Earthdance Festival 2016: 20th Anniversary

Earthdance is a festival that works around the international Day of Peace which is on the 21st of September, their promoters create awareness all around the world working hard to make the event a success. The theme for their anniversary was called a ‘Global Shift’, which meant that the event would happen globally and somehow they would try and connect us all which was achieved through the prayer for peace. They made the festival extra special by turning it back into a three-day adventure.

The event consisted of 2 stages, the main stage which would play the Psychedelic- Trance and then the second stage would play Techno music. They also had a yoga session planned and we were involved in a Prayer for Peace which happened around 2 a.m. the Sunday morning/ Saturday evening. It all happened at the Nekkies resort in Worcester, the venue included a river and pool for swimming, clean toilets which had showers, lots of chill areas, a massive camping site, stalls that sold clothes, food and jewelry and showcases of different artwork of artists all around the world.

The stage setup before the big day. Photocredit: Earthdance team

 

The final setup, Everyone dancing. Photo credit: RoAlex photography

The line up included djs who were local and international,
The Psy-trance stage:

12:00 OPENING CEREMONY

12:30 SADHU SENSI

14:00 JOSH MAC

15:30 THE COMMERCIAL HIPPIES

17:00 RENEGADE

18:30 DYNAMIC RANGE

20:00 SILO

21:30 REGAN

23:00 BERNZ

00:30 SOUTHWILD

02:00 PRAYER FOR PEACE

02:10 EMP

03:30 HIGH STYLE

05:00 ARCHIVE VS MYSTRIX

07:00 SWITCHCACHE

08:30 BRUCE

10:00 MARTIAN ARTS

11:30 DALA

13:00 HEADROOM

14:30 BROKEN TOY

16:00 – END
The techno stage:

FRIDAY
16:00 ALLAN M

18:00 JAN

20:00 JONO J

22:00 G-WOK

00:00 WESSELS

02:00 STASH

04:00 CRUSHHARDER

SATURDAY
10:00 THE GREAT VERONI

12:30 LADY M

14:00 SIDES

15:30 BLACK BOOK

17:00 TOBY 2 SHOES

18:30 IVAN TURANJANIN

20:00 STAB VIRUS

21:30 DANALOG

23:00 ARTELLIGENT

00:30 B_TYPE

02:00 KYLE RUSSOUW

SUNDAY
07:00 DESKTOP DESKTOP

09:00 SEBASTIANO ZANASI

10:30 SPEKTA

12:30 MEY

14:30 COMMONWEALTHY

My friends and I arrived the Friday evening at 9p.m as we left around 6.p.m and it was a long drive especially getting up through the traffic. As we arrived, the atmosphere was filled with excitement as people greeted one another and everyone wanted to get set up so that they could make their way to the dance floor. We managed to set up our tents in the dark and got the chance to get to know one another better as this was the first time we actually got to meet each other than texting on WhatsApp. No sleep was achieved during all three days of the festival because the music was just that great, there were no issues with the sound and none of the stages were over-powering each other.

Some members of the tribe. From left to right: Carly, Myself, Che, Louis, Andre and Kai

 

The Saturday morning, I was sitting in another group of individuals that also couldn’t sleep and we watched the sunrise together.  My friend, Carly Williams found me and we headed off to the showers and once done freshening up we got coffee for our tribe/group of friends. The tribe was very excited for the Saturday evening as we wanted to hear the international DJ Southwild to play, we were all fans of the dark Psychedelic Trance.

Noel, a friend I made the Saturday morning in the circle. Photocredit: @psykedinthecity

 

Once the evening approached, we all went on our different journeys but I’m greatful for my friend’s Che Cloete and Louis Mulder for sticking by my side. Around 2 a.m., the Prayer for peace was upon us and we marched across the campsite with flags. Hundreds of people walking and making our way back to the dance floor where we all meditated and connected with our other fellow troopers on other parts of the world.

The music continued and before we knew it, the Sunday which was the last day had arrived. We were up early, got breakfast and took a blanket and pillows to the dance floor as we planned to stay there all day.

