Cymoedd music festival grows so big it has to move venue for 2016
A music festival promoted by students at Coleg Y Cymoedd has grown so quickly in the last three years it has now moved to a new venue.
Valleys Soundfest was originally staged at the college’s Rhondda campus in Llwynypia, but will this year be held at the college’s Nantgarw campus on Saturday, May 14. It will also field its biggest line-up yet, with more than 20 bands playing across two stages.
“The festival was started by myself and second year music tech students,” said course tutor and musician Scott Howells, formerly the frontman of valleys indie rock band Broken Vinyl Club.
“When I decided to deliver a music events management unit, we started doing small indoor events then decided it would be cool to do an outdoor festival.
“We bought a marquee with the help of the campus director and each year a new group of students inherit the festival, trying to better the efforts of their predecessors.”
To celebrate the move to a new venue, Scott and his students are aiming to stage the biggest and most eclectic line-up yet.
So far confirmed are some of the best new acts from Wales including The Moon Birds, The Riff, Reuel Elijah, Upbeat Sneakers and The Cradles.
“This year there will be two stages - one outdoor and one indoor, with up and coming bands from all genres such as indie, ska, hip-hop, metal, RnB, grime, punk, and dubstep.
“We think the eclectic line up showcases some of the best emerging talent Wales has to offer with something to interest everyone. We could have had 200 Welsh bands or more. There is so much talent out there. We had to really whittle it down.”
A vital component of the festival is that the college’s students gain experience of staging a festival.
Scott added: “The students take on all sorts of roles. These include artist liaison, graphic design, live sound, stage management, social media, website design and all the technical roles on the day as well as stewarding”.
The festival is also keen to support Welsh rocker Mike Peters' Love Hope Strength charity.
“Love Hope Strength is a great charity and one very close to our hearts in helping to fight cancer,” said Scott.
“My fellow music tutor Chris Summerill has done a lot of work for LHS and has become ambassador for the charity. The students swab festival goers to get as many people on the blood donor register in order to find bone marrow matches. We have so far managed to get over 70 people on the blood donor register with 1 match."
Valleys Soundfest will be staged at Coeg y Cymoedd on Saturday, May 14. The festival will also include a selection of Wales’ best street food vendors and artisan brewers.
Tickets priced £5 are available in advance from www.valleyssoundfest.co.uk