Colours organisers bringing smaller alternative festival to Ostrava

Colours of Ostrava 2018, photo: Libor Kukal

Instead of the Czech Republic’s biggest music festival, Colours of Ostrava, which is cancelled because of Covid-19, its operators are running a four-day “Nonfestival” at the same post-industrial site next week. Wednesday and Friday will deliver shows, Saturday the Melting Pot discussion forum and Thursday a free “fan day”. I asked Colours spokesman Jiří Sedlák what visitors could look forward to.

“They can expect a very nice festival atmosphere. There is a very limited capacity of 1,000 visitors each day, so a very pleasant atmosphere and a lot of space.

“There will be a roof in case of rain and grass for sitting around and it will be a meeting with our fans.

Cirk La Putyka | Photo: Cirk La Putyka

“Of course, we will provide a programme, so the original days of the Colours of Ostrava festival are the same as the Nonfestival days.

“We are starting on Wednesday 15 with a show from Cirk La Putyka, one of our best contemporary circus companies.

“It will be followed by, and also kind of merge with, a Tata Bojs concert.”

You have a capacity of 1,000 a day. Normally people travel long distances to go to Colours of Ostrava. How much interest has there been in tickets for this Nonfestival event?

“The first evening, on Wednesday, is almost sold out.

“For Friday [featuring N.O.H.A., Kapitán Demo, minus123minut] interest is quite high, but we still have tickets available, and I think it’s the same for Melting Pot.

“So if people travel last minute to Ostrava, it’s possible to get into the Nonfestival on Friday and Saturday. And also of course to the free night on Thursday.

“I can add that there will be a lot of discounts for people coming to Ostrava and staying in Ostrava hotels, which is arranged by the City of Ostrava.”

Apart from the limited attendance, what other restrictions will be in place, in view of the coronavirus situation?

Colours of Ostrava,  photo: Ana Briceño

“Of course we will have special coronavirus hygiene, which will be heightened, for visitors, for staff and for bands. At each stop there will be disinfectant.

“Fortunately, since it is outdoors we don’t have to wear facemasks.”

The next actual Colours of Ostrava will take place in mid-July next year. Artists like The Killers and LP had been due to be playing now. How close do you think the lineup next year will resemble the planned lineup for 2020?

“I think it will resemble to a very high percentage. It’s hard to say so long in advance, but it’s really true that the biggest headliners are confirmed for next year.

“And the majority of bands from this year will be present also next year. That means the smaller bands – like from the Drive stage, the Electronic stage and the smaller stages – will also be present.”