May 17-20, 2013
Fallen to the frozen beginning of spring, Leipzig stumbles back into the path that looms in the shadows – shop keepers plan their windows, removing the colorful pastel shades that once beamed out of their looking glass for monotones that only absorb light. Wave Gotik Treffen has reappeared for its 22nd birthday and will most likely be, again, the largest Gothic gathering on the earth’s soil.
WGT (pronounced Ve Ge Te) falls in line with the pagan celebrated day of Whitsun, or Pentecost in Christianity, which occurs several weeks after Easter. The city of Leipzig will see a volume of more than 20,000 float into the city that have made it their pilgrimage since 1992.
More than Music
Already 96 Artists have been announced for this year, and on the evening within the Agra Messe-park, an unknown band is announced that day, two of them being Rotersand and Peter Heppner last year.
With enough music to spread your wings from neo-folk to Aggrotech, it is impossible to see everything one desires. Though this is a positive factor of WGT, it is after all also about meeting up. When music does become too much, you can escape into a library or even go into the cinema, sit down with popcorn, and gaze at 300.
The festival consists of well over 30 venues participating from Absinthe breakfasts at the Sixtina Absintherie, murder forensics with Dr. Mark Benecke, to medieval villages. One thing is for certain – WGT can be a workout if you want it to be. Intending on building up invincible ankle muscles for those latex platforms? Well you came to the right place!
The festival program is more of a map than anything else – a double-sided sheet the length of three pieces of A4 paper fills your hands and you now take a big gulp of oxygen as you work your way down the events.
A positive to be reminded at this stage is that you have free public transport included with your wristband, so a sigh of relief will be exiting your lungs as the horrors of walking with latex or a few kilos of garments will be complimented by air-conditioned trams.
Halle 1 is the epicenter of the gothic market. Open from midday on Friday, the variety of garments, accessories, and bondage rope on offer is vast. All genres are usually catered for and clothing if seen should be bought as by the time you’ve thought about it and returned, it will most likely be gone as some of the bespoken quality that comes to Wave Gotik Treffen is unsurpassable, especially all in one place.
Opening times for Halle 1:
Monday, 11am -11pm
Festival tickets can be purchased off the official WGT site for €89 – on sale now.
Free Public Transport
One great thing about the festival as already mentioned is that public transport throughout Leipzig is free for those with their wristband; though do bear in mind trams will be busy, and a few thousand people in black could possibly have the same travel time as you!
Airports to fly to would consist of Leipzig/Halle, Dresden, Berlin or Frankfurt. Leipzig/Halle is a small airport, so it could be easier or cheaper to fly to one of the other several and take advantage of the German rail network to get to your destination.
Driving is easy enough if you are willing to do so, though be aware of the need to purchase emission stickers if driving through Leipzig City Centre to the main Agra Messepark. Otherwise, you should be fine.
Parking tickets for the festival can be also purchased off the official WGT site for €15.
The Festival has the Obsorge camping grounds amounting to the cost of €25 per person. Seeing as the events go on throughout Leipzig, there is a fruitful volume of accommodation available to suit you and could also allow you to be closer to what you came to see at WGT.
After the performance of last year, there is no reason not to see as large if not a larger number of beautiful animals of black retake the city of Leipzig. Now, all that is left is to hand wash the delicate garments and pack the sunblock!
Wave Gotik Treffen Website http://www.wave-gotik-treffen.de
Dominic Lynch (DMNCLynch)
Photography courtesy of Dominic Lynch – further photos can be view via Flickr.