Medusa Sunbeach Festival, Arenal Sound, Viña Rock, Mad Cool and Primavera Sound were 2019’s top five festivals, attracting crowds between 220,000 and 315,000.
BARCELONA — With nearly 900 festivals now held a year in Spain, mass live music gatherings have become the draw for tourists that bullfighting was for many in Hemingway’s day, and are competing even with football for sponsorship dollars. According to a new report detailing the country’s music festival explosion, 6.4 million people attended Spanish festivals in 2018, an almost 10% increase over 2017. Overall, the festivals took in €197 million euros in 2018, nearly 13% more than the previous year’s revenue.
The report, whose title Oh Holy Festivals! reveals the enthusiastic tone of its content, was compiled by Neolabels a communication consultancy which tracks Spanish festivals and their audiences and provides information to brands, and Fever, a Spanish entertainment site featuring localized concert guides. The report was informed by a survey of 4,375 festival goers, and by statistics that included information from Live Nation, PricewaterhouseCoopers and other companies.
In 2019, the Medusa Sunbeach Festival, an electronic music gathering in the province of Valencia, attracted 315,000 people, the biggest number of attendees of any Spanish festival. Arenal Sound, Viña Rock, Mad Cool and Primavera Sound were also in 2019's top five festivals, with crowds between 220,000 and 300,000. For the first time, indie rock and pop lineups were slightly eclipsed by more varied programs that reflected the growth in popularity of reggaeton in Spain, as well as diversity in global music trends.