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10 of the Best Music Festivals in Peru
Peru has seen a welcome increase in music festivals in recent years, with one-day and multiday events featuring bands performing everything from punk rock to reggae and electronic music. Here—in no particular order—are 10 of the best and most well-established annual music festivals in Peru.Continue to 2 of 11 below.
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Festival de los 7 Mares
The Festival de los 7 Mares (Festival of the 7 Seas) is Peru’s largest world music festival. According to the event organizers, the festival is all about bringing people together, both musically and culturally, in a friendly and welcoming environment.
The first Festival de los 7 Mares took place in 2012 in Lima’s Parque de la Exposición, with the headline act -- Manu Chao -- creating a real buzz around the event. The 2013 and 2014 events also took place in the Parque de la Exposición, with Steel Pulse, a roots reggae band from the U.K., headlining in 2014.
The annual one-day event typically lasts for between 12 and 14 hours, with ticket prices at about S/.100 (nuevos soles).
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- Website: festivalsietemares.com
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Rock en la Playa
Rock en la Playa returned for its third consecutive year in 2014, establishing itself as one of Lima’s most important rock festivals. The one-day event typically takes place on one of the beaches along the Panamericana Sur (Southern Pan-American Highway) to the south of Lima, with 20 or so Peruvian rock bands taking to the stage for a sometimes-frenetic 12 to 14 hours.
Expect pogoing, mosh pits and plenty of sand in sensitive places. Entry is free -- for now, at least. Rock en la Playa is normally held in February.
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- Facebook: www.facebook.com/FESTIVALROCKENLAPLAYA
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Festival Vivo X el Rock
The Festival Vivo X el Rock will make its third appearance in 2014, staking a huge claim to the title of “biggest rock festival in Peru.” The line-up always features many of Peru’s most popular rock bands, including groups such as Libido, Mar de Copas, Amen, Zen and Leusemia.
The 2014 event will also feature three Argentine rock bands, Rata Blanca, El Otro Yo and Jauria.
The one-day event normally takes place in the Parque de la Exposición sometime between May and July. The bands -- often 20 or more -- are spread across two separate stages. Tickets cost about S/.50.
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- Facebook: es-la.facebook.com/VIVOXELROCK
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Selvámonos is arguably the closest thing Peru has to famous multiday festivals like Glastonbury and Lollapalooza (although Lollapalooza may well come to Peru soon, having already reached Brazil and Chile).
The event was created in 2009 by a group of Peruvians and foreigners with a shared love of music and Peruvian culture. Unlike the majority of Peru’s festivals, Selvámonos was not based in Lima but in Oxapampa, a town of about 10,000 inhabitants located in the Selva Central, or Central Jungle region of Peru.
Along with its picturesque surroundings, Selvámonos prides itself on being a truly cultural event that goes well beyond the music. The annual event traditionally begins with a Semana Cultural, or cultural week, leading up to the two-day music festival. These events, which are often completely free, include theatrical performances, classical music, open-air cinema and comedy shows.
As for the bands, you can expect an eclectic mix ranging from rock to reggae and cumbia to electronica. International acts, both from South America and beyond, are also making more appearances at Selvámonos each year. Selvámonos typically takes place between June and August.
Not content with one big event in Oxapampa, the Selvámonos team has branched out with two additional events. The first is Electro Selvámonos, an open-air electronic music festival born in 2011. Electro Selvámonos takes place in various parts of the country. There have been two events confirmed so far for 2014, the first at Punta Rocas on the Panamericana Sur south of Lima, and the second in the city of Huancayo in the Junín Region of Peru.
The latest addition to the Selvámonos repertoire is the Primera Parada (“First Stop”), a pre-Selvámonos festival that typically takes place in or around Lima and often features bands that have appeared in previous Selvámonos festivals.
