Will The Lost Lands save Australia’s music festival industry

There has been a crisis rocking Australia’s music festivals, with reasons like “cancellations, postponements, financial collapses and declining ticket sales” (Johnston 2013). It is urgent for something special and unique to come out and save the Australia’s music festival industry. As inspired by some annual family camping by the river, Simon Daly conceived the idea of The Lost Land, a new music and arts festival that aims to inspire not only adults but also kids and bring a festival for the whole family.

Since the key feature of this first-time collaboration between two festival organisers, Simon Daly and David Strong, is that it is able to cater for kids and parents equally. The Lost Land is considered a saver of Australia’s music festival industry. To find out whether it is true or not, come to read next article by Emma Gardiner posted on SpiceNews on 22 August 2016.



The Lost Lands organisers Simon Daly and David Strong By Gwen O’Toole

With the aim of being Australia’s leading festival for families and following the international festival trend of entertaining the entire family, The Lost Lands promises to ignite the festival lover in everyone while enabling parents to share a wild and wonderful experience with their kids and friends.

“In Europe, a number of festivals include children beyond ‘entry’,” said organiser Simon Daly.

“The result is a more sophisticated generation who know, love and participate in the festival experience.

“I think there’s an appetite for more experiences crafted with families and friends in mind and it’s exciting for the industry,” he said.

“It was conceived over a two or three year period. A bunch of families camp out on a beautiful river down the coast from Lorne (Victoria) each year, everyone is screen liberated and engaged from start to finish. I wondered if I could capture that spirit but with a music arts element added into a broader friendship group. After much workshopping, The Lost Lands was born. A visit to the amazing Camp Bestival in the UK all but confirmed that The Lost Lands can be something special.”

For its inaugural run, The Lost Lands has an impressive musical line-up headlined by International bands Mariachi El Bronx and Ozomatli and features Australian favourites The Waifs, Missy Higgins, The Grates, Architecture in Helsinki, The Bamboos with Tim Rogers, Tash Sultana and Harts.

The event will be held over two days (29 and 30 October 2016) in the grounds of the Werribee Mansion, with options for attendees to camp, ‘glamp’ or stay at Werribee Hotel and Spa.

Daly said to expect ‘a strong arts program with theatre, music and comedy curated for kids but equally engaging for adults; music that you once loved and wouldn’t mind sharing with your family and friends. Camping, visits to the Werribee Zoo (children are admitted free over the weekend with a festival ticket) good times with friends and families set in the truly amazing Werribee Mansion.’

The Lost Lands will also feature a quality selection of Melbourne restaurants, street eats, the best craft brews and wine.

The Lost Lands is a first-time collaboration for the two festival organisers. Simon Daly, (Falls Festival founder) and David Strong (The Peninsula Picnic creative director and former St Kilda festival director) are certainly no strangers to organising large scale public events and as Australia has recently experienced a heavy decline in many previously popular music festivals such as Soundwave, Future Music Festival and Stereosonic, The Lost Lands promises to offer something rather unique for the festival scene here in Australia and family-friendly events might be the key to this ones success.

“Festivals need to be unique to survive,” said Daly.

“Family festivals aren’t new in Europe, in fact many have been going for decades. The Lost Lands has the ability to shine a positive light on festivals in Australia by breeding a strong festival culture that Europe enjoys from a very early age with kids. In a decade or two The Lost Lands kids will be the next wave of festival lovers.”


It is very exciting to see a series of activities included a such a unique festival. There will be a literacy area hosting readings and discussion topics for both parents and children, there will be workshops that encourage skills and passions in songwriting, cooking, yoga, circus play, etc, and there will be appalling outdoor events like camping, bushwalks, bike riding and visits to the nearby Werribee Zoo.(AustralianMusician 2016) Just as Daly said, “The Lost Lands will give parents the chance to reconnect with the festival experience, while instilling in kids, a love and appreciation of music, arts, and adventure.” (AustralianMusician 2016)

For further information, you could go to The Lost Land online website. You could find detailed information about the music, theatre, workshops, wonder, wilderness and festival fare. You could also review the introduction of the singers and bands who will present their performance during the festival. The most important thing, of course, is to go to buy a ticket, plan your daytime routine and night accommodation, which you can choose from camping, glamping, and hotel.

The Lost Lands is run in partnership with Wyndham City Council and Parks Victoria.

When: October 28-30 2016

Where: Werribee Mansion (Melbourne)

Website: www.thelostlands.com.au

Tickets: On sale 2 June. Three, two and single day passes available.



AustralianMusician 2016, ‘New Music Festival: The Lost Lands’, Australian Musician Blog, blog post, 01 June. Available from: http://www.australianmusician.com.au/new-music-festival-the-lost-lands/. [28 August 2016]

Gardiner, E 2016, Will the lost lands save Australia’s music festival industry. Available from: http://www.spicenews.com.au/2016/08/will-the-lost-lands-save-australias-music-festival-industry/. [28 August 2016]

Johnston, C 2013, The crisis rocking Australia’s music festivals. Available from: http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/music/the-crisis-rocking-australias-music-festivals-20131019-2vtbx.html. [28 August 2016].

3 comments on “Will The Lost Lands save Australia’s music festival industryAdd yours →

  1. Hi Summer, this is a great article and a great idea for a music festival. It is not often that a festival is formulated with the specific aim of targeting families to come and enjoy family oriented activities so it is a very unique idea that I don’t think has ever happened before in Australia. Will it be successful however? I hope so, I think an idea this unprecedented will definitely attract many families who love activities which are specifically catered towards them. As a student however it is not particularly catered towards my demographic so I perhaps if this festival is successful then the promoters will look to other demographics for different festival ideas? As an avid Soundwave fan, attendee and general festival lover I am very sad to see the Australian Festival industry scene die as quickly as it has and I hope that it has a quick return. Do you know if Daly and Strong have any plans to bring this festival, or any other festival to Perth? I think in terms of culture the Perth community sorely needs another festival, one which people can get excited about again. Festivals are a great way in which people can come together and enjoy a shared love of music, art, culture and just generally have a great time. Without them, I believe that Australia’s music scene and it’s general contribution to culture suffers, As it is a great platform to showcase Australian music in general.
    It is great that this article has highlighted a surfacing of a new festival, hopefully there is many for to come.

  2. Cool, it solves the problem of baby sitters! I missed most of music events since I became a dad but here we go again…
    Thanks Summer!

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