Earthdance Cape Town Moments – Know your History
Where it all started…
They say all good things start off with good intentions and Earthdance Cape Town is one such event that typifies this. When the opportunity presented itself these good intentions manifested into an iconic event on the Mother City’s annual outdoor music festival calendar; one that continues to give an amazing experience to fun-seekers and equally amazingly, contributes to charitable causes every year.
Less Is More
The first event Earthdance Cape Town hosted was in 2000 at Hangklip, just past Kogel Bay. It was very much a family affair with friends and the psytrance community pitching in to assist where they could. For example a couple of chaps drove up the sum total of two toilets on the back of their van to add to the small handful of ablution blocks onsite. Security was made up of a couple of super friendly mates too, probably too friendly as there was little or no fencing at the venue and the gate was actually just a table and chair in the car park. But people were happy to pay their R 50 and contribute to the start of what we know today as one of the major highlights on the outdoor season calendar.
The response to the event took everybody by surprise. They expected a turnout of around 300 people but on that Saturday evening the head count was over 1,500! Needless to say they may have been just a little under prepared first time around. But the experience was pure magic.
The grass is always greener… hopefully!
For the second event in 2001 they found this venue along the N7 which was basically just beach sand among some trees on a farm so they brought in an acre of lawn the week before and put it in amongst all these trees to create a dancefloor. The grass seemed to survive the party so we can’t help but wonder if there’s still this random oasis of lawn in the middle of nowhere on this farm. There were even pictures in the Argus that year with Regan and co. with spades in hand, so we know it really happened! Regan can’t help but laugh at the irony of those photos since he’ll be the first to confess, nothing he plants usually grows!
Prayer for Peace
The first year they played the Prayer for Peace Regan says they had no idea how people were going to react; if they would become disinterested or whether they’d seize the moment and embrace the message, but each and every time it has been the same experience and that is that people really appreciate what is going on and realise that there are other events around the world like Switzerland, Miami, UK, France, Australia etc who all stop the party to play this Prayer for Peace track at the same time; “every year the response blows me away”, says Regan.
“Probably one of the most amazing moments though was on the Music Box stage one year when the MC was kinda adlibbing his own version of the Prayer for Peace message and someone shouted ‘One Love’ and suddenly everybody started singing Bob Marley’s One Love. It’s moments like this that are spine tingling and stick with you forever,’ he laments.
The Gift of Giving
Once Good Times realised the potential and power of Earthdance to impact on party goers with the message for peace, they very quickly turned their attention to the charity aspect of doing the festival. Through the years Earthdance Cape Town has contributed to numerous non-profit organisations in the Western Cape.
“It’s always amazed us when we’ve made these contributions and told them that it comes from the dance music community, how they think we’re the heroes when in fact they are the real heroes who are selflessly giving back every day of their lives. But for us the gift of being able to do this event and give something back is the most rewarding part of the whole journey.”
Aliens and grannies
Over the years Earthdance Cape Town has always had some weird and wonderful performance art at their events.
Who remembers the weird Alien that used to wonder around the dancefloor giving people a giggle or two (or maybe even a fright)?
The funniest moment though was probably the year the grannies arrived with vacuum cleaners and rollers in their hair to clean up the dancefloor from the night before while the party was, of course, still in full swing. People weren’t sure whether to take them seriously or not, but the message to keep the dancefloor clean sure got across!
After the initial few Earthdance Cape Town events they decided it was time to rope the whole of the mother city’s underground music community in to be a part of this rewarding initiative. Although the foundation of the festival in Cape Town has always been psytrance, various genres and at one stage even live bands became a feature at the festival. More recently they’ve also included international headliners on the main stage as a thank you to the psytrance community for the ongoing support.
One year the Real Estate Agents (Sibot & Markus Wormstorm) dressed up as Ketchup and Mustard sauce for their show on the Music Box stage.The following year they topped that as the Cat in the Hat and a Chicken character we’re struggling to place. [pictured above.]
Needless to say it was memorable!
Last year Broken Toy celebrated 10 years of producing killer music with a mammoth retrospective two hours set that all but blew people away.
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