Spreading social and environmental awareness through music — that's Storm Festival for you.
Are you tired of music events where the air reeks of cigarette smoke? Do you cringe and inch away from the person next to you who is obviously high? If you need an escape from these often valid stereotypes, then the Storm Festival is your utopia.
Set in the hills of Coorg, the Storm Festival aims to make a statement: enjoy the music in an environment, which is truly ‘clean’. While illegal drugs have no place here, cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption are permitted only in designated areas. Add a whole host of meticulously planned eco-friendly features, and you’re now in the middle of a unique concept.
“The aim is to spread social awareness messages through music. We want to promote responsible tourism, and our ‘No drug’ policy is part of this,” says Lavin Uthappa, who along with his brother Sachin, put together this nature-meets-music idea.
“We (Lavin and Sachin) chose Coorg because this is our hometown; this is the second edition of the Storm Festival. We felt that the best way to make a difference is to first start by doing our bit for the environment at home,” he says.
If social awareness or green management isn’t your cup of tea, the artiste line-up should tempt a visit. The three stages — Electronica, Fusion and Singer-Songwriters — will ensure a two-day party, with the mood elevator of choice. Agam, Swarathma, Raghu Dixit (Fusion); Dutch trance act Dash Berlin (Electronica); and Vedanth Bharadwaj and Siddharth Basrur (Singer-Songwriter) are some of the names who will keep the mind racing, while headlining act Indian Ocean (featuring Shankar Mahadevan) will ensure that you don’t leave with a downer.
An event of this nature is quite rare in India, so here are a few facts which should give a clearer picture of what to expect:
Camping tents with two beds each will be provided for the duration of the festival.
All guests will have to pass five stages of security checks (which includes the use of sniffer dogs) to thoroughly rule out the entry of drugs.
Once you enter the venue, you cannot leave. This is done not only to keep a smooth flow in the security checks, but to also help guests appreciate the green surroundings and methods of the site.
Authentic Coorgi food will be served at counters. Paper cups will hold beverages, while coconut palmleaf plates will be used to serve food. Plastic items are no-no. Chemical toilets will be used at the venue. Each guest will receive a customised toilet seat.
The music will stop at 10.00 p.m.; no inconvenience must be caused to the animals in the neighbouring hills.
Organisers will consider setting up campfires on request, to give the guests an authentic outdoor adventure.
When: February 1, 2
Where: Stormfields, Napoklu, Coorg.
Bottomline: The carnival where ‘green’ isn’t code for ‘Wanna get high?’.