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Underage Festival

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Underage Festival

Underage Festival
The Domino 15th Anniversary Stage at Underage Festival 2008
Genre Various, primarily Rock, Pop, Indie
Dates Early August (2nd/8th/10th)
Location(s) Victoria Park, London
Years active 2007-present
Founded by Sam Kilcoyne
Eat Your Own Ears
Official Website

The Underage Festival is a music festival which takes place in Victoria Park, London. It is open to 13 to under 17 year olds, and only those within this age limit are allowed entry to the festival. In the two years since its creation, the festival has taken place at the beginning of August each year. There are five main stages, the Converse Century Main Stage, the NME Stage, the Topman New Music Stage, the Domino Stage (aptly named the "Domino 15th Anniversary Stage" for the label's 15th anniversary of creation in 2008), and the Red Bull Bedroom Jam Stage. As well as this, some of the smaller features included the Habbo Dj Tent, the CM Tower Hamlets Music Space Stage, and the Artrocker Signing Tent. 2008's event also included a MySpace bus, where secret sets and interviews with bands took place.

The festival evolved out of a series of club nights held in the Sam Kilcoyne, (the teenage son of Barry 7 from Add N to (X) and current member of the band S.C.U.M) after he was refused admission to a Buzzcocks gig due to his age (he was fourteen years old at the time). These grew popular with preteens and teenagers, even receiving press coverage in broadsheet national newspapers (The Guardian, to name one) and the BBC's arts programmes who reported this as a "youthquake".

2012 Festival

The event was scheduled to be held on 31 August. On 27 July it was announced that due to production issues and the new location, the festival had been cancelled for 2012. Organisers stated they were hopeful of returning to the old site in 2013.[1]

2011 Festival

The event was held on 5 August 2011 at Victoria Park, London and tickets for the event went on sale in January 2011. The first line-up of this year's acts was announced on 8 March by Huw Stephens live on BBC Radio 1.[2] Huw Stephens announced that Yasmin, Frankie & The Heartstrings, The Midnight Beast, Yaaks, Spark, Roll Deep, Giggs, Janelle Monae, Devlin, Fugative The Chapman Family, Maverick Sabre, Brother, Cocknbullkid, Florrie, Crystal Fighters, with Bombay Bicycle Club headlining. The Red Bull Bedroom Jam Stage is to be headlined by My Passion, whilst other acts on the stage include Page 44, Blitz Kids And Autumn In Disguise, as well as many more. The New Roundhouse Rising stage was opened by Younghearts, an up-and-coming London based indie band with a forthcoming single "Isolation" due to be released soon.[3][4]

2010 Festival

The tickets for this year's festival first went on sale in early January, where it took place in Victoria Park, London, on 1 August 2010. The line-up consisted of newly famous acts such as Ellie Goulding, Tinie Tempah and Chiddy Bang, as well as some acts such as Hadouken! and Tinchy Stryder returning for their second Underage Festival.

Tango Stage Converse Stage Topman CTRL Stage Youth Music Stage Red Bull Bedroom Jam Community Music Stage
  • Akala
  • Deshi Movement
  • Gold Future Joy Machine
  • Mammoth Sound
  • Naga MC
  • Scorcher
  • Shiva
  • Sleepless Beauty
  • Tantrums
  • Unicorn Kid
  • Heights

2009 Festival

Soon after the 2008 festival, Eat Your Own Ears announced in an email to fans that the 2009 festival would again take place in Victoria Park in east London, on 2 August 2009. Tickets for the event were available from early February. During his BBC Introducing... show for Radio 1, Huw Stephens announced some of the acts playing the festival, including headliners, The Pigeon Detectives.[5] Stage Artrocker Stage Topman CTRL Stage Youth Music Stage

2008 Festival

The 2008 festival took place on 8 August 2008. The event was a success, with around 10,000 fans attending. Many queued for hours prior to the gates opening to gain entry.[6] Headliners included Gallows, Dizzee Rascal, Foals, and The Dykeenies.

Converse Century
Main Stage
NME Stage Topman New Music Stage Domino 15th
Red Bull Bedroom
CM Tower Hamlets
Music Space Stage
Habbo Dj Tent
  • Lo-Fi Culture Scene
  • Underground Heroes
  • Why Whiskey Why
  • Goldielocks
  • Alex Starling
  • Fifth Element
  • Toy Toy
  • Temporarily Blank
  • The Purple Socks
  • Risofthescorned
  • Directive
  • The Horrors were originally scheduled to play the Main Stage, but had to pull out due to recording commitments.[7] They were replaced by Dizzee Rascal. Mystery Jets were also scheduled to open the festival with a set on the Main Stage, but pulled out just a few days before due to their lead singer Blaine Harrison being in hospital.[8] They were replaced with Kid Harpoon.
  • Those Dancing Days performed on the Main Stage after Care Bears on Fire instead of the NME Stage, as previously billed.
  • OCD were selected on podcast by Radio 1, in the week before the festival took place.
  • Tim Burgess, lead singer of The Charlatans, played a DJ set on the Main Stage between each of the three main headliners.
  • Gallows' headline set included an appearance by Lethal Bizzle, for a special cover of The Ruts' "Staring At The Rude Bois". As well as this, lead vocalist from hardcore punk band Blackhole - and Gallows' lead singer Frank Carter's younger brother - Rich Carter sang vocals on a number of tracks towards the end of the set.
  • XX Teens set featured an appearance by famous anti-war protestor Brian Haw, who is currently the longest residing resident of the peace camp situated outside Parliament Square. Following set-closer "For Brian Haw", Haw gave a ten-minute speech regarding the War in Iraq.[9]
  • Polly Scattergood designed and curated a special shed for the festival, "Pollyworld", which featured small acoustic performances by herself and a number of other acts.
  • A Girl Called Kate won an NME and Red Bull Bedroom Jam competition to play at the festival. Their video for 'Ctrl Alt Cheat' was voted the winner by fans and a panel of judges.
  • Also featured was the Artrocker Signing Tent, which allowed fans to have merchandise signed by bands such as The Maccabees, Foals and Bombay Bicycle Club.
  • The MySpace bus featured an acoustic set by Bombay Bicycle Club,[6] as well as an interview with Dizzee Rascal for website need2know.[10]

2007 Festival

The 2007 festival took place on 10 August 2007, and featured the following artists-


  1. ^ "tickets on sale today for Underage Festival the Shoreditch Park event for 13 to 17 year olds only". Festivals. 23 March 2012. Retrieved 7 April 2012. 
  2. ^!/underagefest
  3. ^
  4. ^ Saoud-Easton, Eve-Yasmine (6 August 2011). "Underage Festival 2011 – Teen Party of The Year!". Music. Superstar Magazine. Retrieved 7 April 2012. 
  5. ^ "Pigeon Detectives To Headline Underage Festival".  
  6. ^ a b "Foals, Gallows, Glasvegas play Underage festival".  
  7. ^ "Horrors will not play underage". The Horum ( 
  8. ^ "Mystery Jets cancel more festival appearances".  
  9. ^ "XX Teens speak about political protest during Underage performance".  
  10. ^ "need2know interviews Dizzee Rascal at the Underage Festival 2008".  

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