The Breakspoll Experience


Breakspoll caught us off guard last year – we didn’t even know we’d been nominated until the last week of voting. If it weren’t for the fact that Simon Shackleton (Elite Force) had played a show in Nelson just the previous week, and had joined us for one of our big Farmily dinners – we would have been at a loss when we were asked who would accept the award for us if we won (thanks so much for that, Simon!).

Photo by Xavier Walker

This year, we had a representative firmly planted in London – our former Site Manager, Mike Brewer, who packed up and moved to the UK for a job with the 2012 Summer Olympics just days after we’d wrapped Shambhala 2011. He was kind enough to do up a little blog post about his Breakspoll experience:

As anyone who’s been to Shambhala can tell you there’s something about the place, the people and the atmosphere that makes you want to keep coming back. This made packing my bags after the festival last year to move to London, England a tough choice. Despite the vibrant music scene in London I found myself settling comfortably in to the local pub culture and the world of electronic music seemed a far off memory…until the finalists for the 2012 Breakspoll awards were announced. Obivously the chance to attend and potentially accept an award on behalf of Shambhala was something I couldn’t miss!

When the black cab dropped us off under London Bridge you could already hear the beats thumping from inside Cable and there was a line up stretching the length of the block. The club had three rooms with different DJ’s playing in each one and every room was packed. Shortly before midnight everyone crowded in to the main room and the awards were presented. For the second year in a row after announcing the finalists in the “Best Large Event” category they called out Shambhala Music Festival as the winner. Accepting the award on stage in front of a club full of pumped up, breakbeat music fans is an experience I won’t soon forget. As someone who normally works behing the scenes to make events happen, the opportunity to be on the main stage and feel that energy from the crowd was amazing.

Other big winners on the night included A-Skillz, Ghetto Funk, Krafty Kuts and Stanton Warriors as well as The Freestylers for Outstanding Contribution to the genre.

Photo by Xavier Walker

After the awards wrapped up the club came alive again with world class breakbeat DJ’s playing sets until the wee hours of the morning. As I wandered between the three rooms taking it all in I got to meet all sorts of people. There was a Canadian couple who were huge fans of Shambhala and who had planned their European holiday around being able to attend the Breakspoll awards. There was a group of Spanish festival producers who had been nominated as well and were keen to exchange tips and ideas about what goes in to making a world class festival. There was also Elite Force who took a few minutes out to chat about his experiences at other festivals like Glastonbury and how they compared.

For everyone that wasn’t able to be at Cable with us last weekend, I want to say again: “At Shambhala we always say ‘It’s all about the people on the dance floor’ so winning an award that’s voted on by the fans means the world. On behalf of everyone back in Canada, thanks for voting and we hope to see you on the dance floor this summer!”

Mike Brewer
 
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