Wonderland @ 24.-27.08.2017
Waldfrieden • Germany
Where ideas make love with possibilities
Most of the festivals out there are held on a remote piece of land, and there’s only few weeks for the setup. Waldfrieden Wonderland is different, because it allows a group of eager festival visionaries to run free in their creativity for almost an entire year. “We have a lease for the land all year round, that’s why we have a permanent infrastructure and many permanent constructions, like for instance tree houses, platforms, benches, altogether 8 bars and much more,” the crew explains in a chat with mushroom magazine. “Apart from that, this piece of land is located in the middle of a forest on the slopes of a hill, and there’s an actual house where we have monthly indoor parties.” That’s why Wonderland doesn’t really look like a temporary festival, but rather like a pirate village, like some sort of lush and peaceful land-of-the-fairies-version of Mad Max. Impressive wooden constructions, hidden nooks and crannies, strategically placed plants and flowers – everything is designed to create the ultimate environment for an exciting, adventurous journey. Wonderland was held for the first time in 1997, as one of the oldest Trance festivals in Europe it has grown and evolved for quite some years.
It’s no surprise that Wonderland has long established its place among the most popular open airs of the European summer season. However, it’s not getting crowded: “Actually we have quite a stable number of visitors at Wonderland for many years already. Usually there’s around 7000 visitors, and we are happy with that – because we like a stress-free family vibe.” If you’ve been coming to Waldfrieden for quite some time already, you will have noticed that the place grew organically just as the surrounding nature. That said, there has been a lot of sunshine, but also some serious hailstorms. When we asked about the greatest lesson the crew learned over the years of organizing the festival, they responded: “Not to give up if authorities or neighbours who can’t take a bit of noise every now and then give you a hard time. Often you can benefit from rocks being thrown your way, because it gets you out of your comfort zone and makes you discover cool new solutions.”
In terms of music, Wonderland manages to harmonically join all the different directions of today’s Trance scene, and to provide some amazing surprises along the way. In terms of infrastructure we should mention the Organic Food Area and the free shuttle service from the nearby train stations. Also the other program, like e.g. the very popular Healing Area or the great variety of workshops, helps to create a memorable festival experience.