World stars, big favorites, currents names, established artists from previous seasons and hundreds of non-musical programs, in the usual diversity of genres. This is what Budapest’s Sziget (‘Island’) Festival – one of the largest music and cultural festivals in Europe – offers for the "big comeback" between August 10 and 15 after two years of hiatus due to the pandemic.
On the main stage, for example, the organizers will be presenting headliners who will be bringing their fresh new releases. Kings of Leon, who released a new album last March, will make up for their cancelled 2020 Sziget concert, as will Dua Lipa, who will bring her Grammy-winning album from the year before last and is also the top of the wish list for Sziget visitors. These new songs will be heard for the first time on the current tours, for example, on the Sziget Festival.
Other headliners on the Main Stage include Arctic Monkeys, also promising new material, and the highly anticipated Justin Bieber concert, as well as headliners Calvin Harris and Tame Impala. Other names headlining the Big Stage include Bastille, Stromae, Lewis Capaldi, Sam Fender and recent Grammy winner Rüfüs Du Sol, who will headline several international festivals in 2022.
The Samsung Colosseum will return reimagined and dressed in an exclusive look, taking the concept of partying to an even higher level. The impressive dimensions are complemented by exciting design elements, and the experience will be enhanced by the venue's state-of-the-art sound and lighting technology. The DJ booth inside the 3,000-capacity central dance floor will resemble a giant gladiator, and will feature the best of alternative electronic genres, taking turns throughout the Sziget. Among the artists performing at this unique venue, which has already gained a solid reputation in Europe, will be Ben Klock, Joris Voon, Sasha, Matador or Nina Kraviz, Kölsch and – among many others – Seth Troxler.
The names of the Ticketswap Party Arena are also promising. Alan Walker, Steve Aoki, Apashe and NGHTMRE are coming. The Arena will also host Elrow, a spectacular party series known to the local audience and recognized around the world for its spectacular electronic music and incredible ideas, crazy performances and exciting, unusual characters. The Arena will host the Dutch company Q-Dance, also very popular, who focus their events on the harder styles of dance music, especially Hardstyle, Hardcore and Hard Trance.
The alternative music venue FreeDome presented by Mastercard will be revived under a new name and will feature Yves Tumor & Its Band, Riles, Woodkid, Beabadoobee, Caribou, Princess Nokia, Jungle and Fontaines D.C., among others.
Due to the expected high traffic and sell-out days, the organizers have rescheduled internal traffic on the venue. Routes have been designed to ensure the safest possible crowd management for admission and for the wave of departures after a major concert.
Sziget 2022 – in numbers
As the organizers point out, Sziget Festival, located on the Óbuda Island on the Danube in the northern part of the Hungarian capital, is the largest gathering place for different nationalities and cultural values from all over the world, with guests from more than half of the world's countries, 103 in total, and performances by artists from 54 countries over six days. Visitors come from all over Europe, most of them from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany and Italy, but this year's statistics also show that tickets have been purchased from the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Japan, Brazil and Australia. The international line-up is also varied, with the largest number of performers coming – apart from Hungary – from the United Kingdom, followed by France, Germany and Italy, but also from Cape Verde, India and Senegal.
The commitment to the environment is unbroken, with new elements being added to Green Sziget this year. For example, visitors who "buy a tree" with their ticket can contribute to the creation of a CO₂ compensation forest. With the support of Coca-Cola, a larger than ever collection program will be launched to collect more discarded PET bottles than ever before. They will continue to use re:cups, biodegradable cutlery and focus on recycling the waste generated. As part of the environmental protection, an area of Sziget, roughly adjacent to the gallery forest in the 3rd district, will be closed to the public due to the protected flora there, in line with the reclassification of the island as a nature reserve by the capital and WWF.
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