The 7th edition of Ultra Europe 2019 closed its doors in July for what will be remembered as one of the best yet. Record numbers, a new location, four destinations, hundreds of performers, spectacular production, thousands of visitors, including many celebrities, and lifelong friendships made can quickly sum up the 7th edition of Ultra Europe – and on the heels of that success, Ultra has announced the new release. Namely, from July 10-12, 2020, Split will host the 8th edition!
But before we get ahead of ourselves, here’s a look at the 7th edition of Ultra Europe, in numbers.
Over the seven-day experience, more than 155,000 fans arrived from a record 143 countries to Ultra Europe this year, mostly from Spain, the United Kingdom, Norway, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Austria, the US, Canada and the Netherlands. There were more than 35,000 local fans, which is the highest ever, and the festival’s millionth visitor was recorded this year, making it by far the largest international event in Croatia. More than 2,000 people took part in the organization, more than 250 DJs played on 12 stages in 4 destinations, and more than 300 accredited local and foreign journalists closely followed the event.
Ultra Europe saw a total reach of 10,000,000 + on social channels. More than 20,000,000 impressions were generated, over 500,000 likes, and official hashtags were popular – #UltraEurope was used over 150,000 times. The festival was also live-streamed on Facebook and YouTube, recording over 300,000 minutes of views, and the best moments can still be viewed on all official channels of the festival.
What sets ULTRA apart from all other festivals in the world is the way it connects music and destinations. The experience for visitors takes on a whole new dimension, and the promotion of Croatia is hardly measurable by any number. ULTRA takes its fans on a journey from Omiš, via Split to Brač, Hvar and Vis. However, festival guests are also happy to travel to Dubrovnik, to the Krka waterfalls and Plitvice Lakes, the places they have chosen in the official survey as those that are definitely worth a visit. Ultra guests stay almost seven days in Croatia on average and take pictures and memories with them to all parts of the globe. The destination adventure started on the island of Brač, at the 585 Club, before the madhouse moved to the sunniest Croatian island of Hvar. The music program began in front of the cascading pools of the Amfora Grand Beach Resort and continued at the Carpe Diem Beach Club. In the intimate and exclusive atmosphere of the 200-year-old Fort George Fort on Vis, better known as Fortica, the seventh ULTRA adventure came to an end.
It was also the most talked-about news in recent months as many considered the famous festival leaving Poljud the wrong solution and a reason why Ultra could ultimately leave Croatia. Those behind this decision were silent yet wise as they eagerly waited to open the doors to their new home. So, is Ultra Europe moving to Park Mladeži for good? Fortunately, Park Mladeži did not disappoint and powerfully kicked off a new four-year festival period that is growing and evolving. Some 15,000 square meters larger than Poljud, representing three football fields, it has opened up new opportunities for organizers to use 30,000 square meters, which is accompanied by an increase in capacity for 55,000 visitors. Together with the City of Split and the Split Sports Facilities Public Institution, this location will develop into a leading sports and event location in the region. It is important to note that no major incidents were recorded during the festival in Split, and the seventh edition will be remembered for the smallest number of interventions by all services in history.
“This year we had only one goal – to fulfill all that we promised you at the beginning of the year! That we have succeeded in this is not only spoken by figures and facts, but also by the numerous positive comments we receive daily from our fans, and also from the performers themselves and the American festival owners. I would like to thank all those who contributed to this, and I would especially like to thank the residents of Split. We asked you to believe us and thank you for that! We have done everything necessary to make the festival the safest venue in the country, with the lowest number of interventions ever, confirming the success of the new location. Without cooperating with the local community and surrounding residents, this would not be possible, and I am sure that in the coming years we will further develop this location to further improve their living conditions during the festival and also make all Split citizens proud of Park Mladeži,” said Joe Bašić, Managing Director of MPG Live, the exclusive organizer of ULTRA Europe, adding:” Considering that the festival generates more than €20 million in free marketing promotions each year to the city of Split and Croatia, we will agree that this is one of the most important events in the history of the Croatian music and entertainment industry, and in order for this figure to be higher, it requires further solid and high-quality cooperation with the representatives of the authorities, local and tourism sector, as well as the support of all citizens of Split.”
The production of a festival this size is also no easy task, especially when you change the location just one month before the festival begins. However, among the many records broken at the 7th edition is the main stage. The length of the whole stage stretched 67.50 meters, which was also one of the longest stages in Europe and never before seen in our region. One pillar weighed more than 10 tons, and the roof had ballasts that, when filled with water, weighed about 50 tons. The Swedish House Mafia performance was an additional challenge – in just half an hour the existing scenery had to be dismantled, a special riser appeared, which looked like a 14m x 4m stage, with 88 meters of additional LED screens, additional lighting, and landings for pyrotechnics. More than 450 people worked at the festival and the equipment arrived in 50 trucks, including more than 1,800 light fixtures and more than 1,200 square meters of LED screens. There were also 240 meters of bar space, and to minimize the effect of noise, special attention was given to sound. A high-performance directional audio system was selected, and using the Cardioid Subwoofers, the sound wave coherently propagated only to the north of the stadium. Advanced Array Processing technology was also used to direct the sound waves into the dance floor to minimize the dissipation of the shielded zones and further limit the volume to 100 dB.
Last year, the Government of the Republic of Croatia declared the festival a strategically important project because of its large positive multiplier effects on the Croatian economy and the promotion of Croatia as a tourist destination. The realized GDP of the festival is approximately 0.08 percent of the total GDP of Croatia. It is not surprising, therefore, that this year many politicians and representatives of the tourism sector wanted to feel the magic of Ultra firsthand. Visitors included Minister of Culture Nina Obuljen Koržinek, Mayor of Split Andro Krstulović Opara, Mayor of Zagreb Milan Bandić, State Secretary Tonči Glavina, Director of the Croatian National Tourist Board Kristjan Staničić, Director of the Zagreb Tourist Board Martina Bienenfeld and Alijana Vukšić, Director of the Split Tourist Board.
Many celebrities like Vanna, who came with her husband and daughters, Ivo Radić, Anamarija Asanović, Ivan Tandarić from ELFS, Petar Grašo, Luka Nižetić, Damir Kedžo, Ivan Pažanin, Domenica, Hana, Ivan Huljić, Jole, Radovan Stošić, model Luna Valas, Paula Puškaš, Patrick Cvetko and Drago Pežić didn’t miss the fun at Park Mladeži.
Tickets for the eighth edition, which will be held from July 10 to 12, 2020, at Park Mladeži in Split, can be purchased on the official website.
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