We all were on our feet dancing. It was extremely hot. So hot, that the fire brigade pitched up and threw everyone on the dance floor with water. The Sunday more people had arrived and most of everyone was excited to hear their 2 favourite local acts Adam Macalfe known as Headroom and James Copeland known Broken Toy. I was lucky enough to score an interview with the both of them.

Q.What made you decide to come and be a part of the festival?

  • Headroom: “Well besides the fact that I was booked to perform there you mean,Truth is the couple who throw the event are my friends and also run NANO Records, the label to which I belong as an artist. I always reserve a space in my calendar for the event and feel like a part of it in many ways.”
  • Broken Toy: “ I’ve been playing at Earthdance for years now as it’s run by the same people who run my record label ( Nano Records). 2 years ago i even had my ” Ten years of Toy” anniversary set there , so it’s safe to say Earthdance is always firmly written in my calendar”.

 

Q. How was the energy of the festival for you?

  • Headroom: “I thought it was great. Smiles for miles! I really felt a pulse during my set which was awesome. People seemed genuinely respectful and connected.”

 

  • Broken Toy: “ It was pure fun in the sun on the last day , which says a lot because over the years , we haven’t had the best luck regarding the weather at Nekkies. The wind can really pump through there and tear down the decor. Everybody was soaking up the sun and jolling appropriately”.

Q. How long have you been involved in the music industry?

  • Headroom: “ I have been Dj’ing for about 16 years & producing for 12. It’s been my full time job for 10 years”.
  • Broken Toy: “As a career, about 14 years. I had one other psytrance project with a partner called Damage which started in 2002. Shortly after that , I started Broken Toy as a solo venture.

Q. Who inspires you?

  • Headroom: “ Music, sounds, people and dancing.”

 

  • Broken Toy: “Anybody involved with dance music and playing in front of a crowd is driven and inspired by the dance floor in front of them. Its why we do what we do , and why we want to be better at doing what we do. Keeping an eye on what makes people go crazy on the floor shows me what i should be doing in my next track, because there is nothing out there that can get you more fired up about making beats than seeing what madness they can unleash on a dancefloor.”

Q. Plans or goals for the future involving your music?

  • Headroom: “ Headroom is my priority and there’s definitely still room for growth within the PsyTrance scene. Better music, bigger gigs, broader reach etc. I do intend to write other styles of music when I get the time. I already dj techno to keep my beat brain entertained”.
  • Broken Toy: “ As I’m already getting deep into my second decade of producing, the goal and the plans are to do whatever it takes to stay interested in the scene. I’ll admit there have been some years where the passion was not 100% there for me , but luckily the genre keeps evolving and changing and it remains challenging. A challenge is mostly what one needs to keep going in any creative pursuit , so I’m glad the road before me is still full of promise.

Q. Advice for anyone who wants to get to your level of the game?

  • Headroom: “ You have to be in it for the right reason. IE: love of music. It’s requires a lot of patience whether you are Djing or producing. It’s more competitive now than ever. Work hard , be smart and push to sound original! Remember to connect with the audience & not just the music. Producing will help you create an identity to stand out faster than just Djing in my opinion”.
  • Broken Toy: “ It comes down to 3 things :

1) You have to be the best at what you do , so create or choose a niche that you know you can dominate.

2) Be real – Flashy djs trying to cash in on a trend who don’t have any true love for the scene don’t last.

3) Be consistent – You build a following because people know when you’re behind the decks , they’re in safe hands and you are always going to deliver the goods. There`s not a lot of room at the top so you constantly have to be able to prove yourself and have the energy to maintain that status”.

In the end, the festival was a great success. Broken Toy had the crowd begging for one last song and we all left our souls on the dance floor. Remember at any festival, it always good to stay hydrated when it gets warm. Make sure you’re fully prepared with your equipment such as a tent, blankets, flashlight and enough clothing. Be warned, drugs and alcohol are taken at these events. It is not for one to judge but for one to be educated and get research on it. Always be aware of your surroundings.

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