Lightning In a Bottle Intersects Music Festival Subculture with Educational Programming for High Social Impact

Article Contributed by Maddy Crandall | Published on Monday, May 16, 2022

Lightning in a Bottle, taking place this Memorial Day weekend (May 25- May 30, 2022) is known for its multi-faceted level of entertainment brought to attendees by festival producers, DoLab. Given the epic music lineup and perfect California scenescape …what else makes this festival an exemplary model of a transformational festival experience? 

Compass Lineup | Lightning In A Bottle Festival

The crossroads of the music festival subculture with a full-spectrum Learning & Culture Lineup (LIB Compass) allows attendees to—not only embark on a deeper journey of consciousness throughout the weekend at Buena Vista Lake—but also be provided with the knowledge, educational practices, and practical toolkit to bring back with them into their own communities … and then create a ripple social effect.

Research from Sage Journals shows that the popularity of festivals has been steadily increasing over the past few years, potentially even despite COVID-19, where these festivals and the commonwealth's value were showcased, at a time when events ceased to exist.

These on-site festival experiences are sacred, and many in the music festival subculture (or, “scene”) are aware of the energetic power stream that takes place when thousands of people come together in one space. It is the purest moment in time—that feeling of ecstasy—that allows us to tap into our greatest potential at that very moment and have no doubts about the possible realities we can create. Festival grounds are a place where we all know how to communicate with each other, to live side-by-side, united by a collective vision for a better future. They provide a surreal understanding of what really matters in life. 

Photo by Eric Allen

Research on the culture of music festival fandoms shows that the music festival subculture is fueled by a sense of identity and a taste for belonging to a culturally conceptualized community. People will continue to travel far and wide to these fest locations just to be with other fans and to share in the mutual joy of the music. In almost a religious context, the music serves as a communal event.

Commonly, we see it in national concert venues where fans congregate outside the venue hours before and after the show simply to interact with others. Experiences such as these also illustrate how vastly this fest community embraces technologies to quickly distribute information and stay connected.

84% of those surveyed feel there is a connection between themselves and other fans that like the same music. Contrast this with the 63% who feel a connection between themselves and the music artists they like. Fans feel a stronger connection to other fans than they feel with the artists they enjoy. Fans perceive an increased value of a live concert because they are getting much more than just the music … They are also getting a community experience. 

Many of the global problems and systems in need of healing could use a similar communal force that the festival grounds contain. 

This is where the intersection comes into play

It is the intersection between this subculture’s collective power of unison and LIB’s Learning & Cultural Hub. LIB Compass’s curriculum covers all bases where powerful, life-changing programming is concerned … where the delivery of this educational content is, not only admirable in design but capable of truly tapping into the potential of this unique subculture …capable of delivering the right information to the right people … of impacting how future generations co-create, plan and thrive.

Photo by Watchara

The Learning & Culture Hub (Compass) on-site at LIB is an immersive area offering a diverse array of educational opportunities designed to engage the senses, expand the mind, and inspire community action. The experience includes talks, workshops, and panels by world-renowned visionaries, experts, and thought-leaders, in areas like indigenous cultures, psychedelic medicine, climate change, love & relationships, healthy eating, and so much more. The programming is contemporary, rooted in educational activism, and equipped with a teaching style designed for impact.

Highlighted talks and discussions in this year’s programming include Regenerating Soil with Microbes, Cryptocurrency: The Ownership Economy, Queering the Liminal, Technology of Prayer, Fire Adapted Communities: Building A Wildfire Resilient Future, Transforming Fulfilling Prophecies into Love, Resilience of Chamorro Food and more.

More likely than not, your typically-conceived festival goer is coming for the epic headliners (did we mention Glass Animals, Kaytranada, GRiZ, Black Coffee, Four Tet, Big Wild, Chet Faker?!), but these fest-goers thrive because of the community. And who knows, the curriculum at The Compass could radically impact their lives with the trifecta of all these elements—music, education, community,

Not only is The Compass a win for LIB, as well as for attendees, but it is also a collective win for the future of the music industry, the future of the festival industry—and most importantly— for the hope in humanity.

Photo by Jessica Bernstein