Those who dare, will find the Labyrinth. On August 7th 2021, an exciting new space opened on the UK festival scene. For fans of The Secret Garden Party, Labyrinth Open Air marked the beginning of something very special.
At the start of the last decade, the UK festival market boomed. But as more and more boutique festivals came along, they each struggled to remain distinctive. By 2019, the UK festival scene was dominated by the heavily-sponsored, corporate major players. After the unthinkable happened, a year without live music threatened the loss of even more boutique events.
But festival goers are craving the things that only boutique festivals can truly offer. We want a renaissance. We want to get lost. We want pure, blissful escapism. We want to let go of all our inhibitions and just be free.
Labyrinth is a festival with a sacred difference. Saturday 7th August 2021 at Tofte Manor offered the first glimpse into the resurgence of a magical UK festival scene.
Hidden in the Bedfordshire countryside – a 35-minute train journey from London Kings Cross – lies a scared and mythical labyrinth. The beautiful, well-kept 17th Century manor house, Tofte Manor, is a new destination for festival goers looking for somewhere unique to call their own.
The programming for Labyrinth’s opening day was impeccable. A worldwide exclusive debut live set from Fred Again.. was the main draw. Musically, the day also belonged to emerging DJ, Anu, who set the day off to a euphoric start, joyfully and expertly mixing everything from Doja Cat to Bell Biv DeVoe. Labyrinth’s own resident DJ, Nick Castleman, played a hot set on the Tom Dixon Stage, bringing White Isle vibes to the manor with DJs Pareja remix of Vos Y Yo by Ibiza Pareo.
For boutique festivals with a focus on hedonism, it takes years to build a strong spiritual identity. A connection between music, art, people and surroundings. At Labyrinth Open Air, this came instantly. The labyrinth in the garden is a source of peace and inspiration, which copies the design pattern of the ancient labyrinth in Chartes Cathedral, France.
As we enter a new age of hedonism, Labyrinth looks set to become one of the UK’s best-loved boutique music festivals.
The event returns for part two on Saturday 18th September 2021 with Dixon and Âme for their first B2B in the UK since 2019.