The concept of music and arts festivals can’t be new to you. But what Wonderfruit tries to bring to the table is a lot more important than fun in the sun.
Held every year since 2014 for four days at The Fields in Siam Country Club in Pattaya, Thailand, Wonderfruit has many of your usual festival suspects (music acts, food, art installations, workshops), but also places a big emphasis on sustainability and community participation. Plus, it’s also family-friendly!
Architects use sustainable materials to build stages, single-use plastics are banned in The Fields, waste is upcycled, and ongoing conversations are held in-festival and outside it to keep sustainability efforts going. In 2017, Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organization (TGO) even certified Wonderfruit as a carbon neutral festival after it reduced its carbon emission to zero. That, ladies and gents, is pretty groundbreaking!
And they’re not stopping there, according to Wonderfruit director Katrina Razon. Katrina, who is also a DJ and activist (her pursuits include wildlife conservation, child welfare and environmental sustainability), talked to us about this year’s festival highlights and Wonderfruit’s plans for the future.
Five favourite Wonderfruit moments
#1 The Solar Stage
“Every moment around the Solar Stage between sunset and sunrise is very special,” Katrina said. “From the Red Bull skydivers arriving during techno marching band MEUTE’s set where the audience gave a sitting ovation with the band to Stavroz’s live performance and Young Marco’s set as the sun rose behind the mountains.”
#2 Scratch Talks
“All of the Scratch Talks that took place at Ab Roger’s designed Eco Pavilion were incredible. Leaders from different fields across the world gave a keynote presentation. Innovator Daan Roosegaarde’s talk about how he invented the world’s first smog tower which converts air pollution into diamonds was awe-inspiring to listen to.”
“The diversity of food is always a highlight for me. Everyone is encouraged to try all the different vendors to the Wonder Feasts that are prepared by world-acclaimed chefs in an intimate setting.”
#4 The people
“Seeing communities from all over the world gather together for the course of the weekend. It always amazes me to see how many different lives intersect throughout the course of the festival. Meaningful connections are made and to me that is so beautiful to experience. At Wonderfruit, there is something for everyone across all ages. From Camp Wonder to the 100 wellness activities offered. You are bound to meet interesting groups of people.”
#5 The element of discovery
“Everyone who attends Wonderfruit understands that they must explore the festival in a similar manner that they would explore a new city. From discovering a local Thai band to finding the Cheese Shack, our Japanese-inspired karaoke space hidden in a tree. You can discover your inner child and treat the festival as if it’s your playground. It isn’t solely a music festival – it is a lifestyle festival that celebrates architecture, food, art, music, and global culture.”
What to expect at Wonderfruit 2019
“We are looking forward to grow the architectural wonders across our site and fostering our global community further. The arts is an incredible medium to bring people together. To grow Wonderfruit as a force for good is a huge driving force for us as festival organisers. We are growing the brand outside of the festival grounds and exploring new events in a similar fashion.”
Read also: Take the quiz: Where should you spend New Year’s Eve?