We are really sorry to announce the cancellation of this year’s festival and apologise to artists and ticket-holders alike for any inconvenience this may have caused. Although we originally entertained the idea of taking this year off, as many established festivals do, the hastily scheduled one-day event presented an unviable solution, and events beyond our control have regretfully forced us to knock it on the head. In mitigation, so much time and energy has been spent producing our feature film and, although we hoped to screen the movie at this year’s truncated event, we are simply unable to service both projects to coincide favourably. Furthermore, we are genuinely loath to present something that would basically do the past five years of hard work and commitment, by so many, a fundamental disservice.
On top of all this, we have also been faced with the reality of another local weekend camping festival taking place in very close proximity to our festival site, and the infrastructural implications of the two festival dates being so close to each has been cause for some concern. We are therefore, now of the opinion that the Flat Lake Festival is no longer able to compete in its present form.
Since we began five years ago, there are now probably more festivals dotted around the country than libraries, more exotic catering trailers than local butchers shops, more mobile Heineken bars than village pubs… and more ubiquitous music ‘line-ups’ than you can shake a soiled rock ‘n roll G-string at. Are we not all about to be eaten up by a herd of man-eating yurts? Has commercial hedonism, with all its splendiferous canvas-countercultural intent, perhaps reached saturation point? Although our new tented kingdom has provided a few added crusts to impoverished artists, there remains a wider creative community who will always be looking for something else, a rare place in which to celebrate their creative endeavors and collaborate ideas, a creative environment devoid off the commercial and institutionalized trappings of what is generally on offer - but we have to admit, to the extent of trying to keep things fresh each year, this has been a difficult thing to navigate and keep in check.
The Flat Lake was conceived with the very best intentions of providing a unique weekend of diverse art and entertainment. We feel that the festival, at its very heart, also contributed a great deal in terms of building bridges, contributed on many levels to the local community, the county of Monaghan and beyond - and despite struggling year after year, we have strived to maintain the highest levels of artistic & creative values. In spite of The Flat Lake evolving without sponsorship aid or investment from a big-gun promoter, our financial deficit is miniscule in the context of having weathered some difficult post dead tiger years – a reasonable indication that, with an improved administrational platform, something like this can be fiscally managed on a shoestring.
Although we hope to return next year, you can perhaps appreciate that we have a lot to think about in terms of how we set about speculating its revival.
In terms of clearing our financial decks, we are going to have to schedule some sort of small fund-raising event in the near future in order to pay a few outstanding bills, perhaps even screening our Flat Lake feature film on the same day – So, we’ll be in touch soon.
Thank you for all your support – and for contributing to some genuinely magical, moving moments over the last five years.
And finally, G’luck to the Fortstock Festival – June 23rd – 24th – Vances Estate – Clones.
We sincerely hope they get the weather.