Rockstar Photographers / Sziget Festival Official Facebook

Yesterday’s headliner, Grammy-winning rapper Kendrick Lamar, was a bit disappointing because he started his performance 40 minutes late due to technical difficulties – according to Sziget organizers, it was the rapper’s audio system that caused the delay. Performing before Lamar, Lykke Li’s show ended sooner than expected, leaving one and a half hours between the two performances. As concerts on the main stage have to be over by 11 pm, the show only lasted around 50 minutes.

However, the festival continues until the 14th of August with headliners such as Lana Del Rey, queen of melancholic songs; British indie rock band Arctic Monkeys; five-time Brit Awards nominee Dua Lipa; British virtual band Gorillaz; Norwegian DJ Kygo and the London based folk-rock band Mumford and Sons.

via MTI, index.hu

featured photo: Máté Bodorkós – Rockstar Photographers

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