A few weeks ago (23.07.2015) I had a phone interview with Anya della Croce, programmer of For Noise Festival in Lausanne-Pully which will take place next week (20-22 August 2015). She told me about For Noise and its programme so that I gained an insight on the coolest job on the planet! 😉
Thank you to Aline Méan for arranging the phone interview. And of course big thanks to Anya della Croce for taking the time to kindly answer my questions!
The Liberation: On what do you base yourself to choose the programme for For Noise, a rather small festival if compared to Paléo and Montreux and more focused on artists and bands who are not necessarily familiar to everybody?
- Anya della Croce: Yes, certainly we try to offer a varied pallet between artists who are a bit more well known because, even if we are small, we still need to attract people, we focus on discoveries and we give an important space to the Swiss scene. I travel a lot during the year, I visit different festivals to discover different artists in Canada, Holland, in Europe in general and this is what allows us to offer such a varied programme. The other thing is that we base ourselves on the news of the artists, if they have a new album, if they are touring. We can’t really afford to have artists coming only for For Noise because it would be way too expensive. So let’s say it also depends on the planning of the artists.
The Liberation: Is it only you in charge of the programme or are you a team?
- Anya della Croce: We are a committee, there are many passionate about music so we discuss it all together and then it’s me who takes care of booking everything, of taking contact, discuss with the agents and the artists. But we discuss a lot because For Noise was born out of this, from a team of music passionates who wanted to invite the bands they loved. That’s how this festival was born.
The Liberation: Which is your favourite artist of For Noise this year?
- Anya della Croce: Uff there are many, there are many. I’m extremely happy to welcome Patrick Watson, a Canadian artists who will play on Thursday evening (ndr. 20 August 2015). This is really something I’m looking forward to. I’ve seen him many times in concert and I’ve been trying to invite him at For Noise for quite a long time and it never worked out because of the tour planning. This is really something for which I’m really looking forward to. Otherwise there are plenty of others but if I have to say one that’d be him.
The Liberation : Is there a band you would like to play at For Noise but that you haven’t had the chance to invite yet ?
- Anya della Croce: There are many but I won’t tell you which ones because it brings bad luck. (laughs)
The Liberation : Fair enough, that’s a good answer ! (laughs) What do you think about the competitiveness with other festivals of the region (Paléo, Montreux Jazz, Caribana,…) ?
- Anya della Croce: So, there are two things : there is local competitiveness, as you say. It’s clear we can’t compete with the big festivals because we don’t have the same budgets. Then there’s also a question of touring period so it’s often this which makes that some artists will rather come and play at For Noise, others more likely at Paléo, Montreux or Caribana depending on if they are touring in the month of June, July or August. And then, moreover, what is complicated is the competitiveness worldwide I’d say, because there are more and more festivals. In particular over our weekend we find ourselves facing festivals like Pukkelpop, Lowlands or Paredes de Coura, which is a big festival in Portugal. There are two huge festivals in Eastern Europe, I think they’re both in Poland. So this makes it complicated to sign an artist if he has 10 other offers from 10 other festivals over the same weekend, it’s just not doable.
The Liberation : Why should people come and listen to the artists at For Noise?
- Anya della Croce: What I particularly like about this festival is its human size. We don’t have big screens on the sides of the big stage, there’s really the possibility to have a real contact with the artist and to see him up close because it’s small. And this is something the artists truly appreciate, I can take the example of Franz Ferdinand who came here two years ago and who are coming back this year with the project FFS (Franz Ferdinand & Sparks). It’s something which really marked them because they’re more used to play in front of thousands and thousands of people. They told me “We could see people’s faces!” which rarely happens. There’s a proximity that is nice for them as well.
The Liberation: Yes, that’s totally true. Exactly, about Franz Ferdinand were they happy to come back also with another project?
- Anya della Croce: Absolutely. I haven’t talked to them yet, I will do it on the 20th of August. But it was pretty quick and I think it’s because they appreciated their visit at For Noise two years ago. Because I imagine there were many other offers and I’d hope that it’s also them who said “We want to go back to For Noise!”. But I’ll be able to confirm it only at the festival.
The Liberation : All right, I’ll ask you again at the festival. Thanks a lot for your time!