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KINETIC DREAMING FESTIVAL Environmental As Anything

Ragdoll_Promo_Bus
Ragdoll – Pic: Elspeth Erickson

The Kinetic Dreaming Festival is set to roll on the Labor Day Long Weekend, Saturday, February 28, until Monday, March 2, at the famous Bindoon Rock festival site. BOB GORDON reports.

 

While we’ve all bemoaned the loss of various summer festivals in recent times, one has quietly emerged that is quite different from the rest. Over several days the Kinetic Dreaming Festival, combines the notion of the bush doof with more modern festivals with full focus given to the environment.

“The spark was watching a whole lot of kids from WA flying over to the East Coast and going to all these electronic music, arts and lifestyle festivals,” says environmental activist, Simon Peterffy. So, a little over a year ago I went over to see what all the fuss was about at the Rainbow Serpent Festival, which is probably the premiere festival in Australia.

“I really got and idea of what all the fuss was all about; it’s totally a new type of festival, with not just an emphasis on music, but a huge emphasis on arts and particularly lifestyle. So whilst over there I spoke to the guy who owns the property of the Rainbow Serpent Festival, and he said ‘why isn’t there any lifestyle festivals in WA? They’re happening over here almost every weekend’. So the idea spawned from that moment to look at putting on that kind of festival over here.”

Excellent in theory, but Peterffy needed to get together with a team who could produce such a festival. Enter local promoter Tony Croce and his team, who already admired Peterffy who in 2012 was among a group that boarded Japanese whaling fleet security ship, Shonan Maru 2, to demand an end to that year’s hunt in the Antarctic.

“That’s Simon,” Croce smiles. “He does the tree lockdowns when they want to take down the old growth forests. He believes in his cause. So Simon came to us saying he really wanted to amp up this festival and that he had a new way of doing it, rather than constantly smashing on with the Government.”

Now all they needed was a venue that could handle a three-day festival and camping event.

“We wanted a festival site that could grow,” Peterffy says, “where we could put on a big festival. We looked at a few and identified the Bindoon site as being the best possible site of the kind that is being put on in the East Coast.”

Bindoon Rock was promoted as ‘three days of freedom’ back in the ’80s-’90s. While Kinetic Dreaming is a very different beast to Bindoon Rock, the ideas of freedom and freedom from judgement have a similar ring.

Junkadelic
Junkadelic

“It was a multi-ARIA Award-winning site during the days of Bindoon Rock,” Croce says. “So we approached the landowners there and they were gracious enough to donate the land and help us develop this festival. My production house has come in, offering promotion, marketing and services at no cost because we believe in the cause. All the proceeds will go back to activism to help the environment.

“I run a few nightclubs, and my preface is carnival. Life should be a carnival. And one thing we’re missing in the community today is that carnival vibe. There’s these same bands at these same festivals and there’s a caveat over festival properties or people around the festival properties say there’s too much noise. So we wanted to take it out of Perth into the last gazetted rock’n’roll festival site in Australia. There are zero noise restrictions. The Bindoon council have backed it 100 per cent. It’s a positive for them.”

And so it is that some 70 DJs plus 40 bands and around 150 market stalls – ranging from crystal beds to tarot card readers, massage therapists to spiritual chanters – with a total of 340 acts in three days on four stages will happen with all proceeds going back to environmental activism.

This features Electrypnose (Switz), Loose Connection (UK), Staunch, Eurythmy (UK), DocDat ‘Boots’ (UK), Witch Freak (Italy), Chronbro (Indo), Ryanosaurus, The Mollusk, Daisycutter, Positive Thought, Junkadelic, Shadow FX, Miss Behaviour, Phsiris, Daniel Sun, Dr Stem, King Owl, 20HZ, Red Can, Olin, The Power Monkey, Illusha, Al Star, Skeksi, Jackson Juice, Harlequin Chameleon, Tasty Gecko, The Shoesmith Quartet, Sarah Graham, Ragdoll, Nu Jazz Ensemble, Junkadelic and more to be announced.

“There is a heavy emphasis on this particular event,” Peterffy says. “It’s a festival for the environment. We looked at the music, arts and lifestyle events on the East Coast and tweaked it a little bit. So it’s a festival for lifestyle and the environment. When we Googled those words, no one anywhere else in the world had done a festival where there was such a huge emphasis on the environment.

shoesmith_quartet

“So there’ll be a massive amount of displays and stalls, as well as speakers and workshops, all with an environmental emphasis. It’s really a coming together of those who are passionate about the environment to learn more and celebrate it.”

It has a family emphasis too and while Peterrfy describes it as a “a feast for all senses” the Kinetic Dreaming Festival is resolutely not about getting wasted.

“It’s a down to earth festival for down to earth people,” he says. “We’re encouraging people to tune in, not tune out. We want to highlight how we can affect change, and how we can look at these environmental issues that are important to us and for our children, and really make some changes for the planet.”

 

Tickets the Kinetic Dreaming Festival are $100 at the gate or $75 online from kineticdreaming.com.au, where you can check the full line-up. All profits go to forest rescue environmental projects (see forestrescue.com.au).