By ASI GAL
As a nerdy teenager, I never went to any music festival that involved sleeping over at a beach, in a forest or on a huge empty parking lot. As a matter of fact, I hardly saw any music concerts except the yearly ones on Independence Day. And those were pretty lame.
Last year I decided to make amends. The In-D-Negev festival sounded perfect: a collection of great artists, very cheap tickets (it's a non profit event, with emphasis on community awareness, getting most of its sponsorship from the Merage Foundation) and located at the beautiful Gvulot Observatory in the north of the Negev.
When you're 18, you plan on going to these festivals months in advance. But since I was 31 my friends waited until the last day to decide that we're actually going. And by then there were no tickets left. We drove down to the festival area itself and I went so far as flashing my press card. Nothing. We spent the night drinking a lot of wine in a forest. Good times, but still no festival under my belt.
This year the organizers of In-D-Negev learned the lesson of last year. Tickets are only sold in advance. If you don't purchase prior to the event, don't even bother to come. And if you love Indie music, you should come.
Asaf Kazado and Matan Neufeld are the two people behind this great event. Both of them come from fields completely not related to music or event productions. They are just two people who love music. "Matan and I live here in the south and we both love Indie music," Kazado relates. "It bothered us for a long time that there were no shows of the music we love in our area. After going to a few festivals in Europe we decided to create this festival," he explains.
"The first festival had something more basic about it. It was easy enough to get performers to play, although today, when we are established, we get many more requests. However, the bureaucracy, now that we are settled, is much more aggravating today," Kazado notes.
Among the artists performing this year are Boom Pam, Aviv Guedj, Gilad Kahana and many others. In addition, the festival has many one-time special events. For example, a collaboration between Ha'Achim Remirez (The Remirez Brothers), Ruth Dolores Weiss and Yeuh Yaron, and a show by Fulgeance, "The Little Prince of Beat" from France.
"During the year we get hundreds of requests from artists who wish to perform here. We always choose the ones that there are not influenced by the opinions of the mainstream, and their music stays true to themselves," says Kazado.
"All the artists come because they want to bring their music to the desert, but also because they are aware of the huge exposure they can receive. Artists that were hardly known prior to the festival, say that after the festival they suddenly had performance requests and were recognized in the street," Kazado shares.
Besides the music performances there is a wide variety of art performances, video art by Sapir College students, theater shows and more. Also there is a great camping area and cheap food stands.
"Arranging the festival is year-round work and the real hard part starts half a year before the festival, when all the loose ends need to be tied," Kazado reveals, "During the festival itself, I try to enjoy it. But since I work even then, I don't always get to see the shows I want," he admits. "But even if I miss a few. The satisfaction from seeing such a huge audience having a good time is enormous,"
In-D-Negev takes place October 16-17, Tickets are NIS 100 and are only sold in advance. For tickets and more information visit www.indnegev.co.il You can also vote on site for the opening act of the festival.
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