Cape Town - The annual Rage Festival in Durban, Umhlanga and Ballito kicks off this weekend. The week-long day- and night-time festival is known for its epic parties and non-stop entertainment.
But it’s also one of the most well-oiled machines with a crew of 450 staff working behind-the-scenes to make sure the attendees have the adventure of a lifetime.
During a telephone interview with Channel24, Will McIntyre – festival director – revealed just how much work goes into setting up the ultimate student music festival experience.
The festival, which takes place from 2 to 9 December, is spread throughout multiple venues with live music showcasing both international and local artists.
Rage 2017 is also a completely cashless festival using Howler technology across all its venues, clubs and even in its own transport system that will see festivalgoers using armbands as virtual wallets. This system eliminates the dangers of carrying large amounts of cash around but can also provide vital information in the event of an emergency.
“We want to give parents peace of mind that their children are in safe hands. If something goes wrong, they will know immediately as all personal details and emergency contact information is loaded onto the armband,” McIntyre told Channel24.
“We tested the technology last year and have decided to roll it out across the whole festival.”
But this isn’t the only security precaution that will be taken during the festival. Organisers are also ramping up the amount of event bouncers at each venue – with 1.5 bouncers for every 100 people. “We’re investing more than half-a-million rand in bouncers to ensure the safety of the students,” McIntyre said.
A private security company has also been hired to patrol the perimeter and ensure general safety. The non-profit Red Frogs organisation will also provide a support network for festivalgoers who feel like they need someone to talk to other than security or the police.
The festival also works closely with health and safety officials, medical staff, and paramedics to ensure emergencies are dealt with fast and effectively. “We’ll also have a mobile hospital with 15 beds at the main venue in case of emergencies,” McIntyre added.
With more than 17 500 visitors expected it seems like a daunting task to take on, but one the organisers are more than capable to handle.
The Sound Factory is the heart and home of Rage Festival and hosts the biggest parties, experiences and activations across the eight days. This mega venue boasts four stages.
The stages include the Samsung Mega Dome (EDM, Progressive House, Commercial House, Melbourne Bounce, Psy Trance, Electronic Live), Olmeca Beat Burra (Tech House, Techno, Deep Tech, Drum & Base), Red Square Base Bin (Hip Hop, Trap, Afro House) and the new Mali Zulu Acoustic Stage (Live acoustic).
Sound Factory dates are 2, 4, 6, and 8 December. (See the full programme here)
While Sound Factory is the main event and party hub of Rage 2017, this year the festival has partnered with MTV to present Club Life at #Rage2017. Most nights across the festival week, MTV Club Life will cover the hottest moments at all the Rage clubs – Azar, Crush, Origin, Sub Zero and TigerTiger. The cashless system will also be implemented at all these venues.
During the day festivalgoers can hang out at the various pool parties and day events. Transport to all locations are available through the festival’s very own transport network, Rage Rides. To hitch a ride you simply have to swipe your armband. (See all the Rage Ride routes here)
A dedicated Rage Festival representative will be on all shuttles to ensure a smooth tap and ride journey and shuttles to and from King Shaka International Airport will also use the cashless system.