Entertainment behind the scenes
Does Glastonbury live up to hype?
As a first-time Glastonbury-goer, I travelled to this year’s event with some trepidation. After all, I had to pitch my own tent, find my way around a massive site with hundreds of bands playing on dozens of stages, get enough food and water to live, and face the infamous portable toilet facilities that have a habit of overflowing as 150,000-plus revellers relieve themselves.
As the event reaches its conclusion tonight, with Stevie Wonder the headline act, I can safely say I would do it all again. Joining 100,000 or so people jumping up and down to the likes of Shakira, Scissor Sisters and Muse at the main Pyramid stage is something to remember, as is the infectious feel-good vibe that seems to fill the air despite the concentration of so many people in relatively small spaces. Of course, the smiling faces may have as much to do with alcohol and illegal substances as good music, but it doesn’t seem to matter as people enter an alternative universe for four days.
I have to own up to the fact that, with a media pass, I have access to quieter areas of the festival and so-called “hospitality” camping. That means slightly more room in the corner of a field, and, more crucially, a greater toilet-to-punter ratio. The second factor that has made 2010 easier than most for a first-timer has been the weather. I’m complaining about the intense heat, particularly in the media tent which is effectively a giant sauna, but everyone I speak to would take hot over wet, because that’s when Glastonbury turns into a giant mudbath, making getting around and staying clean nigh impossible.
I still have a lot to discover, and would like to get to more of the smaller stages to see less established acts strut their stuff. With any luck, I’ll have a chance to try next time around.