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Monday, June 27, 2011

Spaktekel Medieval Festival 2011

Three years ago was the last time I attended the Spaktekel. So I was surprised to learn that this year it would take place in on a Castle in Grisons. Fortunately it was very easy to get there by public transport.

We arrived at 5pm, just after a heavy rainstorm blew over. So it was markedly cooler than we expected, after all it was supposed to be sunny and warm!

The first band to play after our arrival was Seabass a Swiss band playing "Balkan beats 'n Melodies". Their music was catchy and encouraged us to dance along.

Next were Cumulo Nimbus a Renaissance Metal Band from Germany. Even though their music sounded cool, I couldn't warm to the vocalists and so I wasn't too disappointed when their show was over.

What then followed was an impromptu acoustic concert by members of Des Königs Halunken and other musicians. And it was fantastic. The guys had never played in that combination before and even exchanged instruments between songs, nevertheless it sounded very professional :).

And then it was finally time for the highlight of the day, Des Königs Halunken played their 5-year anniversary concert. Exactly 5 years and one day ago they played their first gig at the Spaktekel. To celebrate this they vowed to make all their speeches in Swiss German, in addition they regularly toasted to the audience with Vodka and other liquors, which definitely didn't make it easier for them to play! Thus it wasn't surprising that fun was the first priority and fun we all had. As a special present to the constant fans the Halunken played "Herr Mannelig", one of their oldest songs, which no longer features in their regular program. After two hours the show was over and everyone was relieved to get a break ;).

With a nice fireshow the evening ended.

Overall, the Spaktekel was a great success despite the mixed weather. I'll definitely consider returning next year :)

My pictures can be found in my web album.

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Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Middle Earth Festival returns in 2012

After an absence of 5 years the famous Middle Earth Festival returns to Leuk in 2012. I myself have attended three times so far, and every time was tremendous fun. Let's take a look back.

2003

I didn't have a clue was I was getting into when I signed up for the 3rd Middle Earth Festival in 2003. The reason for going was my good friend Ronny, who is a huge Lord of the Rings fan, didn't want to go alone.
I most clearly remember the workshops featuring fighting skills such as Sword Fighting and Archery, but also the concerts by An Lar and Saltatio Mortis in the evening. We had such great fun at the concerts that we blocked the bands from leaving the stage! Only after Saltatio Mortis appealed saying they had to travel another 300 kilometres tonight, we appeased and gave them a rest ;).
All in all it was a wonderful experience.
Unfortunately for this review, the Middle Earth Festival happened before I started blogging and before I acquired a digital camera, thus there are no further posts and pics to link back to.

2005

When I learned that the Middle Earth Festival would take place again, I didn't hesitate to sign up. This time I even signed up alone, knowing that there are so many wonderful and friendly people there, that I wouldn't feel left alone.
The day before it all started I joined the Caradhras expedition, for a day-long trek with beautiful summer weather over the Gemmi pass.
This time my focus for workshops shifted from fighting to dancing (Irish Dancing, Medieval Dancing, etc.) and I didn't regret this choice, because they all were great fun!
But let's take a look what I had to say about it at the time:
Mittelerdefest 5
Pics from Mittelerdefest 5

2007

Signing up for 2007's Middle Earth Festival was a no-brainer ;), after two such wonderful events, I just had to be there.
Same time as last year I joined the Caradhras trek a day before the festival. However, this time we were not so lucky with the weather and ran into a snow storm!!! Remember, it was the 5th of July! We all made it through and still have fond memories of our heroic feat :)
Fortunately the weather improved for the rest of the Festival. Having loved the dance workshops in 2005, I signed up for more dancing in 2007 and again it was great fun.
But let's take a look what I had to say about it at the time:
Caradhras
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Conclusion

With great joy I learned that the Middle Earth Festival will take place again in 2012 and immediately marked it in my agenda :). I can't wait to meet all those wonderful people again :)

More information about the Middle Earth Festival 2012 can be found on their official homepage.

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