BLEND BLOG

Back to Blog

5 Ways Festivals are using XR

Sara Martin / 8 months ago

The sun is finally here and we can all sense the smell of the Summer, barbeques and Festival season. After a two year hiatus of live events and uncertainty for the live events industry and festivals, physical events are finally back!

This time festival-goers are more eager than ever to enjoy this experience in person. However, after many months of working from home, attached to our different types of screens and devices, festival-goers are expecting technology to be integrated into the live experience somehow. So a hybrid experience is a good solution. 

AR experiences of all kinds are being integrated to enhance the festival experience and make it more interactive, immersive and unique. Here I would like to share with you some of my 5 favourite solutions:

1. Virtual Reality and Digital Festivals.

In 2020 and 2021 there were some great examples of festivals bringing their experience into VR. So their fans could still enjoy the experience and their favourite artists somehow. These sorts of experiences have opened the door to many people who can not attend in person. Therefore, streamed shows and festivals are becoming a great way to reach new audiences and also, an extra revenue stream for festival organisers.

A great example of a digital festival is ‘Tomorrowland Around The World’ experience in 2020. It started on the 25th July 2020, as a two-day digital festival with 8 stages and over 60 artists. More than 1 million people from all over the globe enjoyed the experience together on the magical island Papilionem.

Artists were filmed live with a green screen and then streamed in a virtual digital space with fantastic designs. Audiences from around the world could immerse themselves from wherever they were. 

See here how it was.

See here how it was made.

2. AR Festival map. 

I personally have a terrible sense of direction and I can easily get lost in my own town. So you can imagine what it is like when I am at a festival, and apparently I am not the only one. Maps are always a must, although, let’s be honest: we all lose them, get them wet or use them as  a paper aeroplane after two beers. Therefore, AR maps are a great asset for this sort of moment. We are seeing how some cities are integrating this solution on a normal daily basis for their citizens and little by little festivals are also getting there.

Here an example of Helsinki city AR 3D map for their citizens to participate in the budgeting of the city. A great way to interact and get yourself around a space, city or festival.

3. AR Posters.  

This is an innovative solution for Festivals to display more information in a cool and interactive way. From games to 3D images that come to life, it’s a great way to attract new audiences and generate a wow factor in this new technological world. 

See the example here  for the Festival of Regions in Austria. They implemented AR to different posters and added additional useful content videos and a deconstruction of the designs of the posters with a sustainability message. 

This is something cool and interactive and that can be added to any static image on the poster with no need to download an external app. You only need your smartphone and good internet connectivity.

4. Augmented reality treasure hunting/ festival trail. 

How cool would it be to be able to see impossible art works integrated in the city or in a festival site? How cool would it be to have a treasure hunting game during the dead hours of the festival, while your mates are having a nap! Well, this is happening now. You only need a smartphone and good internet connection and you can enjoy the site, the city and your festival to its maximum potential with Augmented reality games and art trails.

A really cool example is the Signal festival in Prague, that is integrating art pieces in different points of the monumental city. See it here

5. Holographic message.

How many QR codes have I scanned in the last two years? Restaurant menus, NHS, Airports, gyms, shops,... Well, now that we are all used to it, let’s make it cool! We can now scan a QR code on our favourite festival poster, billboard, newsletter,...and get to see and hear one of the main artists as a hologram in front of us! Yes, like if they were in front of us, talking to us. An exclusive and personable message that gets us closer to the artist and of course, the festival. One of the best things about this new technology is that we don’t need to download an external app. I know, I have said this before, but we are put off when we need to download another app, so this is a plus! We can enjoy the hologram in front of us by simply scanning the QR code. Easy! 

See an example here of Anne Marie holographic message for Capital Up Close events with Barclaycard

If you're a client and have an immersive project that you'd like to make a reality get started here; or if you're a creator with immersive skills join Blend Market here. For all questions or for more information please get in touch.