What an experience! I would not be lying if I said that it’s right at the top with the best things I’ve done my whole life.. Amazing!
On the 19th of June myself and my sound engineer teacher-person went off to Glastonbury to do sound engineering/stage managing at the Strummerville stage, which is quite a big deal tbh. When we got to Castle Cary there was only one coach going to Glasto so we got on it and the bloody thing dropped us off at Gate A, which for you who don’t know is literally on the other side of Glasto to where we were going.. As no one wanted to give us a lift across the site we had to walk it, carrying all our things for 10 days and in the pouring rain. So much fun… It took us two hours through mud, rain and up a bloody hill to get there, but we got to the campsite eventually and then we spent 24h in the pissing rain.
On Tuesday most of the team had arrived and the rain had stopped, which meant we were off to set the rig up.. Ridiculously heavy equipment, but thankfully the Strummerville boys were kind enough to help us out! Then we had to do all the techincal stuff like connect everything, set all the extra speakers up and test the whole thing, but we took our sweet time doing that as the first live performance wasn’t until Thursday.
When Thursday came around I had a horrible hangover from being out and about on Wednesday evening seeing as that’s when the festival opened to the public and my favourite lecturer runs The Rum Shack (one of the grassroots hiphop stages) so I was there all night partying my ass off! But I was down at the site at 11 am on Thursday morning to find that there had been a flood on our stage because we had this wonderful tree going through the middle of it.. But once that was fixed it was back to working mode, lifting equipment and getting everything ready to rock and roll! Will did all the sound engineering throughout the weekend and myself and Mr. Dave Danger did the stage managing. Because of my horrible hangover I decided to go to bed early on Thursday and then kick off the weekend properly on Friday.
And so I did indeed! Friday was an easy day at work because we only had like one band and then DJs. Dave turned up with a horrible hangover which I found hilarious and left him to sit and try taking care of that whilst I did all the work and I then nagged his ear off for a while as payment haha! After everything was done I chilled with the DJs for a while, they were extremely nice (and probably very high on something) so it was a lot of fun to just hang with them for a bit before I headed down to the mayhem to meet up with my friend Ellie from Wildlife. Now, because Glasto is such a big festival and there’s a ridiculous amount of people it’s very hard to find someone but very easy to loose them. So by the time I got to where we were meeting Ellie had lost one of her mates and it took forever so in the end I decided I was going to go see Muse all on my own, which I enjoyed and I made some friends there anyway. I did however have a bit of an anxiety attack in the middle of the like 3rd song so I had to get out of there and before I managed to get to my tent I ran in to some other friends and partied all night long!
Saturday was another crazy day at work. As always we were there at 11am testing everything, but when I got down there I found this horrible iron bar thingy across the front of my stage and I was fuming, it was absolutely horrible! I got the fact that it was balancing out the speakers and what not but it was ridiculous and a lot of the acts complained throughout the day, but there was nothing I could do about it, sadly.. When everything was ready for the day everyone took of for a few hours before the first performer was on so I had a chance to OCD out and tidy the container with all the equipment, the backstage area and the stage.. I was a happy camper after that! Dave took off early that night leaving me to stage manage, which was fine, I like that he trusted me like that with the stage and artists and clean up and everything else, it made me work ten times harder and realise what it is to properly stage manage without that “safety net” or whatever. When the cleanup was done it was time for me to run across the muddy Glasto all the way to the Pyramid Stage to see Adele, and I made it just in time for the first note of “Hello”! We did however call it an early night and go back to our tents after her set, which was amazing!
Sunday came along and it was the last day of “active Glasto” which made me very sad tbh.. Our surprise act didn’t bring any equipment as they’d just done a set on another stage and so they didn’t have time to pack everything down so Dave and I were running around trying to find guitars and bass and everything else a band needs to perform live, but it worked out and they packed Strummerville out! When it came to the clean up at the end of the day I could feel myself tearing up because I felt this amazing experience coming to an end and I just didn’t want it to… Will and I stuck around and had a beer by the campfire with all the Strummerville people and it was just lovely.
I can honestly say that it has been the best experience of my life. I might have been soaking wet, covered in mud and exhausted for about 95% of the time but I could have kept going every day for the rest of my life, I know this is what I want to do and what I love to do, I just hope more opportunities like this comes along because I can’t see myself doing anything else in this world.
I’d like to thank Ford and Will for bringing me along to Glasto and letting me work my ass off every day. And of course the one and only Mr. Danger who listened to me bitch about life and has taught me so many things about the thing I love to do, like I said, I’m coming for your job!
Until next year Glasto, it’s been emotional!