Everyone wants to play Glastonbury, right? Here are three tips from Emily Eavis, daughter of festival founder Michael and co-organiser, about how to get a gig on one of the festival’s many stages.
Enter the festival’s Emerging Talent Competition (ETC)
Entering the ETC is the best way to get noticed by Glastonbury’s bookers.
“It’s a good way to make sure you get heard at our end,” Eavis says. “Most of the 20 finalists [in 2017, when the competition was last held] got gigs across the festival.”
Previous ETC finalists include Izzy Bizu and Declan McKenna, both of whom went on to make it onto BBC Music’s prestigious Sound Of list. Keep an eye on the Glastonbury Festival website, as entries open in January. You gotta be in it to win it.
Send your music in – to the right place
Don’t send CDs to the festival office – the Stage Programmers are not based there, so your offering will most likely wind up in the bin. You can however send CDs to two stages: The Acoustic Stage and the Croissant Neuf Stage.
KT Tunstall, Martha Wainwright and Seth Lakeman have all played the Acoustic Stage. If you think you could shine on this stage, send CDs to Glastonbury Acoustic Stage, Asgard, 125 Parkway, Regents Park, London, NW1 7PS.
The Croissant Neuf Stage is in the Croissant Neuf Field which is all about sustainability – think solar panels and stalls selling eco-friendly, handcrafted goods. Back in 2011 an up-and-coming singer-writer by the name of Ed Sheeran performed here. He returned, of course, to the Pyramid Stage in 2017. If it’s good enough for Ed, it’s good enough for us. For the Croissant Neuf Stage send CD’s to Sally, Croissant Neuf, 132 Wells Road, Glastonbury BA6 9AQ.
Make your name on the Bristol or London music scene
Word travels, so if you’re making waves on the music scene then you’re much better placed to land a gig. “We rely on a lot of young promoters particularly in Bristol [the major city closest to Glastonbury] and London,” Eavis says. The bookers also closely follow artists who win support from BBC Introducing and DJ Huw Stephens.
If you know the programmer for a particular stage, then of course you could contact them yourself. There are loads of stages – the Rabbit Hole and the John Peel stage are particularly supportive of emerging acts. Show some initiative and work those contacts.
Emily Eavis was speaking at BBC Music Introducing LIVE 2018.
MAIN IMAGE: Stormzy on The Other Stage at the Glastonbury Festival, at Worthy Farm in Somerset in 2017. Photograph by PA.