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- Website: www.selvamonos.org
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Lima Vive Rock
Lima Vive Rock is a major one-day rock festival organized by the Municipalidad Metropolitana de Lima (Lima Metropolitan Municipality). It was first held in 2012 (16 bands) and then in 2013 (18 bands), both times in the Parque de la Exposición.
The Lima Vive Rock line-up features popular Peruvian rock acts as well as some relative newcomers. The festival also has a record fair and music classes (guitar and bass).
The event is free, but with a 10,000-person maximum capacity. The show normally takes place in September and runs for about 14 hours. The 2014 event has been confirmed for September, but further details have yet to be announced.Continue to 7 of 11 below.
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Rock en el Parque
Rock en el Parque is one of Lima’s oldest rock and punk festivals, having existed in one form or another since 2001. And while the venues have changed over the years, the festival’s commitment to Peruvian punk rock has remained constant.
The 2013 event, held in the Los Olivos district of Lima, featured more than 20 bands, including the influential Peruvian rock band Leusemia. Tickets went on general sale for only S/.20 ($7).
The 2014 event has not yet been confirmed.Continue to 8 of 11 below.
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Acustirock prides itself on being “100% Rock Peruano,” featuring and supporting Peruvian rock acts both large and small.
The first Acustirock took place in Lima in May 2011, followed by a second Acustirock later the same year. Acustirock III took place in May 2012, followed by the first edition of the event to be held outside the capital (Acustirock AQP, which happened in Arequipa in October 2012).
Twenty thousand people attended Acustirock IV in 2013, which featured 14 bands -- all rock, all Peruvian. The festival then went abroad later that year for Acustirock Argentina.
Acustirock V, which took place in March 2014 at the Estadio San Marcos, was by far the biggest incarnation to date. With two stages, 15 hours of music and 37 bands, the 2014 event took Acustirock to a new level. It was quickly followed by the first ever Acustirock Beach, a new event that took place on April 12, 2014, on Conchán Beach (near km 25 of the Panamericana Sur, Lurín).
Acustirock has been very loyal to its bands, many of whom return year after year. Major Peruvian rocks acts to have played Acustirock at least once include Mar de Copas, Amen, Libido, Dolores Delirio, Miki Gonzalez and Río.Continue to 9 of 11 below.
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The first Creamfields festival took place in Winchester, England, back in 1998 and featured acts such as Run DMC, Primal Scream, Daft Punk and Paul van Dyk. Since then, Creamfields has gone on to establish itself as one of the preeminent dance music festivals in both the U.K. and across the globe.
Creamfields came to Peru for the first time in 2007, with headline act John Digweed helping to attract a crowd of 7,000. The event has taken place every year since 2007, with the 2013 event featuring about 30 live electronic acts and DJs including Sven Väth, Hernan Cattaneo and Nick Warren.
Since 2008, Creamfields Peru has been held at the Fundo Mamacona in the Lurín District of southern Lima. The event typically takes place in mid-November. Tickets for the 2013 event began at S/.180 ($64). Creamfields has not yet been confirmed for 2014.Continue to 10 of 11 below.
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Summer of Dub
The third installment of the Summer of Dub festival took place in Chorrillos, Lima, in January 2014. The dub festival has been growing in popularity over the years, with the last installment featuring the Mungo’s Hi Fi sound system from Glasgow, Scotland, and deejay Solo Banton.
Tickets for Summer of Dub 2014, held at Certes Dub in Chorrillos, went on sale for S/.43 ($15).Continue to 11 of 11 below.
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The annual Reggae Fest is the main event in Lima for fans of all things reggae, despite featuring only a handful of bands. The 2013 event featured Gondwana (from Santiago, Chile), Dread Mar-I and Los Cafres (both from Argentina). Gondwana and Los Cafres both returned in 2014, alongside Peruvian reggae-rock band Laguna Pai and fellow Peruvians Pochi Marambio and Tierra Sur.
The Reggae Fest normally takes place down by the beach in Punta Hermosa, located off the Panamericana Sur to the south of Lima.