Well, where do I start? 5 months in development and creation, 8 artists involved, making, in total 35 hours of footage or motion graphics. Reading this back, it was a big ask, but the work was made, and it was magnificent. The venue fell short, slightly, of my expectations - I wasn't prepared for wrinkly screens & broken projectors - and the ground looked like...well, a mixture of soil and fag-ends.
But by the time sunday arrived, I was already harbouring some doubts about who would want to see this event. The festival had a huge proportion of very young folks - many, many more than I'd have predicted for this festival. The previous two nights had seen the Igloo packed with revelers and big beats. They came back for more, and were a little disappointed! There was a hardcore of folks who clearly did want to watch our show, but had I known the demographic when invited to put this on, I'd have probably thought twice about it.
You see, the Big Chill has changed, almost beyond recognition. The name used to say it all, but now seems like a misnomer. The beautiful, laid-back vibe that used to pervade the whole site, has been replaced by hoardes of feisty teenagers, dodgy geezers and a general lack of care and consideration that used to be the hallmark of this event.
Maybe I am just getting too old for this - I could see lots of folks clearly having fun, but most of this was fueled by stimuli of one sort or another. But one thing was for sure, they weren't interested in anything that went below 120 bpm.
It saddens me to say that I will never go near this festival again. The Big Chill had a huge part to play in my family's life since 1999, when we first went. Pete and Katrina really built something beautiful, that touched so many people's lives. Now, it is just another festival on the calendar, where tens of thousands of folks will descend upon it and spend the weekend getting totally trashed. If that's what they want to do, who am I to knock it?
I'll finish by thanking everybody involved in Quiet Voices - Tim Hetherington & Kate Flurrie, Muffled Visions, Simon Wild, Tim Holmes, MachV, Enrico & Francesca Coniglio, Bruce Bickerton, John Heery, Tom Sweet and Tom Green. You were all brilliant!