Across The Threshold organisers speak ahead of festival and lessons along the way

FOR seven years Threshold Festival has taken hold of the Baltic Triangle but this year, it's a little different.

A somewhat scaled down event with all the juicy trimmings, Across the Threshold will act as a transition for the new dawn of Threshold in 2019.

Beginning on Friday, April 13 the jam-packed programme will include bands, solo artists and DJs at Unit 51 and District before welcoming back 'stand-out' artists from previous years.

The following day, the event will look towards the future, kicking odd with industry workshops, panels and key notes - exploring the landscape of the music and art scene in the region.

After a day of talking there will be nothing more welcome than much more of what Liverpool does best - music, arts and performance, which will continue well into the wee hours of Sunday.

One third of organiser Kaya Herstad Carney spoke to The Music Manual about Threshold's past, present and future along with some helpful tips promoter tips...

What first inspired you to create Threshold?

We were doing a few gig nights around town at the time, one of them called 'Under the Influence', which was a series inspired by the artists and bands that influenced the next generations.

Then we got the opportunity to put on a festival in what was the old CUC building, because our friend was the artistic director of the building.

I (Kaya) had been working in festivals for a fair few years by then, but not been in charge.

It was a daunting, yet such an amazing experience.

We invited lots of friend and contacts to take part, and although the original idea was an 'Under the Influence' festival, because the building was associated with an addiction charity, the name wasn't appropriate, and the name Threshold was born.

Baltic Triangle wasn't what it is now, and only really The Picket was around (what is now District). It's on the threshold of the city, and there were other parts of the definition of the word that just resonates with what we wanted to do with grassroots/emerging/avant garde and creative partnership:

  • A point of entry or beginning.
  • The level at which one starts to feel or react to something
  • A level, rate, or amount at which something comes into effect.

Would you want to expand Threshold across the country?

We kind of have done by doing stages and partnerships across the country, last year namely Oxford's Cowley Road carnival.

Do you think it's harder trying to find new, upcoming acts each year?   

No, never, actually.

If anything there are more and more to choose from. It is hard to choose a variety of scenes and genres, but always would be.

Is art in Liverpool gaining momentum - are more people choosing to try out/ get into more things?

That's a difficult one, as in some ways it feels like we are on the end of a really creative wave of the emerging Baltic triangle, Kazimier and other exciting things, so something else is about to happen but is in the beginning so hard to say..

What made you make the move to Across The Threshold?

With three of us living in London now for work, logistically it was a challenge last year, and the combination of needing to reset and plan to ensure we don't lose any more of our personal monies we have invested and ensure it can continue to serve the grassroots scene in Liverpool in years to come.

Is there any advice you'd give to someone who may want to put on an event?

Put on the event you want to go to (even though you don't often get to see much when you're running them)!

Keep an eye on outgoings, trust your instincts and be like the duck on water: don't let the punters see what's going on underneath..

Do you have the dream job?

Well, I am fortunate to be living with music, but Threshold itself has been more like an expensive hobby, as we are all volunteers and artists on the project.

That said, working the festival has given some amazing work experience and transferable skills to other aspects of my career.

Has there been any lessons you have learnt along the way?

Loads! Where to start?!

Apart from the practical lessons on event organisation, music industry practices, leading teams and directing the artistic direction, I guess the most important lesson is to trust that if your intention is good, and focus on the love we get, and it doesn't matter if not everyone 'gets us'.

We’ve grown slowly and steadily, and that’s the best way.

There’s something about the event that demands authenticity in every aspect of how we approach it. That takes time and it takes courage too.

We haven’t always made the right moves, but it’s always come from the right place.

Some people might try and find some way of shooting you down, especially as you grow, and if you've put lots of effort in, it can be hard not to take it personally - yet it's so important for motivation to keep believing and see the positives.

I am a firm believer in "spread what you like, not what you hate!"

What can we expect at Across The Threshold?

It's going to be a bit of a "best of"

Acts already  include Fick as Fieves, Ovvls, Emergency Tiara, Torgtusa/Breistein, Mersey Wylie, Peter J Smyth, Mixnots, Emilio Pinchi, Hollows, Ray Wills, Operation Lightfoot, Mardhys, Salsa Groove Familia, Daisy Gill, Mica Jane, Tabitha Jade, Ellie Rose Smith plus a whole load of other bands, visual artists and performers, including the Secret Circus organisers and my band, Science of the Lamps is also playing.

Get your tickets for Across The Threshold here


Post a Comment