On the 23rd of February I went to the Wakefield Rhubarb Festival and was able to see Scott Wainwright sing four songs. Overall I really enjoyed the event, it was free, and a feel good place to be. Scott Wainwright himself seemed to be a juxtopositionary character, cracking self depreciating jokes then contrasting those with beautiful folk music. His personality almost made folk music rebellious, he said “it’s rubbish (his CD) but if you wanna buy it it’s £5 over there”. Despite Wainwright’s jokes being said in a monotone and self depreciating way, his personality when given a guitar opposes this, making the atmosphere free and light.
Not only was the event free, but the sun was shining, people were enjoying the warm weather in February! The smell of curry from the outside stalls mixed with generations of happy faces instilled the feeling of nostalgia through the yurt where the event took place. The crowd was mainly middle aged, making moments such as a little girl dancing with her Grandma much sweeter.
However, I did feel there were negatives – the stage was cluttered, distracting us from the performer and there were several issues with the yurt. It was difficult to locate the single entrance. Then, if there was a fire there would be extreme difficulty getting out from it.
Outside, stalls were selling food. It was maddening that you couldn’t take food or drink into the yurt, which isolated those who wanted to eat and enjoy the show. Inside the yurt there seemed to be nowhere to get food and a small desk where you could purchase drinks.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed Wainwright’s performance who played mainly folk, then flipped to a “hip hop” styled rap for his final song. Everything he sang was well executed despite the event planning coming across as shoddy.