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Contributed by Rashida Rahim


FORNOISE in Pully A festival making itself heard


or the past 15 years every August, the old parking, the football fields and pétanque area belonging to the borough of Pully are converted into a pulsing, vibrating creative venue, featuring alternative musical artists from Switzerland and afar. The festival is the brainchild of (the then 21-year-old) Olivier Meylan and friends, who back in 1997 wanted to celebrate the fifth year of a now extinct Abraxas Music Club showcasing local new musicians looking to play to a willing audience. And so the Festival FORNOISE was born.


Back in the day, approximately 800 festival-goers attended each night. Last year, up to 8000 revellers came over the three day event— quite a feat for a small-sized festival that has brought in names like Jarvis Cocker, The National, The James Taylor Quartet and Pink Martini to name but a few. What makes the FORNOISE festival so successful is that the organisers are passionate about sharing their love of live music. For twelve months, a committed crew of 4-10 people work on and off year-round to balance the books, investing almost half of the previous year’s earnings to attract new acts, gain the interest of potential sponsors, tempt the press and whet the public’s appetite with their annual Christmas Day party at one of the Lausanne’s night clubs. Then as the day of the opening act in August grows closer, the volunteers increase to around 150. Some have the gruelling task of working for 18 hour days for almost two weeks setting up the stage and then dismantling it the day after the festival; others look after the lighting, the sound systems; yet others work at the bar, or cook for the temporary tented staff that live on site during the festival to ensure it all runs smoothly. Some look after the merchandising, and others are lucky

enough to chauffeur the bands back and forth. Hello Switzerland met up with Olivier the festival’s director, Anya Della Croce, talent buyer for the festival and some of the other hard-working people that make the music happen at FORNOISE. So what makes your festival different from all the others? Olivier: the festival was born out of a passion for music and each year we aim to be better, each year we learn something new. At the end of the day, we don’t earn a cent from this – all the profits go into the next event. Anya, you book the acts – how do you choose who will be in the line-up? Anya: We work with agents that represent the artists we are interested in. It used to be we had to contact them, but over the years our reputation has grown and we now have agents contacting us too, which is a flattering recognition of the hard work we’ve done over the years. We also have a loyal public following that expect a certain style, so we are constantly listening to music – recommended, sent in, while travelling. Once we have a number of acts they are shortlisted by the Festival’s committee. It is then up to Olivier and me, with a strong input from “the budget”, to decide on who we actually get. Eddy Cosandey, you put your professional experience to good use during the festival. What do you do exactly? Eddy: I normally work as an electrician at the Central Vaud University Hospital (CHUV), and for the festival I volunteer my expertise to run a team of three electricians. We’re responsible for all the lighting, helping create the ambiance around the site and making sure that everything is safe. Anne Pittet, in your daily life you manage a restaurant but you are also

the festival’s administrative cashier. What has been the best moment of the festivals history so far? Anne: I love the atmosphere when the festival is coming together, when the stage is being built and you see all effort and hard work becoming reality. David Clavien, you are a hydrogeologist turned teacher in the real world and at the festival you are in charge of who gets into the festival/ ticketing. What are you most looking forward to this year? David: “Digitalism” (a German electro house duo) and “Granddaddy” (an American indie rock band) that split in 2006 but have just reformed this year! FORNOISE runs 23-25 August. The festival welcomes volunteers. For more information contact: Rashida Rahim British born but Bengali-Italian raised, Rashida Rahim is the eternal expat currently residing in Lausanne and despite being a technical trainer, has strong leanings towards all that is artsy-fartsy.

Hello Switzerland for Expatriates, Summer Edition 2012  

Hello Switzerland is written by expats for expats living in Switzerland. Designed mainly for English speakers, the magazine contains feature...

Hello Switzerland for Expatriates, Summer Edition 2012  

Hello Switzerland is written by expats for expats living in Switzerland. Designed mainly for English speakers, the magazine contains feature...