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When post festival timetables on-line?

Soldier boy 02 May 10 - 11:23 PM
GUEST 03 May 10 - 06:00 AM
open mike 03 May 10 - 06:19 AM
scouse 03 May 10 - 07:48 AM
Soldier boy 03 May 10 - 08:19 PM
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Subject: When post festival timetables on-line?
From: Soldier boy
Date: 02 May 10 - 11:23 PM

I'm hoping to hear from festival organizers to share their knowledge and good practice and from festival goers to learn their preferences and dislikes so that I can learn from you all and hopefully then politely proffer appropriate advice from your experiences and findings in the future.

I raise the question in the first place because a festival close to home in the UK only recently posted its complete timetable on it's website barely two weeks before the actual weekend festival starts.

It seems that the person or persons responsible for putting out the full timetable of concerts,workshops,singarounds/playarounds,dance outs,community events and street performances/displays etc etc etc for this particular festival decided to wait and wait until the very minutia of detail was confirmed and crossed off before publishing a composite timetable for the weekend.

Two weeks before a festival seems very late and very tight to me to please and satisfy punters to get a picture of the line up and who may only be going for a day and want to plan their schedule and decide, very importantly, whether they wish to attend and are willing to fork out the cash to book in advance.

I must add that many key events/concerts etc were posted on the site under postings listing key artists and when on and where and a 'news'site etc well before this but you couldn't link them all up to get a fairly reasonable picture of all the stuff going on between these to build up some kind of itinery for the day.

So, I guess what I am trying to say is, is there a better way of doing this?

Is it not possible to post a 'working' timetable two or three months in advance or even earlier, which is a "work in progress" and can be added to/filled in/revised/changed/tweaked/adjusted to accomodate minute detail on almost a daily basis?
But at least the 'fabric' is there and you can see it developing and growing and which should add interest and intrigue as it is added to.

I have seen such 'tweaking' on many occasions at festivals like The Whitby Folk Week who publish a daily newsletter and post changes at their regular venues etc so that people know about last minute changes to schedules. It seems to go on all the time at many festivals.

In an imperfect world, continually subject to change and calamity; the best laid plans and timetables will never be set in concrete, so surely you can never dot all the i's and cross all the t's, before you have to call it a day and decide what the hell and just put up what you have got!

My real reason for posting this thread is that whilst I am not involved in organising this folk festival close to home, I feel that it is very close to my heart and I love it. It is a very special festival to me and has been for many years now.

For this reason I was very concerned and felt very frustrated about the great delay in posting it's timetable on-line because I feared that such an obvious long delay could greatley damage its ability to interest and pull in the punters and therefore naturally have a very adverse effect on its ability to generate income which could and may affect its prospects to hold festivals in the future.

Only time will tell, but I sincerely hope that that won't be the case here.

So what can you wise sages out there advise me on this delicate subject.

All views, from every view, are welcome.


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Subject: RE: When post festival timetables on-line?
Date: 03 May 10 - 06:00 AM

First of all I think it is necessary to distinguish some sorts of festivals from others.

For a festival held on a green-field site with admission to most of the events with a season ticket then it is not a big issue. I feel people generally buy into the weekend for those (Southwell, Shrewsbury, Towersey, Shepley). Might mean trying to get there a bit early for the Friday evening, or leaving a bit late on the last day, otherwise you are there for the weekend.

For a festival with a multiplicity of venues and "open" access then it may be a problem. I think the answer here is that if you are close to home, as you say you are volunteer to do it yourself!!That way you can ensure it is done properly!

In fact I wonder why it is delayed? Has there been a huge change in the venues? Alternatively had the organiser been bogged down with other issues?

An organiser would normally have the venues on a spreadsheet (or similar) and each year just change the artists/workshop names in particular places. Only when there is a change - a big expansion for example would this normally be an issue.

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Subject: RE: When post festival timetables on-line?
From: open mike
Date: 03 May 10 - 06:19 AM

there is probably some issue of wanting to make sure contracts are signed and performers are confirmed to avoid "false advertising" or misleading info or need for apology later...

but it would always seem that TBA (to be announced) could be the

here is one web site for a music festival in the U.S. that is well
run, well organized, and well

this event happens twice each year

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Subject: RE: When post festival timetables on-line?
From: scouse
Date: 03 May 10 - 07:48 AM

Tonder Festival ( is up and running albeit not complete, however the line up as it stands would be a right good Festival anywhere in Europe!!

As Aye,


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Subject: RE: When post festival timetables on-line?
From: Soldier boy
Date: 03 May 10 - 08:19 PM

Yes GUEST, the festival I am referring to is not a green-field site festival, it is based in a village with a multiplicity of venues and "open" access in concert venues, civic centres, market halls, hotels, pubs and wine bars etc etc.

It is a mix of ticketed events where it is best to book beforehand, pay on the door concerts/workshops and many free events including singarounds/playarounds/dance displays/children's events/processions and much more.

A template/spreadsheet of venues etc that can be used each year would seem to fit the bill here and I am not aware of any "big expansion" issues.

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