European Festival Awards 2013

Since 2009 the best European Festivals get awarded with the European Festival Awards (EFA). It is a co-operation Festival Awards Ltd, Yourope (the European Festival Association) and Eurosonic Noorderslag. The event is dedicated to recognising the contributions and achievements of the event organisers and performing artists that generate a lot money for local economies and brighten up the year for the festival-crowds. The awarded festivals get chosen by a combination of public vote and industry juries. NOTHING BUT HOPE AND PASSION presents the European Festival Awards 2013 which will take place at Eurosonic Noorderslag next week.

But what exactly are the Festival Awards? First of all it is an opportunity to recognise the hard work, the vision and the creativity of the festival industry, which grew bigger and bigger during the last years. Large parts of the Awards are voted for by the public through the event’s online platform. More Awards are decided by panels of journalists, booking agents and other industry experts. In order to create a level playing field for events, no matter what their capacity, voting is weighted based on capacity and the number of tickets sold. The goal is to bring together the festival industry and of course to celebrate and champion its remarkable impact on the cultural, economic and social lives of people.

From 2013, it is a combination of public votes and the EFA jury (who have a 25% vote in the final outcome of the public voted categories) that decides which festivals win awards.

Here is an overview about the awarded festival categories:

Best Major European Festival
in association with Intelligent Venue Solutions
The giants of the festival world playing host to the world’s biggest acts, tens of thousands of people and multiple arenas across sites that sprawl for acres. Like popup small cities, the largest festivals are a regular pilgrimage and a rite of passage for many. But which one is the best of the big daddies?
2012 winner: Tomorrowland (Belgium)

Roskilde founder Leif Skov celebrates the Lifetime Achievement Award – 2010

Best Medium-Sized European Festival
Not as large as the giants, but by no means in their shadow, these colourful and diverse events provide a more boutique feel, and a more intimate experience. Many start life much smaller, but have grown to this size due to their popularity. Some will keep expanding and join the ranks of the majors, others will settle happily into their niche and stay there. Who will pick up the prize this year?
2012 winner: Heineken Balaton Sound (Hungary)

Best Small European Festival
Often quirky, due to a personal touch and grassroots appeal, the cosiness and sense of community at these festivals is second to none for many people. This award celebrates those who stick to the mantra that small is beautiful.
2012 winner: Tauron New Music Festival (Poland)

Best New European Festival
Once again, some excellent new events were launched this year, bravely taking on those with established reputations. Bringing a fresh take, new music and alternative audiences to the festival scene, which one have you already put in your diary for next time?
2012 winner: Electro Magnetic (Germany)

Best Indoor Festival
Using the existing infrastructure of a town’s venues, this sector is growing thanks to no need for camping, very little threat from the weather and the ability to take place at any time of the year. Sold either on a show-by-show basis, or an all encompassing wristband, they give people chance to see multiple acts in the comfort of the indoors. Which one had you ditching green fields for the concrete jungle?
2012 winner: Sensation (Netherlands)

Newcomer Of The Year
in association with Eurosonic Noorderslag
New talent is the lifeblood of the festival scene and smaller events and stages are abound with fresh acts hoping to catch the ears of the masses of music-lovers, and secure their place on the road to becoming tomorrow’s headliners. This award celebrates the ones that managed to get the fans and critics to sit up and pay attention.
2012 winner: OF MONSTERS AND MEN (Iceland)

Best Headliner
A killer headline performance can be talked about for years to come, etched into musical history as one of those “I was there” moments. To succeed requires energy, musicianship, dedication, creativity and a fortuitous coming together of time and space. Some acts may be regulars on the festival circuit, but which one nailed it?
2012 winner: FOO FIGHTERS

Festival Anthem of the Year
The ultimate test of any song is how it’s received live – and there’s no better place than at festivals. While thousands of great records have been lapped up by millions over the summer, a few stood out as true classics, creating defining festival moments and were sung all the way back to the campsite. Which was your fave?
2012 winner: LYKKE LII Follow Rivers (Sweden)

Best European Festival Line-Up
in association with Company NA
Picking the right bill will make or break a festival – no mean feat when there are hundreds of others trying to better you and a decreasing pool of established acts to bid on. Whether it’s about securing the biggest names in the world, putting together special collaborations, or just knowing what the audience wants, our judges are looking for the festival which displayed the most vision when booking acts.
2012 winner: Rock Am Ring / Rock Im Park (Germany)

Artist’s Favourite European Festival
The group of people that has a unique insight into the festival experience is the artists. Playing in front of thousands of people as they travel from one to another, they probably see more than most do during the summer. But which one do they enjoy the most?
2012 winner: Roskilde (Denmark)

Promoter Of The Year
Recognising the festival organiser who has produced an outstanding event, overcome adversity, or truly gone above and beyond the call of duty and pulled something phenomenal out of the bag. There’s always at least one each year, often several so this one is often a very tough call for judges.
2012 winner: Pukkelpop (Belgium)

Yourope Lifetime Achievement Award
Dedicated to an individual whose personal vision and energy has propelled the entire festival marketplace forward in a dynamic, creative and positive way.
2012 winner: Herman Schueremans (Live Nation Belgium)

The Green Operations Award
(Previously the Yourope Green ‘N’ Clean Award). The Green Operations Award, presented by Yourope and the GO Group, recognises festivals which have made a significant contribution to or achievement towards developing more sustainable events. This may be through practises and systems introduced at their own event, through the development of good practices which they have shared with other events, a specific innovation or through continued improvements over a number of years. The award is judged and awarded by a panel made up of experts not directly linked to any specific festival with the exception that the previous year’s winner will be invited to cast a vote for the following year’s award only.
2012 winner: We Love Green! (France)

Who will win the 2013 awards? NOTHING BUT HOPE AND PASSION is looking forward to let you know everything about the European Festival Awards 2013.