Who, what, when?

Posted on March 2, 2012 at 22:39, by pigasus

I’m a street festival newbie. I joined the festival organisation and volunteered to work in the publicity team: traditional tricks and social media. I got on board because of the “job description” – I hadn’t even visited the events of previous years.


And that means that you might find yourself all at sea. Fortunately, every successful project starts with a wad of questions: What? Where? To whom? And why?

And the answer is: Arabia Street Festival is a free event taking place 12.5. in Arabianranta, Helsinki, which revels in recycling, art, dance and music. We mean to make a magnificent urban event where everybody can feel at home – babies and pensioners, hippies and hipsters, rappers and garbage pickers. We have a very special treat this year a street art exhibition called Buffattu which features some of the biggest names in Finland.


And why: For the love of street art and having a good time outdoors. For this is how you create living and breathing urbancity culture and great team spirit.


Obviously, the questions don’t end here. Actually, the way to the very core of festival production is to relentlessly repeat: Who? What? How? Huh?


Who does?
What does he do?
How is this done?
Huh? (Always good to make sure you got things right?)


Arabia Street Festival has seen many organisers and partners over the years. The productional core is the district association Artova and its coordinators and this year Taneli the producer calls the shots. The volunteers and other active contributors have most of the responsibility. The question “who” is very important in the beginning: “Who’s in? Hands up!”


Roughly speaking you can say that the street festival partners fall into one of two categories: those who produce content for the event and those who are asked for money or favours.


At the heart of all co-operation lies the question of how we can help each other out, how do you want to participate in the festival. Do you want to put together some kind of act or show? Good. Are you an artist or a musician? Good! Do you want to become a festival sponsor? Good? Not sound interesting to you, well, do you have any suggestions? Some potential partners join the team with enthusiasm, others need a bit of persuasion. The crucial bit is that you find the common denominator, whether it is locality, recycling ideology, love of graffiti, a high-visibility advertising spot or arranging something fun for kids.


The team of partners will probably evolve and change over time, probably all the way until the end of the production. When new needs and ideas come up, the first thing you need to ask is: who? Say “pretty please”, and In all likelihood you’ll find someone.



Translation by Pigasus Translations.