Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Announces New Exhibit - Common Ground: The Music Festival Experience

Tuesday, March 11: 8 a.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
New exhibit opens April 25th

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum presents its latest featured exhibit, Common Ground: The Music Festival Experience, which will open on Friday, April 25, 2014. The exhibition will be an immersive and engaging look at the music festival as more than just an outdoor concert, but as a community experience.

Whether it‘s forging human bonds, building a sense of community, providing broad exposure for musical artists – both old and new – or as one of the most important economic engines of the music industry, the story of the music festival is inextricably linked with music’s powerful cultural impact around the globe.

Fan vote and fan-curated exhibit

Beginning Tuesday, March 11 fans around the world will have the opportunity to vote for the Top 10 rock festival performance moments of all-time. From Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Bob Dylan’s performance in Newport in 1965 to Daft Punk’s Coachella performance in 2006, fans will vote for 10 breakout performance and highlights from the last 50 years of festivals. The fan vote will close on Wednesday, April 2 at 5 p.m. ET. The Top 10 festival moments of all-time as voted by fans will be revealed on Wednesday, April 23. The fan-curated Top 10 rock festival moments will be presented in a video montage at the entrance of the exhibit.

As fans around the world experience this year's biggest festivals firsthand and share tagged images of the vibrant and diverse sights that surround them, the Rock Hall will capture and present those moments via large monitors on the fourth floor of the Museum near the entrance of the exhibit.

Exhibit snapshot

Spanning two floors of the Museum, the exhibit will surround visitors with the sights and sounds of a rock festival to evoke the experience in a visceral way, utilizing video of the iconic festivals of the past (Newport, Monterey, Woodstock, Wattstax and more) and the vibrant, constantly evolving events of the present (Coachella, Bonnaroo, Glastonbury and more), with an emphasis on establishing a “you are there” environment. Several floor to ceiling photographs of festival fans will invite visitors to examine and interpret the fan experience and become a part of the crowd. Ambient sounds will fill the space: weather, bands tuning up, people talking, radio ads and news reports. Visitors will connect with the intangible elements inherent in the festival experience – identifying with a community, participating in a social event and being part of the creative process.

The first level of the exhibit will take visitors through a fast-paced history of popular music festivals with large photographs, artifacts and short documentary films.

·       Birth of the Modern Festival (From Spirituals to Swing, the Newport Festivals)

·       Youth Quake (Monterey Pop, Woodstock, Isle of Wight)

·       Festivals with a Purpose (Live Aid, Wattstax, Soul to Soul)

·       Europe (Glastonbury, Roskilde, Fuji Rock, Pink Pop)

·       Modern Destination Festival (Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, Coachella)

·       Electronic Dance Music (Electric Daisy Carnival, Tomorrowland, Creamfields) 

The second level of the exhibit will present an immersive experience designed to place the visitor squarely into the festival experience. The space will represent a performance tent at a festival and visitors will encounter a 20 minute film representing a fast moving day at a festival told through a cinematic mash-up of performances, sights, sounds, words and communal energy of iconic music festivals from the past seven decades. The main screen will be complimented with synchronized images and lighting that will evoke the feeling of day turning into night.



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