The Arts & Expression theme for next year's The Secret Garden Party has been announced as "sweet dreams are made of these? and who are we to disagree..." - and promises to be the biggest VIP –LOL-Off ever where the festival goers will be the adored VIPs at their 15th edition happening from Thursday 20th to Sunday 23rd July 2017 at Mill Hill Field, Abbots Ripton, in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire.
Think Charlie Booker's world of the episode Nosedive in Black Mirror where you're a 5.0! Head Gardener, Fred Fellowes explains the thinking behind 2017's Arts & Expression theme saying, "Fame, celebrity, a media that obsesses over both and huge business that sells us access to, and relics of, them: the one thing that’s clear is we have ourselves a new religion… of sorts. But this is a doctrine that offers us a troubling vision of Heaven on Earth; a room, full of our idols, guarded behind doors, with a strict entry criteria…
So, in this Strictly X Factor Love Island I’m a Kardashian #get-me-out-of-here social, instant, online world; what should we do? How much do we embrace this idea of the universal right to fame and, if we do, should we all start immediately baking, blogging, dancing, cooking, singing and redecorating our little hearts out, to get 'there’? You know that place down the red carpet and behind the velvet rope…
"Well this summer the Secret Garden Party invites you to join it ‘there’ and finally find out if it’s anywhere we want to be.
"In the tradition of the bacchanals, we will satiate this worldly distraction to the point we can break free from it - to finally gain a true perspective. And in doing so, set a new, true precedent. So we’re donning our finest threads and polishing up like never before for the biggest VIP LOL-off you’ve ever seen. Where everyone likes / follows / adores you, the bouncers all know your name and the Sweet Dreams are made by You..."
With the theme announced SGP is now asking for next year’s creative wonders to apply to help in creating next year's experience. Since launching the Grants Programme in the Garden, there’s been an explosion of creative work adorning the site with imaginative installations year on year. Now SGP is on the hunt for the new and spectacular, theme-inspired pieces for 2017. Artists, Designers & the wildly creative, be a part of this credible arts collective. With commissions, grants and development funds available contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The number one rule is any idea must facilitate participation. To ensure that this principle is upheld, Secret Garden Party gives over half of all programming money back to the gardeners, in the form of arts and expression grants.
Tickets sell out each year and expect this year to be no exception. Tickets are priced at £190 (plus fully refundable £10 litter bond). A teen ticket is priced at £130, children aged under 12 years can attend for free, a campervan pass is priced at £60, and dog passes (limited numbers) were also available. Prices do not include booking fees.
To help those Gardeners, who prefer to spread the cost of their tickets, there are two types of instalment plans now available for adult tickets.
Since it's beginning in 2003, the Secret Garden Party has grown organically with an ethos of fun, friendliness, creativity and participation. Inspired by the original ethos of Glastonbury and Burning Man. The Secret Garden Party's, founder Head Gardener, aka Fred Fellowes, has succeeded in placing his own particular and idiosyncratic stamp on this event, making it quite unlike anywhere else in existence. His vision, commitment and enthusiasm continue to bring artistic communities together.
SGP has also won plaudits for award for spearheading the first UK public drug-testing scheme at last summer’s Secret Garden Party - a service approved by Cambridge Police and local health authorities - where people could have their drugs tested for safety on site.
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