The Secret Garden festival organisers don’t take no guff.
Early in the piece at the weekend’s event in Camden, creative director Adam Lewis apparently spotted two
asshats attendees wearing blackface (which, as previously discussed, is never OK) and quickly swung into action.
Speaking with The BRAG, Lewis says he confronted the pair, who were apparently dressed as “rappers”, and unceremoniously marched them to the showers to scrub off their “costumes”.
“We immediately made it clear that it was unacceptable, and I walked them directly to the showers,” he told The BRAG. “It was a brief but really disappointing moment amongst an otherwise vibrant and wonderful weekend.”
“We’re a festival that prides ourselves on being open and welcoming to people from all walks of life,” he continued, adding that despite the festival’s dress-up friendly policy, “Anything that makes people feel unwelcome or uncomfortable on the basis of who they are is completely unacceptable to us”.
“As I mentioned, it’s a big bummer that this happened, especially given how clear the community has been about this being not okay,” he said. “It’s a big topic of discussion in the broader community and we’re hoping this stupid move by a couple of dickheads doesn’t overshadow everything else that happened.”
In response to the influx of kudos that he’s received for the way he handled business, Lewis has also taken to Twitter to add that “It had to be done. no pleasure in it. quite a demoralising experience really. thanks for the kind words xx”
@DJYwrites it had to be done. no pleasure in it. quite a demoralising experience really. thanks for the kind words xx
— lifeguard lewis (@adam_lewis) February 29, 2016
Thus proving that he’s the hero the Australian music festival scene needs right now.
As Lewis also pointed out, bar this one incident, the 2016 instalment of Secret Garden was a huge success, with tickets selling out a few days prior for a breathtaking lineup that featured acts like Gang Of Youths, Matt Corby and Raury.
There were also minimal drug arrests and no reported overdoses at the 2016 event, with Music Feeds reviewer Chelsea Deeley referring to it as “pure, unabashed silliness” and adding, “But, when even the security dudes look like they’re having fun, you know you’re onto a winner.”
Check out a gallery of all our best snaps from Secret Garden 2016 below.
UPDATE 29/02/16, 3.00pm: Adam Lewis has further commented on the incident, telling Music Feeds the festival will not tolerate anything that makes other punters feel “uncomfortable or marginalised”
Gallery: Secret Garden Festival, Camden NSW 2016 / Photos By Maria Boyadgis