Day 0 – Sziget Festival 2016 – dancing with Parov Stelar and Rihanna

animal costume giraffe elephant concert sziget festival

After a rainy start, Sziget Festival continues with a readiness test because there was a full house on day 0 with Rihanna being the headliner. The atmosphere here at the Island of Freedom is quite relaxed, and although there are occasionally ponds or two, Szitizens manage to jump between them quite skillfully. What did the day bring? Many venues opened their gates and the program was colorful as always. The nicest contrast was in seeing and guessing who just arrived to the island today, and who is the rain survivor.
Sziget Festival attracted 90,000 visitors on its second day. I will never stop being amazed at how many people of different nationalities you can meet. I met with girls from Australia, who were travelling around Europe for the past two months. I also got abducted by Slovenian girls who made me dance to Naughty Boy in A38 stage with them because they did not want me to be alone. I received multiple hugs and kisses from a random couple who seemed to be very hyped by Rihanna’s gig! I befriended French and Belgian journalists by the Apéro camping and had a chance to practice my Dutch and French. Funnily, those German guys I talked to, did not even realize that I speak Dutch to them. This is the power of Sziget, it does not matter which language you speak.
Looking for a chill place at the Island of Freedom? Make your way to the tip of the island and visit the Sziget Beach! This year, you are not allowed to enter the waters of the Danube (the water colour is not very enticing either) but you can grab a cocktail or two and lie down on many cool spots like these little wooden nests. There is also a stage with regular program.

Sziget pro tip: Are you fed up with the crowds? Learn the shortcuts throughout the island and avoid the main roads, which are used by majority of the Szitizens.

There is always more to read:  Sziget Festival 2015 - Day 3 Summary: Colour party with Kasabian

Want to grab some culture at Sziget and have a good laugh? Drop by every day from 16:00 – 16:45 by the outdoor stage of Cirque du Sziget for the performance of Les Dudes! If you have a kid, bring it with you, this Canadian duo will make your littlun fly! I enjoyed their humour and judging from the crowd, they acquired many new fans after this show with a name Let´s do this!

The Dan Panaitescu Main Stage witnessed the gig of Jake Bugg. It felt like the Passenger concert in A38 last year, except the Passenger was funnier. I am not sure, it was such a great idea to place this solo singer on the biggest stage, maybe A38 would fit his music style better. I would have preferred to get to see the Mø on the Main Stage instead.

The program followed by Parov Stelar – band that knows how to make people dance and they did! The gig was quite enjoyable and it was a good preparation for the Rihanna concert. The Naughty Boy concert however was a collection of songs of other artists – Adele, Daft Punk (but really far from the original). I guess that happens when you do not have enough songs of your own. Everybody enjoyed their most famous song La la la.

And then came the Rihanna gig. So far, judging from the reaction of local media, it has not been of the greatest quality given the price of it (1m dollars). I was surprised to see her not really knowing all the lyrics for the song Umbrella. That came as a big surprise to me. It was often very evident that she uses playback and leverages her vocalists a lot. It seemed however that the audience is having a great time, and I did not even know she has so many Hungarian fans.

The biggest surprise for me was the concert of Koalabell (H) on the Europe stage. Cool indie sound with a band that was quite communicative with the audience. It even attracted local animals (tiger and elephant) to party. Discoveries as this one are actually something that makes Sziget Festival a great event. Just because you never know what is awaiting you around the corner.

There is always more to read:  Everything You Wanted to Know About Hungarians - part 1/2

Last but not least, a little tip from me: if you walk in a crowd, stay on the right. 

Stay tuned for more stories from the Sziget Festival, which will welcome even more visitors in the coming days and the rumours say that the Saturday program is also sold out! Szia from Sziget! If you want to see more behind the scenes from the Sziget Festival – check my story on Instagram –

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