Organizing a festival during the pandemic: 808 Festival, Rave Culture, ALDA & Rare
For this months edition of the We Rave You magazine, we investigated how 808 Festival was made to go ahead safely in December 2020 in Thailand, by speaking with those from Rave Culture, ALDA & Rare who were behind the events remarkable organisation.
For many of us, music festivals are a concept of the distant past, with cancellations and postponements becoming a familiar sight over the past 12 months. However, as the world is attempting to recover from the devastating impact of the coronavirus, different circumstances in different countries have presented some festival organisers with the opportunity to return that elusive sense of unity that fans have been craving, with new, large scale events.
With all that has happened within the music industry over the past year, we can imagine such a challenge was a welcome one for the likes of 808 Festival founder Arsit Prachaseri, ALDA CEO Allan Hardenberg, and Director of Rave Culture Group, Phillip Driessen. Their ambitious task – to put on a weekend dance music festival in Thailand, arrived as a seemingly logistical, health and safety nightmare.
808 Festival is renowned for being one of the biggest events hosted in Bangkok each year. With a strong reputation among the party-goers in the region, the fun-loving festival never disappoints as a celebration of all things dance music. The event organisers strive to bring in some of the scene’s most established talents, especially some of those who have never performed in Thailand before or for some time.
Following up a stellar show in December 2019 with highlight performances from the likes of Calvin Harris, Skrillex, Zedd and KSHMR, the 2020 edition of the event aimed to be no different than those before it. Cue the coronavirus pandemic however, and things started to look a little different for the festival’s hosts as it gave rise to a number of issues including attracting and safely accommodating international acts ahead of the proposed date of the event, December 11-12th.