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25 Sept 2022

Electric Picnic promoter reveals 2023 plans at 'glorious' festival

Electric Picnic promoter reveals 2023 plans at 'glorious' festival

Melvin Benn at his press interview in Electric Picnic on Sunday, September 4. Photo: Lynda Kiernan

With Electric Picnic still underway in sunshine between the showers, the 2023 event is already being arranged, the promoter has revealed.

Speaking on Sunday at the festival, Melvin Benn described the return of the festival in Laois as "glorious".

"It is hard to know what's better. Is it what acts we bring or what the audience brings? The two collide and it's an amazing thing, the spirit, the craic. The amount of people that are stopping me and telling me how they were waiting for this.

"The picnic is the point where Covid gets put behind us, it's the last show where people were hanging on to their tickets," Melvin Benn said.

He revealed that the 2023 festival at least will not be any bigger in capacity, but future plans are to keep expanding.

This year it went from 55,000 to 70,000 ticket holders.

"Not in 2023," he said.

Tickets for next year are going on sale this Saturday, he said, and there is another big change planned.

"It is going fully digital. There will be no more queues at Ticketmaster. The loyalty programme will continue," he said.

They are already in discussion with performers for next year.

"100% we are," Mr Benn said.

Despite mucky paths and quite a few soaked tents and sleeping bags, the rain stopped early Sunday morning leaving the day unexpectedly sunny.

It is down to the ideal location of Stradbally in Laois.

"The local hills managed that," Melvin said, explaining how a local told him that rain breaks on the hills north of Laois taking the brunt away from the valley of Stradbally.

He feels that Laois has truly welcomed the picnic back, after a two year break due to the Covid pandemic.

"Laois has been really really welcoming, literally across the board, everyone has been really welcoming," he said.

He is proud to have returned the festival, and at a bigger size, to Laois.

"It's huge pride but part of that pride is being able to bring so many creative people together. So many creative people help make the picnic what it is. Giving them that opportunity to express themselves is actually also a source of pride for me. They make the picnic what it is," Mr Benn said.

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