Record crowds at buskers festival
"Fun, fun, fun and more fun." That's the description of this year's Southland Buskers Festival by organisers, who say it was the best one yet.
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Festival organiser Jodi Wright, who also organises the World Buskers Festival in Christchurch, said this year's festival was hands-down the best one so far.
"Fun, fun, fun and more fun. We'll be back next year."
"Southlanders have embraced the spirit of street performers and have come out like never before."
The festival, which began on Thursday and wrapped up yesterday, drew "much bigger" crowds than previous years, reflecting a real coming of age for the event.
"The best one ever. It is a mix to do with great weather, great crowds and a great lineup."
Street performers used to try to catch people while they were going to the bank or the supermarket, luring them in with a joke or trick, she said.
"These days it's not like that, the show is the destination for the people, and that makes a big difference," she said.
People came prepared with blankets and picnic baskets, ready to settle in for a show.
It always takes a while for new festivals to become established in a community, usually between five and eight years, she said.
"[The] community's starting to trust the quality of the performers and know they're going to get a good show."
All of the acts were fresh from the World Buskers Festival in Christchurch the week before and were from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Performer Lisa Lottie, said the Southland Buskers Festival was a great one to be involved with. The performer, whose act "Bend it like Barbie" had onlookers captivated by contortion and hula hoop feats, said it was her first time in Invercargill and she would definitely recommend the festival to friends.
"It's hard to compare [to other festivals] it depends on what kind of people [are in the audience], what kind of weather, what kind of other acts are in that location. This is a great festival."
The Southland Times