Festival Republic will be “starting new festivals” in 2022

Melvin Benn, the director of live music giant Festival Republic, has said that the company will be starting new events next year.

Benn, as well as Folkert Koopmans of European promoters FKP Scorpio, were interviewed by Maria May of Creative Arts Agencies as the keynote event of this year’s International Festival Forum.

During the interview Benn offered suggestions as to what festivals can do to help emerging talent given that so many line-ups have been rolled over due to the pandemic.

“I am starting new festivals in 2022,” Benn said (via IQ). “I’ve always got to have at least one because I try to keep up with Folkert. So, we’ve got at least one or two next year, and that will give new talent the opportunity to start getting to play to a bigger audience.”

Festival Republic boss Melvin Benn. Credit: Ben Bentley for NME
Festival Republic boss Melvin Benn. CREDIT: Ben Bentley for NME

Koopmans, whose company organises some of Germany, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Scandinavia’s biggest events, then joked: “When I hear that Melvin is doing two or three new festivals, we might do four,” but said that staffing and costs could provide an obstacle.

This summer saw Festival Republic bring back Latitude Festival as part of a Government pilot scheme, as well as the full return of events including Wilderness, Wireless and Reading & Leeds.

Speaking to NME after this year’s Reading & Leeds Benn said that three of the six headliners for 2022’s event have been booked.

“I can’t tell you who they are, but we’re going to announce them and it will be very special,” he said. “Reading & Leeds are key and important festivals, they’re both bigger than Wembley Stadium. You get the chance to play for huge crowds.”