A few weeks ago, with Glastonbury almost upon us, we asked NME readers for their questions for organiser Emily Eavis. Here’s what she had to say about the new areas onsite, how she books headliners and the chances of her dad Michael making an appearance in Kanye’s set…
What is your ideal way to spend your day/night at Glasto?
Sebastian Betten, via Twitter
“Well, I wish I could spend my ideal night or day here cos I’m always running around. So I don’t actually have the time, but I’d probably camp on Pennard Hill and wake up, go for a stroll up beyond the tipi field, take in the view and come round slowly. Then, I’d go and see loads of bands and spend lots of time in the Green Fields. I’d work out a schedule for that night and end up in Arcadia, maybe or the south-east corner, or maybe The Park. It’d be really good to do it like that one year, if I didn’t have to work. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to though!”
Please can you persuade your dad to do a duet with Kanye, performing ‘Jesus Walks’?
Rikki Alexander, via Twitter
“I don’t think his duet with Stevie [Wonder] could be beaten! I like the thought of it but he’s done that!”
Can I bring my selfie stick?
Glastotwat, via Twitter
“We haven’t got a ban on selfie sticks, so yeah. This whole thing, I haven’t seen much of it about so I’m going to have a look this year and work out what we’ll do it about it. But it’s fine!”
Michael said Chris Martin was involved with the Sunday headliner but it was never explained… In what way is he involved?
Alex The Shepherd, via Twitter
“When did he say that? He’s not involved! How bizarre. We do have a lot of stories appear from nowhere though.”
Who was your favourite headliner ever?
Will Clarke, via Twitter
“I don’t think I could choose one! There’s too many special moments. It’s really hard to pick one from each year, let alone one from history. I will always hold David Bowie in 2000 as a really special gig for me because it was amazing seeing him here. But there have been some incredible performances.”
How do you decide who headlines? Can you gauge how people will respond?
Tadhg Brennan, via Facebook
“You can’t possibly book on other people’s opinions. It’s so instinctive. I guess because we know it so well and it’s in our bones, we do what we think is right and that’s the only thing we judge it on. Then we announce it and then you deal with whatever comes next. But we always get controversy and people freaking out. We’re used to that! People saying it’s not as good as it used to be – they’ve said that since 1971. It’s because it’s the best it’s been. It’s really amazing now. I guess it’s good to have passionate responses. You can’t really argue with that, but I don’t know why [people get so angry about things].”
Is Noel Gallagher/Oasis 100% not playing?
Neil Jones, via Facebook
“Yeah, they’re not playing! I’ve said it before but they’re definitely not playing. That’s not code for they’re doing a gig!”
Are there any new areas this year, and if so, what are they like?
Katie Hughes, via Facebook
“Yes, there’s a Strummerville area up on the hill. There’s the new Temple in The Park. There’s a few new stages dotted around. We’ve got new installations from Joe Rush all across site – amazing installations. There are lots of new additions, not necessarily big areas but lots of things happening.”
What is the most extreme rider request you’ve had and who by?
John Richardson, via Facebook
“People imagine there’s going to be some really outlandish ones, but we haven’t really had any for a long time. I know a few years back [violinist] Nigel Kennedy asked for an air conditioned unit for his poodle. That was when he played on the Jazz World Stage (now West Holts). That’s pretty out there! But that’s about it.”
Is Kim Kardashian coming? Has she made any rider requests?
Jess Burgess, via Facebook
“I don’t know if she’s coming, and there’s nothing strange on any riders yet.”
What’s your favourite food stand at Glastonbury and why?
Josh Gardiner, via Facebook
“You can’t beat the goan curry in West Holts, or the pulled meat or the falafel’s pretty amazing. There’s some amazing food here now so it’s really hard to choose one, but I think if I had to I’d go for the goan. It’s been here a really long time and it’s a bit of an institution. People who know their food head over there. It’s amazing.”
If it was your choice alone and you could pick any three acts to headline without having to worry about the reaction of fans, who would they be?
Daniel Grant, via Facebook
“I guess that’s what we’ve done this year. Every year, we pick the best headliners we can. Next year, we’ve already got our three headliners sorted. If it all goes to plan then we’re very, very lucky. This is our dream team. There’s not many people we haven’t had now. Maybe The Grateful Dead would be a good addition.”
Earlier this week, Harvey Goldsmith claimed that music festivals have peaked as there are a lack of future headliners coming through. Do you agree, and on this year’s bill, who could be headlining future editions?
Charles Crook, via Facebook
“I disagree with that completely. There’s no shortage of headliners. There are bands that are massive, especially over here at the moment, from Arctic Monkeys to Muse to Coldplay, who could headline. It’s our job to keep putting bands on those slots to create more headliners. We did that with Muse in 2004. I think Florence this year, no doubt next year she’ll be headlining festivals, and probably is this year too.”
My dream would be seeing Tom Waits in a small tent. What’s your dream?
Beat Frick, via Facebook
“I would love to have Tom Waits! Another potential to headline. That would be an absolute dream for us to have him here, and he’s never done it before. So there’s another one that could we’d love to get at some point.”
Will there be a gym onsite so I don’t miss a day of my workout?
Alexander Dean, via Facebook
“Gym? You don’t need a gym here! It’s such good exercise walking around the site. Just keep a pedometer on you and by the end of the day you’ll realize you’ve done about 10 miles.”
Why do some folk get tickets year after year yet newbies miss out year after year?
Abby Ruston, via Facebook
“We’ve got two million people registered, and we’re trying to sell 150,000 tickets. Unfortunately, there’s no way of getting everybody in. It’d be amazing if we could. We’ve looked at the map of where tickets are sold and all over the country it’s pretty even, from cities to rural Wales, Scotland, Manchester, Afghanistan, Tokyo… We just want to make it as quick as possible so people aren’t waiting on phone lines all day.”
Will there be any secret sets?
Sarah Thornley, via Facebook
“There’s a few secret sets. Not anything I can tell you about, sorry. No clues!”
How much sleep are you planning on getting?
Ben Ratchford, via Facebook
“I don’t get much sleep! I’ve also got young children so it’s late nights and early starts. I will not be sleeping much.”
Any clues for next year’s headliners?
Joe Smith, via Facebook
“No. I can’t give you any clues yet! As soon as I give clues, people start guessing and then you have to confirm or deny things. Let’s just enjoy this one!”