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Event Spotlight: Outsidein Festival

Monday 2 September 2013

Event Spotlight: Outsidein Festival

Later this month Astral People and Yes Please will present Zomby, BadBadNotGood, Freddie Gibbs, Jam City and more at the second ever Outsidein Festival in Sydney. We chat to Astral People's Leron Danilewitz to find out what to expect.

Last year's event was a huge success. What have been the main things you've taken away from this, and what changes will you be implementing?

We were really surprised as to how well last year went and really weren't expecting such a strong response. There were a lot of organisational elements which we plan on improving this year, to make the day flow better overall and most importantly make the event as comfortable as possible for the audience. There were a lot of aspects that we plan on improving for this year's event.

Are your expectations higher as a result of last year going well?

Absolutely! As soon as we wrapped up last year's, we started thinking of ways to improve the event and have worked closely with all stakeholders involved to top last years event.

How long does it take to organise the entire thing, from booking venues, and acts?

It takes a good 6-8 months to put event together, due to the success of last year's, interest in the event has increased drastically, which has been really beneficial for us in terms of chasing acts, as last year the event was a bit of an unknown entity, so artists weren't as open to commit to the event as they are now. OutsideIn is a long term project, so each year plan on expanding the event in different ways.

The niche festivals scene seems to be thriving at the moment. What do you feel makes OutsideIn stand alone?

We put a lot of thought into the curating of the event in terms of covering different scenes, while trying to maintain an overall ethos for the event. For us it's not just getting the biggest act and putting them on last and then have a bunch of stronger smaller acts filling up the rest of the day, we take into account the vibe of the act and what set length would really benefit them, what time of day, which stage would work best and so on. We had a lot of offers to expand the event size wise this year, but it didn't fit in with our plan on how we wanted to grow the event. We wanted to maintain the intimate nature of last years event, along with a low ticket price while offering high quality music.

So, tell us your 'Thom Yorke was at our festival' story. Did you get any feedback from him?

One of our friends works at Chugg Entertainment (who were touring Radiohead at the time), gave Vic a call earlier in the week and said Thom wanted to attend the event, Vic was like no way, you're lying... the conversation ended with him saying he was messing with us, and he really was. Early in the afternoon, we were notified that Thom would be attending, we still didn't believe, then Africa Hitech arrived and Thom was with them. It turned out that the Africa Hitech guys were friends with Radiohead's touring drummer and he asked them if there was anything cool to do on their day off and Mark Pritchard said they should come down to OutsideIn as they'd probably like a lot of the acts playing. Thom liked the idea, so decided to tag along. He sat side of stage and was really vibing on Shigeto's set.

Afterwards I had a brief chat to him and he really enjoyed the event and congratulated us for putting it on. Up until that point I was unsure that working in the music industry was the right career choice for me, having the event validated by arguably the most critically acclaimed artist in the world most definitely put that thought to rest and inspired us to continue working on making OutsideIn one of Australia's best festivals.