The V&A has announced plans to host a 7-day online celebration of all things Glastonbury to coincide with what would have been the iconic festival’s 50th year this weekend.
As home to the nation’s Glastonbury Archive, the V&A will launch a brand-new collections page on its website as an online resource for the public to learn about the festival, allowing visitors to browse its amazing collection of posters, programmes, designs, interviews, film, photographs, backstage passes and other memorabilia.
“Glastonbury Festival is a crucible for ideas and creativity,” Kate Bailey, V&A Curator of Theatre Design and Scenography said in a statement accompanying news of the virtual event launch. “The Glastonbury Festival archive is an extremely important growing collection for the V&A. This diverse archive reveals how the festival has developed exponentially over the past 50 years to become the global cultural phenomenon it is today.”
Running alongside the digital retrospect will be a plethora of new content providing an introduction to the Glastonbury Archive and the Festival’s History, as well as an examination of Glastonbury and Fashion, and Glastonbury and Stage Design.
The Memories Project
As well as featuring contributions from V&A archives and personal items donated by the events curators, organisers are also asking for members of the public to get involved by signing up to The Memories Project, and sharing their personal memories and stories of magical times spent at Glasto, in the hope of further bringing the festival’s spirit to life, and contributing towards a 360 degree mapping of the festival’s 50-year history.
Willing participants can submit written anecdotes to firstname.lastname@example.org now.
A Day in the Life of Glastonbury
A specially commissioned soundscape by award-winning sound designer Gareth Fry will also launch exclusively on the V&A website.
Recorded during the festival in 2015, the 7 minute piece includes recordings from across Worthy Farm to explore “a day in the life of Glastonbury”, conveying the atmosphere of festival life through snippets of conversations and familiar sounds from around the Glasto site, including sunrise at the Stone Circle and sound checks at the Pyramid Stage.
This sonic experience promises to recreate the side of Glastonbury enjoyed by its guests, but not covered by TV channels.
“Glastonbury is so much more than just music – there are comedian, circus acts, workshops, buskers, dozens of international cuisines,” Fry says. “The camping, the walking, the people you pass by and the people you meet. There’s something unexpected around every corner.”
#LetsMakeWednesdays – the V&A’s hugely popular online activity project – will follow a special celebratory Glastonbury theme this coming Wednesday, with a range of ideas designed to trigger creativity and performance.
Activities and challenges for children will include flag making, fashion creation and at-home music innovation. The blog series Pandemic Objects will examine how Glastonbury has repurposed festival objects to support the NHS.
The Music Lives On…
Honouring Glastonbury’s spirit of inclusivity and diversity, V&A museum staff have been enlisted to revisit their memories of attending the festival, by each selecting one song that reminds them of their experience, to collate a special and eclectic Spotify playlist which members of the public can update and add their favourite songs to, allowing them to create the ultimate soundtrack for their #Glastonbury2020 weekend.
“We are delighted that the V&A is joining us in celebrating Glastonbury’s 50th anniversary,” Emily Eavis, Glastonbury Festival Co-organiser says of the V&A’s plans. “The festival is witness to decades of creative, social and political change, and your memories are an integral part of this story. Please do share your Glastonbury memories and join in the V&A’s seven days of festival fun.”
For more details visit the V&A website now.