Wynwood Fear Factory: My first Experience as Festival Media
I have always had a fascination with being backstage and experiencing what goes on behind the scenes of a music festival. Last weekend, I attended Wynwood Fear Factory in the notorious art district of Miami. Being the weekend of Halloween, the festival had a spooky theme, but also had a scary-good line up that couldn’t be passed up, for only 50 bucks a day.
Women of EDM was approved as media for the festival, on top of landing an interview with Cedric Gervais for the first day of the event. I have always heard rumors about the illusive tendencies of the music business but I experienced them first hand this weekend.
I entered the music festival alone and nervous. I was given a media pass but wasn’t told where exactly it would get me. I flashed the wristband to several security guards and suddenly I was on stage next to the DJ!
This was the first time I had an opportunity to see a crowd that large from a DJ’s point of view. It was impressive, though my craving to be in the audience surprised me. I witnessed how the audience’s reaction can affect a DJs performance and realized how important the relationship between the artist and the crowd was.
As thrilling as it was to be side stage and have access to exclusive areas, I was in work mode. I learned how to balance the party scene of a festival with my professional goals. These goals were to network and to conduct a successful interview that night. I gained skills to make connections with people in the business, in an appropriate manner.
An imperative ability in the music industry is to be confident in yourself. When I first approached the backstage area I was intimidated. Everyone back there played the role of someone of importance. I practiced my confidence by introducing myself, only to learn that most of the people weren’t as significant as they perceived. I became more comfortable with these new acquaintances when I understood that we were all there for comparable objectives.
When it came to the interview with Cedric Gervais, there were lots of obstacles I had to overcome. Firstly, the interview was rescheduled several times, so I was constantly contacting Cedric’s manager for updates. Next, security was being stubborn to Cedric’s manager so he had to find an official organizer who could personally escort us to the green room. Meanwhile, it was down pouring with torrential rain, so I basically looked like a drowned rat on camera. In addition, the green room had incomplete walls so the noise pollution interrupted us and drowned out our voices on camera.
Overall, I was happy with the outcome of my first interview with a major artist. I learned a lot about the behind the scenes dynamics of a festival from a media perspective. The next festival I work at I’ll be walking in with confidence!