We’re now deep into what would usually be festival season. As the lockdown continues and we approach what would have been Glastonbury weekend, we catch up with Emily Scoggins from Festival Republic about the success and process of bringing Download and Wireless to life from home…
With years of footage to choose from, how did you choose which past sets to feature as part of Download TV?
You’re right, we have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to amazing footage. Andy Copping and team worked hard with the producer Mike to get the very best sets from over the years to produce the incredible evening shows.
There were really creative sessions such as a giant Yorkshire pudding wrap cook along and a workshop on fixing up your ageing band merchandise – what was the inspiration for these?
“What would Downloaders be doing on site?” was at the heart of so much of our daytime activity.
Starting with morning Do.Om yoga, Rockfit and mindfulness really DOES happen at the Dogtooth stage all weekend, so we had to include that.
The filled Yorkshire pudding is the stuff of Download legend and we were fortunate in getting Masterchef winner and Download mega-fan Simon Wood to do a step by step cookalong for us.
Amy Valentine is another download fan so it seemed only right to get her to do a piece for us on customising your old band t-shirts – Download fans love repping their favourite bands on their T-shirts all weekend.
How was the content scheduled throughout the weekend?
The digital team (Kate English, Jack Kane, James Wallace, Lottie Cook, Rory Brown) are obviously working remotely, so google docs and daily multiple zoom calls have been our life for the past few weeks. Kate did a great job of leading the scheduling fitting the content together like a jigsaw to ensure the day flowed across twitch, twitter and Facebook.
We were keen to really hammer home that at 7pm Fri and Sat and 4.30pm on Sunday it was time for the whole community to come together to watch the YouTube Premieres, and people from all over the world did just that.
Wireless Connect is the next festival that you’re taking online this summer, with an innovative twist; The audience will have the opportunity to watch pre-recorded performances in 360 virtual reality via the melody VR app. What additional planning and logistics did you need to factor in for this?
The vast majority of the Wireless Connect footage is being shot specifically for the weekend. It’s being recorded in an extraordinary studio in Ally Pally’s Victorian theatre and in MelodyVR’s existing studio in L.A. It’s been meticulously planned for everyone’s safety. The cameras don’t need crew behind them, the cleaning teams sanitise between each performance. It’s a military like operation.
Has there been anything you’ve learned from Download TV that you’ll be applying to Wireless Connect?
There’s a deep rooted love of each festival within the fan communities and keeping them and what they want to see at the heart of the content and how you present it to them is essential. Just because we’re not in the fields this year, it doesn’t mean that the love for festivals has waned at all.
Wireless Connect will be broadcast from 3 – 5 July.