IT’S ONLY been a day since we left Worthy Farm and with it, the magic of five days spent frolicking across the Glastonbury Festival site that is rumoured to be the size of Bristol, and this year had a record 200,000 attendees. But in just one day alone, an urge to return to 50,000 steps a day and a tent as our home has developed, in unfathomably strong form.
The Glastonbury devotee lays within all of us, you just need one experience to unleash it. So, as I shed a tear whilst scrolling through my camera roll, I present to you the moments of Glastonbury 2023. Hopefully this fills the hole until Glastonbury 2024.
The mysterious Churnups slot at Pyramid Stage was confirmed as The Foo Fighters
When Glastonbury tactfully avoided questions on the ‘Churnups’, an act scheduled to play at the Pyramid Stage on Friday night, rumours began to spread. First it was Pulp, then Blur, and then the Foo Fighters. They played the Pyramid stage in exactly the same slot they performed their first Glastonbury show 25 years ago, and it was magical.
Photo by Anna Barclay
Cate Blanchett makes an appearance at Sparks show
Cate Blanchett danced her way through Sparks’ The Girl Is Crying In Her Latte, a song in which she also features in the music video, and was also spotted grooving backstage to ShyGirl shortly after. What a woman.
Jake Shears wows in 5 minute performance at NYC Downlow
Jake Shears, one half of the Scissor Sisters, treated NYC Downlow to a special 5 minute performance of Let’s Have a Kiki and Filthy Gorgeous before Detroit DJ Rick Wade wowed with a set from the Gods. And with a backdrop of queens vogueing, the atmosphere was incredible.
There was a proposal at Elton John
Of course, she said yes!
Ezra Collective joins the crowd
Splitting the crowd into left and right, the 5 members of the Ezra Collective then made their way through their crafted corridor, instruments in hand, to perform a melody of jazz tracks for the screaming crowd. It was the stand out moment for many.
Mik Artistik DJ set from hot air balloon
Performing at Glastonbury every year since 2007, Mik Artistik used the 2023 occasion to switch things up a bit. This year, they took to the skies to perform a secret set on Saturday evening, in a hot air balloon.
Lil Nas X slays with stage outfits and brings out Jack Harlow to perform
Stepping out in white leather trousers with thigh high fur in the 27 degree heat is quite something. But isn’t that exactly the definition of Lil Nas X anyway? The crowd felt like it was jumping throughout the entirety and when Jack Harlow was brought out to perform Industry Baby, we all jumped higher.
Felix Buxton from Basement Jaxx makes a special appearance at Truth Stage on Saturday night
Joined by a flurry of dancers and live musicians too. A wonderful surprise.
Fred Again plays again and again and again
A headliner on the Other Stage, Fred Again marked a new kind of performance for the legacy of Glastonbury and it did not disappoint. On Saturday he revealed that he would also be performing B2B with Blessed Madonna at The Temple, a stage that was swiftly closed off shortly after due to the crowds. And if you knew the right people, you would have seen him also perform in a more intimate setting, at a secret, invite only, stage in Shangri-La.
Chris Martin does a steward shift for Oxfam
If you happened to be at Gate A on Friday afternoon between 2-3pm you may have spotted a familiar face ushering you through. Supposedly Chris Martin does a shift each year for Glastonbury and 2023 was no different.
Llamas, cats and owls put on a show at the KidzField
The Glastonbury Kidzfield is somewhere that has built the structure of memories of childhood. And so, of course I had to venture in again, now as a fully fledged adult [just about]. The helter skelter now has a groovy pink neighbour, fitted with dolphins and dragon slides, and wandering around the field are llamas, owls and cats, there to make the experience just that bit more magical – even for a 28-year-old.
Das Brass wows with two performances on Saturday
A band that I had not heard of prior to this year’s festival but one that is now ingrained in my memory is Das Brass. Performing twice in the Green Field on Saturday, their snippets of hits played entirely on brass instruments built an atmosphere that was unmatched.
The Pretenders feature surprise appearances from Paul McCartney, Dave Grohl, and Johnny Marr
Marking their third performance at Worthy Farm, The Pretenders celebrated with some of their closest A-Lister friends. “My favourite thing about Glastonbury over the years is seeing my guitar heroes”, Chrissie Hynde said before introducing The Smiths legend Johnny Marr mid-set.
Cat Stevens/Yusuf sparks tears
Beginning the inevitable descent to the end of Glastonbury’s Pyramid Stage on Sunday, Cat Stevens/Yusuf performed a delicate set of some of the most beautiful songs, so sweet that I, amongst many others, started to sob. A performance not to be missed if you are catching up on TV.
Parades in the Circus Field
Venture into the Circus Field and you would be met by the most fascinating sites. From circus acts, to comedy shows, to floating butterflies and sheep. Luckily, we were camping nearby.
Photo by Anna Barclay
Corbin Shaw designs flag for Nia Archives and gives out free art in Shangri-La
Glass Man Issue 50 feature star Corbin Shaw had his art displayed across the Shangri-La field, as well as for Nia Archives backdrop flag for her performance. If you ventured into the art shop of Shangri-La, you may have been lucky to also take home a free piece of his art with you.
Lana Del Rey led a crowd in a sing-a long of Video Games, without sound
After appearing 30 minutes late to her closing set at The Other stage, Lana Del Rey had her performance inevitably cut short, with the sound and screens being turned off in a defiant move by Glastonbury. Rey pleaded but to no affect, so resorted to coming down to the crowd to sing with her front row fans, without sound. A star performer.
Festival goers gather to build a human peace sign
Inspired by their 2017 record breaking 15,000 human made peace sign, Glastonbury encouraged many to build on this legacy for 2023, gathering thousands to reproduce the momentous occasion.
Photo by Matt Cardy
The flames of a spider inspired stage
Not for those with arachnophobia, but definitely designed for anyone who enjoys a visual show alongside their music is The Spider. For 2023, Arcadia again put together the 50 tone installation, built from recycled military hardware able to operate in all weathers. This year, however, it was fuelled entirely by renewable energy sources. And it shoots flames!
NYC Downlow pays tribute to Lily Savage on Saturday night
In homage to the late Lily Savage, NYC Download dedicated their Saturday drag show, made up of more than 30 queens, to the icon. Worth every minute of the hour and a half queue for entry.
Till next year Glastonbury.
by Lily Rimmer