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Countdown to Takeoff – SUPERBLOOM Festival Starts This Saturday

The SUPERBLOOM Festival will take place for the first time on the 3rd and 4th of September at the Olympiapark Munich, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The venue, which is far from ordinary, will host an unconventional programme of events ranging from the biggest contemporary pop stars to up-and-coming bands and performances on art, lifestyle and sustainability. But how do Hungarians get involved in organising a German festival? How does a Hungarian production get to an international festival of this size? About the background of the event, we asked Zsolt Jeges, manager of CEEntral Party and president of HAIL Hungarian Association of Independent Labels, who is also responsible for the promotion of SUPERBLOOM in Central and Eastern Europe.

The only reason why the debut SUPERBLOOM Festival is scheduled to start in September 2022 is because of the restrictions imposed by Covid in the last two years. Originally scheduled for 2020, the event is finally happening after two years of waiting. But the real story of the festival began much earlier. Zsolt and I picked up the thread from here.

„The starting point for SUPERBLOOM is that Goodlive!, one of the most important players in the German events scene, has been without a major festival for the last few years. They organise festivals such as Melt, which focuses on electronic music, splash!, which attracts a mainly hip hop audience, or Full Force, formerly known as With Full Force, one of the most patriotic European events in the rock-metal scene, perhaps the latter being the most familiar to Hungarian music listeners. All three are held at Ferropolis, near a small town, called Gräfenhainichen, about 50 kilometres north of Leipzig. The site was for many years an open-cast mine and is now an open-air museum. The mining machinery that was once used can still be seen on-site, including a 30-metre high, 120-metre long excavator weighing 1980 (!) tonnes. I can’t imagine a more stylish setting for a metal festival, but it also makes an excellent visual backdrop for electronic productions.

This shows that it’s not just SUPERBLOOM that’s a different venue, although the truth is that Olymipapark Munich is also a popular place for events, with A-list acts such as Ed Sheeran, Parkway Drive, Machine Gun Kelly, 50 Cent and metal acts Amon Amarth and Machine Head performing there until the end of the year.”

However, unlike the above, SUPERBLOOM Munich does not focus on a single genre and its sub-genres. In terms of music, it is a mixed festival like Roskilde, Glastonbury or Sziget in Germany, and the organisers also place great emphasis on the presence of co-arts and off-programmes. Of course, Sziget as a parallel is not just a concept.

„The idea behind SUPERBLOOM is to be more than a mixed music festival in the general sense. That’s why we have venues for other arts and lifestyles, from visual arts, fashion, stand-up, circus performances to science and sustainability. We want to give visitors a unique experience that, as well as being a curiosity of a venue, goes beyond events where there are three things, mud, music and beer. 

In a way, this is no coincidence, since the festival’s namesake and one of its main organisers is Fruzsina Szép, who also introduced programmes such as the Civil Village and the circus and theatre performances at Sziget for example. If you look through the SUPERBLOOM programme breakdown, you will find mainstream pop headliners like David Guetta, Megan Thee Stallion, Calvin Harris, Rita Ora, Willow, or Tom Grennan, as well as popular and up-and-coming German bands like Kraftklub, Leony, Zoe Wees, or Roy Bianco & Die Abbrunzati Boys. In parallel, there will also be a special children’s venue, MiniBloom, open from 10am to 7pm, where families can enjoy a play house and creative activities alongside music for younger children.”

As well as featuring mainstream artists, SUPERBLOOM also places great emphasis on giving exciting early-career acts the chance to gain international exposure. Zsolt said.

„Talent scouting is always an important objective of Goodlive! events, to give opportunities to emerging bands, not only from Germany but also from other European regions. A good example is Heroes!, a two-day travelling hip hop festival that takes place several times a year and is one of the most important meeting points for representatives of the genre in Germany. There was one in Kassel in June this year, the next one will be in Freiburg the weekend after SUPERBLOOM, and the event to kick off next summer has already been announced in Geiselwind. There will also be a dedicated stage for up-and-coming bands at SUPERBLOOM, the NeoNeo Stage, where local and international acts such as Diana Goldberg, German indie group Die Sauna, Sofia Portanet and Swedish synthpop duo Juno Francis will perform. And, of course, Дeva will be the only Hungarian performer.”

How does a Hungarian act get on the bill at an international festival? This question was partly answered in last week’s Дeva interview, but it’s worth digging deeper into the background.

„The CEEntral Party is a series of programmes launched in 2016, which offers Central and Eastern European bands the opportunity to perform at important European showcase festivals such as Eurosonic-Norderslaag Festival, Reeperbahn Festival, the former Musikmesse International Instrument Fair and Festival, and this spring, The Great Escape in Brighton. As a professional partner of the festival in Central and Eastern Europe, we were given the opportunity to suggest some of the artists we think would fit into the programme of the now debuting SUPERBLOOM, and so we have added Дeva to the NeoNeo Stage, and Karin Ann from the Czech Republic, who unfortunately had to cancel at the last minute due to illness, so Philine Sonny will perform instead. Of course I’m really looking forward to these shows, and if I may say one more thing, my big favourite is Girl in Red, a young singer-songwriter-songwriter from Norway called Marie Ulven Ringheim, who’s indie pop project is not without its electronic influences.”

Last but not least, Zsolt also answered why it’s worth travelling a good six hundred kilometres for a festival in Germany.

„Maybe I’m ironic, but spending a weekend in Germany is not more expensive today than doing it in any other European country. There are trains to Munich practically every hour from all major European cities, the tickets for these are not expensive, and the city can be easily reached by car from any point on the continent. So, anyone who thinks that they would like to spend the first weekend of September in Munich at the end of the summer, at an exciting festival that is which is being organized for the first time, and where you can hear a lot of very good music or you can enjoy many great off programs, even with an early morning departure, could be there in plenty of time for the start on Saturday morning!”  

More information on the SUPERBLOOM festival website and social media!

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