Benicassim Wins Civic Approval

A second successive sellout for Benicassim had new city mayor Francesc Colomer turning up to the post-festival press conference to congratulate the organizers on creating a truly international event.

More than 150,000 turned up July 19-22 at the Festival Internacional de Benicassim, the 13th time it’s been held, and more than 47 percent of them bought their tickets outside of Spain.

Last year 60 percent of the tickets were shifted in Spain, with the U.K. taking up most of the remaining 40 percent.

Praising the festival organizers for "internationalizing" Benicassim with its outstanding contributions to music and other cultural disciplines, Colomer also focused on the way the fans behave well and how the state security forces and small Mediterranean coastal city’s police do a great job marshalling them.

As if to emphasize the community approach to the festival, local police chiefs José Luis and Miguel Morán were both at the press conference and confirmed the festival’s record attendance.

Benicassim has a significant impact on the local economy, bringing in an estimated euro 14 million per year.

This year’s bash attracted 800 national and 200 foreign journalists.

Apart from selling out its smaller 30,000 capacity in 2002, the last two years – or ever since Irish promoters Vince Power and Denis Desmond bought a share – are the only times that it’s sold out.

The two are said to be so happy with the investment that Power’s been quoted saying he’d like to create or buy another Spanish event as a twin that would run simultaneously.

The acts helping the small city on the "Coast of the Orange Blossoms" 60 kilometers north of Valencia to make a big international noise included Muse, Kings Of Leon, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Hives, Arctic Monkeys, Wilco, The Magic Numbers, Klaxons, Mando Diao, Iggy & The Stooges, Bright Eyes, The B-52’s, The Pipettes, The Rapture, Rufus Wainwright, Peter, Bjorn and John and The Human League.