Sunday 19 August 2018

Electric Picnic pull out all the stops as 2017 festival closes with a bang

Electric Picnic. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Electric Picnic. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Electric Picnic. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Electric Picnic. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
David O'Hara, Enya Hand, Peter Rooney, Rachel Mulligan, Jonathan Andrews. Man O War, Co. Dublin. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Shauna Furlong (24) Sara Mahood (26) Portmarnock. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Emerald Gibson (19) Shona Delaney (19) Lucy Kinsella (18) Kate Kennedy (19) (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Mother and daughter, Zoe Whelan (23) and Sharon Alguaidy (42) Dublin. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Mother and daughter, Zoe Whelan (23) and Sharon Alguaidy (42) Dublin. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Mother and daughter, Ruth Bannan and Brua Pike (13) Stillorgan (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Tanya Grant, Inverness, Dayna Pender, Kildare, Emma Lyons, Kildare. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Waterford supporters from Tramore; Grace Murphy, Siobhan Grimes, Caroline Cahill and Leonie Rogers. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Miriam O'Callaghan's niece Lizzie Jones. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Inisowen Gospel Choir. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Brian Kirwan (33) Heidi Kirwan (8) Fynn Kirwan (3) and Christine Connolly (32) (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Waterford fans Aoife Cahill and Aoife Murphy from Dungarvan, Co. Waterford. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)

Sasha Brady

The sun finally came out for the third and final day of Electric Picnic. Sun cream, sunglasses, sunburn and sore heads were on display in Stradbally as temperatures reached 23 degrees. Yesterday we complained about the cold and today it was “too hot.”

The final day saw the festival reach peak capacity as Sunday ticket holders arrived on site.

They were easily identifiable in the crowd; the bright-eyed people in clean clothes who were floating around in a cloud of perfume and shampoo scents. The rest of us were all matted hair and mud-stained clothes, with a slight air of confusion about us.

But were we having fun? Of course. Sunday is the last chance to get all the boxes ticked off and festival-organisers pulled out all the stops to ensure that the festival closed with a bang.

The triumph of Electric Picnic has always been the diversity of artists booked and this year was no exception.

Dublin Gospel Choir got the early afternoon faithful buzzing with their Main Stage opening set. Crowds streamed in from all sides of the field when they broke out Whitney Houston’s, I Wanna Dance With Somebody.

Emerald Gibson (19) Shona Delaney (19) Lucy Kinsella (18) Kate Kennedy (19) (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Emerald Gibson (19) Shona Delaney (19) Lucy Kinsella (18) Kate Kennedy (19) (Photo: Doug O'Connor)

Over at the Electric Arena, King Kong Company entertained the daylight ravers. The band are no strangers to Electric Picnic but they usually keep a late-night slot on the smaller stage. The daytime hours suited them just as well though and crowd were no less enthusiastic than the moonlight ravers, chest-thumping their way through the set.

The second part of the evening belonged to Irish female performers. Soule breezed through her Electric Arena set, despite some technical difficulties.

Mother and daughter, Zoe Whelan (23) and Sharon Alguaidy (42) Dublin. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Mother and daughter, Zoe Whelan (23) and Sharon Alguaidy (42) Dublin. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)

For some of the crowd, it was their first time witnessing the dance pop singer in action and she made sure nobody would forget her name in a hurry by instructing the crowd on how to pronounce it properly with a “Soule, ole, ole, ole” chant.

Singer-songwriter Ailbhe Reddy lulled her audience into a dream-like state over at Other Voices. Dressed in white, she gave a haunting performance that had the audience in thunderous applause before she’d even finished the set, she looked genuinely shocked by the level of love coming from the crowd.

Waterford fans Aoife Cahill and Aoife Murphy from Dungarvan, Co. Waterford. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)
Waterford fans Aoife Cahill and Aoife Murphy from Dungarvan, Co. Waterford. (Photo: Doug O'Connor)

Wyvern Lingo brought their insanely catchy pop and r’n’b set to a full house at the Other Voices stage. While earlier in the day, Loah lit up the same stage with her honed display of ‘art-soul’, laced with jazz and African rhythms.

Chaka Khan belted out her greatest hits to an eager crowd (where even Miriam O’Callaghan was spotted singing along). The legendary disco singer may be 64 but her voice is as powerful as it ever was and she knows how to get a crowd moving. We didn’t see one person standing still for her extended version of Ain’t Nobody.

This year’s Electric Picnic seemed to run more smoothly than previous years as gardai confirmed that “arrests were significantly down from last year”.

Before the day was out, it was announced by festival director, Melvin Benn, that preparations for next year’s festival are already under way. Tickets for the 2018 run will go on sale next week.

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