News / Arts & Entertainment

    Glastonbury Kicks Off With Mud, Megastars

    Flash mob participants imitate dance steps of Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger, Glastonbury Music Festival at Worthy Farm, Somerset, England, June 26, 2013.
    Flash mob participants imitate dance steps of Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger, Glastonbury Music Festival at Worthy Farm, Somerset, England, June 26, 2013.
    Reuters
    Britain's largest music festival got off to a traditionally muddy start on Thursday as thousands of campers arrived at Glastonbury in pouring rain for three days of music headlined by veteran rockers the Rolling Stones.
     
    The event that started as a retreat for about 1,500 hippies on a dairy farm in rural Somerset in 1970 has grown into the world's largest music festival, featuring about 2,000 acts on 58 stages and attended by more than 135,000 people.
     
    Gates opened early Wednesday and by late Thursday nearly 120,000 people had flooded into the 900-acre site about 130 miles southwest of London, turning the working farm of festival founder Michael Eavis into a tent city.
     
    But while Glastonbury is known for megastars performing alongside eclectic acts, it also has a reputation for falling afoul of Britain's fickle summer weather, and this year was no exception, despite forecasts for dry weather.
     
    By mid-afternoon on Thursday the rain was falling heavily, continuing into the night, with revelers in raincoats and rubber boots — known as wellies — negotiating muddy tracks.
     
    "The forecast was fine so I am glad I did bring clothes for all weather," said Grace Murphy, 23, an Irish social work student, dressed in a bright pink raincoat and black wellies. "We'll still have fun. It's a great atmosphere and there's no other festival as awesome as Glastonbury."
     
    Meteorologists from Britain's national weather service, the Met Office, had forecast largely dry weather, but even in the rain the music fans descending on Glastonbury were determined to have fun, having paid 205 pounds ($315) each for tickets.
     
    "You've got to expect some rain at Glastonbury. It's part of the experience," said Amanda Delve, a retailer aged in her 40's, browsing some of the 350 food stalls on the site.
     
    'Glamping' in the mud

    The resources needed at Glastonbury are staggering, with 13 miles (20 km) of fences ringing the site where there are about 198 pubs and bars, and 4,500 toilets. The festival was not held in 2012 as the London Olympics needed so much of the equipment.
     
    An army of workers spends weeks preparing the site where the Rolling Stones play on Saturday, their first performance at Glastonbury, marking their 50 years in the music business.
     
    The headline act on Friday is Britain's Arctic Monkeys and on Sunday it is British folk band Mumford & Sons who confirmed this week that bassist Ted Dwane was well enough to perform after undergoing surgery for a blood clot on the brain.
     
    While the big names grab the spotlight, Eavis has ensured the event stays true to its alternative roots with music of all genres as well as dance, circus, and workshops in meditation, willow sculptures, and shamanic drum-making.
     
    On Thursday the Gyuto Monks, a group of Tibetan monks, chanted from a stage in the pouring rain. The Grammy-nominated group live in Dharamsala, north India, with the Dalai Lama who they followed when he fled Tibet after a failed uprising against Chinese rule in 1959.
     
    Over the years the festival has not only grown in size but it has also started to attract a different crowd, with research showing the average age of revelers at Glastonbury is now 36 — and it does not have to be too rough an experience.
     
    Campers can opt for a more glamorous stay known as "glamping" with companies offering ready-pitched tents, golf carts to get around, champagne, private toilets and showers.
     
    "The type of people here this year are totally different from when I first came in 1995, much older, but I guess at 205 pounds a ticket that's to be expected," said Mark Bignell, 45.

    You May Like

    Top US General: Turkish Media Report ‘Absurd'

    General Dunford rejects ‘irresponsible' claims of coup involvement by former four-star Army General Campbell, who led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring earlier this year

    Video Saving Ethiopian Children Thought to Be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at efforts of one African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children

    Protests Over Western Troops Threaten Libyan 'Unity' Government

    Fears mount that Islamist foes of ‘unity' government plan to declare a revolutionaries' council in Tripoli

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    New in Music Alley

    Take It From The Top: Stanley Jordani
    || 0:00:00
    ...  
     
    X
    May 17, 2016 5:01 PM
    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously. He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.

    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously.  He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.

     

     

     

     

    Blogs