The 27th cosmopolitan Coulour Café music festival ended on Sunday at the Brussels Tour & Taxis site. Initial organiser estimates indicate that there were 52,000 festival-goers over three days.
By comparison, last year there were 68,300 attendees. The record year was 2013 with 82,000 having attendees. This decrease in attendance is thought to be affected by ticketed being pre-bought before the Brussels attacks.
The effect of the attacks has proven to be a phenomenon common to numerous cultural events in Belgium this year. In addition, the unfavourable weather and the Euro quarter finals, in which Belgium had its part to play, was not beneficial for ticket sales both at the venue and during recent weeks.
However, the diversity of the programme generally allowed for a good spread of festival-goers across all six stages. Although the Senegalese musician Youssou N’Dour was blamed for his flight delay and changes had to take place, as a consequence, to Saturday’s programme schedule, he succeeded in pulling in the crowds. So did Goran Bregovic and Arno.
The rain and the black, yellow and red colours (the Belgian tricolour) on Friday evening increasingly gave way to sun and the coloured powdery clouds of the Holi Colour experience. Only about 100 to 200 people were still wanting to watch the Euros by Sunday evening on the giant screen.
The French rapper MHD (known for his single “Champions League”) and Soprano on the main stage at the time of the match galvanised the crowd, who leapt around in every direction.
The latter artist referred to Bob Marley, Michael Jackson and Stromae. On a serious note, the rapper also paid homage to the victims of the Brussels attacks.
Moreover, on Sunday the festival-goers were invited to see life from their neighbour’s eyes, after a clip of refugees from Amnesty International was broadcast on the main stage.