Having heard great things about Boomtown, nothing could prepare us for the diverse landscape of arts, immersive theatre and incredible production we experienced this weekend (10-13th August) in Winchester.
This year brought the ninth chapter in Boomtown’s history, as its storyline developed with Bang Hai Industries taking over the districts. Headliners included The Specials, Skindred and MIA, as well as Sugar Hill Gang, Ziggy Marley and Frank Turner.
We arrived on the Friday to no queues. The site is epic in scale, and has grown vastly in its 9 years. Getting involved in the immersive theatre is a great way to explore the festival, if you keep an eye out for members of the resistance! You can enter the asylum, find secret venues and follow the quests.
One of the first places we headed to was a hidden venue called Bearded Kitten’s Royal Theatre. Here we spent lots of time dancing and watching insane games like jelly wrestling, ‘Whose Crack is it Anyway?’, and games using harnesses to suspend people in the air.
Venture up the hill and you’ll discover Whistler’s Green, featuring the kid’s Sandcastle Stage. It’s here we caught a fun set from Sam and the Womp. A more relaxing area, Whistler’s Green features permaculture, political talks and the Lizard Lounge. We managed to catch Portico Quartet’s set too, which encapsulated the beautiful chilled vibe.
The stages at BoomTown are incredible structures. There’s the Lion’s Den Main Stage shaped like an ancient temple, and Bang Hai Industries stage – a huge science experiment transmitting radio waves and amazing light shows and pyrotechnics. It’s here we caught a classic banger-filled set from electro duo My Nu Leng.
There’s plenty to explore at Boomtown. We’re already counting the days to 2018 as the festival enters it’s tenth chapter and the storyline develops!
Words by Kate Stewart // @katiness