1- The weather
Warm if possible. Blue sky and sun. No to mud and rain. Stop pretending you're having fun. Alcohol was the only way to make you forget this terrible weather and now we make fun out of you.
The less you carry stuff the lighter the dance move, the easier the body contact and the better reaching the front of the stage without feeling like stepping into an overcrowded and angry train station. Also, while you're high on something, your super duper waterproof jacket could end up missing. At least when it's sunny, you'll just loose a flip flop but that's ok, because wandering barefoot on dry land feels fucking great. When body travels light, mind does too.
2- The size
Small. Because small makes you feel cosy and relaxed.
Bye to the bouncers shouting at you because you're standing next to the VIP corner. Small festival save your time and allows you to wander around without getting lost. No corporate-looking festival booklet leashed around your neck with an infinite list of stages and time slots. We're here to enjoy music and have fun right? Since when festival has become an airport terminal? The band hasn't even finished playing that you've already your eyes on the next one. 30mn set, ticked. Changeover. Walking to the next stage, adding up an extra 10mn...
Small gives you enough time to see each bands and hang out with your friends.
Small means you don't have to worry about the signal you've lost on your phone and the friends you've lost between food stall 2, toilet cubicle 20, stage 5 and cider bar 15 because in a small festival, you'll see them every where, anywhere, standing on the corner of the stage, having a chat with this amazing band you bumped into last night and who was offering you some poppers on the beach and you could offer them to play boules in the following afternoon.
3- The line-up
Pressure and high expectation given to the purveyor of eargasm, the highly skilled, well organised festival managers, booking agents, promoters. They better be open minded, eclectic in their choice of music and must have excellent taste.
A good intuition is helpful. Which bands would fit this type of festival? It's kinda similar to writting a storyline, finding the right bands is like communicating the right message to the right people. Much effort and organisational skills needed for tailoring something good.
4- The performance
A festival needs musicians that can give you a little more than 5 very neat tracks. We are not in school listening to our teacher's multiplication tables.
Improvisation, positive attitude and charisma on stage are essential. So I guess, it's their ability to communicate something and exchange with the crowd. Don't let them fall asleep.
4- The people
A good crowd depends on the elements stated above. Weather, size, soundsystem, line-up and great performance that make us connect all together... and also the fun, flexible, music lovers friends. Let the magic happens!