The Roskilde Festival

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The Roskilde Festival is an annual four-day music festival with a 30-year

history. The number of participants during 2000 was around 100,000. The

Roskilde Festival is an established and popular festival in Scandinavia and

attracts a lot of young people. Fans from various countries attend the festival

to experience the concerts of their favorite stars. The vast festival field turns

slowly into mud, littered with paper programs and thousands of spectators

stomping around. Various concerts go on until early morning. People continuously

walk between different stages, tents and accommodation areas. It is a

place for experiencing the bands and to socialize with friends and other people.

Attending spectators feast on beer and have a good time together, stumbling

around within the event area.

The festival is held on a vast, flat field. The spectators camp on the enclosed,

pre-prepared camping sites in tents or in campers, although some stay in hotels

in the vicinity. The festival area is fenced and accessed only through controlled

gates. There are eight different stages with different musical focus. During the

festival it is possible to access the Internet (www) through a small number of

terminals placed in bars and at gates. There is also a daily festival newspaper

available. These sources serve as information support regarding, for instance,

the festival program during the event.

Supplement to the Event

The attention of the spectators in the festival is different from the Rally. It still

has a periodic nature, but there are no two-minute intervals. The intervals are

exclusively defined individually, as a result of each person focusing on different

things. The happenings of the event do not set the same explicit rules for visual

attention among the spectators as of the Rally. The concerts on stage are

defined in time in line with the festival program. The experience of the concerts

is also less dependent on continuous visual attention — it is music. The attention

of the spectator varies on the concert on stage and social interaction with

others. During a concert there is no obvious need for continuous information in

comparison to the Rally. Event information becomes of interest between the

items in the festival schedule in order to plan the day. Observations suggest that

event information is mostly used to schedule concerts and other activities and

to handle deviations from the program, as a basis for how spectators go about

their decision-making. As opposed to the Rally, the spectators at Roskilde are

not as interested in background information about the artists participating in the

event. Their main purpose is to experience the festival and its belonging

concerts together with friends and other people as a social event. Therefore,

event information plays a subordinate role, as a facilitator of these activities.