The colourful outcome of Openair Gampel 2023

By Neshy Denton

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It was a blazing four days for the Swiss Alps. The stars aligned for all those involved in the Gampel event. Wether it was the colourful mix of musical genres. Or the general bright animosity of the party goers. Or the fact that it turned out to be a completely sold out (100.000 tickets) event. Mostly the fact that they were blessed with picturesque weather, all contributed to one of the best outcomes for this years edition.

It’s funny. You spend a big portion of money relying on the hand-picked days, waiting for you in a few months time, to be the swimming results equal to a day in heaven. This has actually been a lingering thought of mine since the Burning Man mud incident occuring just a few weeks ago. Attendees who’d purchased tickets floating on three digit numbers, got the rug pulled form under their feet thanks to the unforeseen circumstance of precipitating disaster. Months of hard work as well as the economical trifle put into such event, really does hang on a thin thread of weather reliability. 

But, moving on from hypothetical set backs, we are here to appreciate another festivals success. Gampel’s 37th edition declares Peter Fox’s appearance as a solo artist after 14 years. Accompanied by over 40 dancers on stage – he elegantly stole the show. Macklemore didn’t shy in showing his love for the Upper Valais location during his solid performance. And the restless Ska P came to rustle the crowd with their renowned anti-establishment ardor. Amongst many other acts who stepped on the stages that night to run riot – this included a special set of fireworks being set off on the main stage by 01099 and Ski Aggu. 

Empowered by their own, the Swiss acts proved to be provincially protruding. Proud to be representing their country, Hecht declared their show to be the best of their 2023 summer tour. There was a sense of fulfilment within the local artistry. No doubt there would be when the Swiss band unveiled the 35th Walk of Stars. 

Delivering the musical cocktail of rock, pop, electro, dance, metal etc. the event tied together the bonds between a wide range of party goers. These attendees, who seemed to find harmony with the organizers and carried out an overall event of great maintenance. No brigades were needed in terms of security and all fire departments collaborated swimminly with the patrolling of the areas. 

Trudging along for four days around a community big enough to form a country’s army, can call for problems. Especially when the falling soldiers are attenuated by the likes of alcoholic beverages. However, the work of many teams efforts made the sustainability of the event break records and, had it not been for the few severe cases of the trots, it is safe to say that Openair Gampel 2023 can be described as what some would call a great triumph. 

Picture by Nil Noble