Optimus Does Another 50,000

Portugal’s Optimus Alive! Festival has spent little time establishing itself as a major European outdoor and now regularly does 50,000 per day. 

Photo: Courtesy Optimus Alive
In Portugal

When it first started on Lisbon’s Alges Park site in 2007, it pulled 70,000 at an average of a little more than 23,000 per day.

The following year, promoter Everything Is New saw the festival crowd pass the 100,000 mark and this year’s three-day total crowd of 153,508 is around the festival’s average mark since 2010. In 2012 it set a record by pulling 160,000 across three days, and has subsequently never fallen below 50,000 per day. It’s taken eight years for Optimus Alive to reach the top of the Portuguese market, which has never really been flush for festivals with 40,000-plus capacities.

This year’s Optimus July 10-12 had Arctic MonkeysThe Black KeysMGMTImagine DragonsInterpolThe LumineersChromeoThe 1975 and Bastille.

Apart from the occasional festival disappearing every now and again, the Portuguese mid-size festival market has remained robust. Jorge Manuel Lopes of PEV Entertainment, which has Mares Vivas Festival by the River Douro near Oporto, reports that this year’s event once again sold out its 25,000 capacity.

The festival with a name that translates as “Choppy Waters” started in 2008 and has been selling out consistently since 2010.

The Mares Vivas lineup July 17-19 had The ProdigyXutos & PontapésClâModestepSkindredSkrillexPortishead, and Joss Stone.