Dour Fits A Large Medium

Belgium’s Dour festival may have to take a larger size in the future.

Having worked on re-configuring the site and opening up a new bar area on the edge of the neighbouring woods, Dour – which is midway between Brussels and the northern French town of Lille – now has a capacity of 40,000.

Dour organisers may feel disappointed it didn’t pull off its fifth successive sellout – all achieved with capacities of 36,000 or less – but the event has shown steady growth for a decade and 2010 may only be a blip on the graph.

The event did between 30,000 and 32,000 each day, although 15,000 visitors were already on the campsite the day before the festival opened.

Dour’s strength has long been its ability to attract a high proportion of foreign music fans to the point it switched its marketing slogan. Previously billed as “The Belgian Alternative Music Event,” in 2007 it became “The European Alternative Music Event.”

The festival doesn’t have the breakdown of the number of foreign visitors it had July 15-18 apart from the fact that more than 1,000 were journalists.

The acts helping the internationalists at Dour included Faith No More, Otto Von Schirach, Dub Pistols, The Subways, Balkan Beat Box, The Raveonettes, and Fun Lovin’ Criminals.