Throughout the world, the number of festivals has grown exponentially in the last two decades, as people celebrate local and regional cultures, but perhaps more importantly as local councils and other groups seek to use festivals both to promote tourism and to stimulate rural development. However, most studies of festivals have tended to focus almost exclusively on the cultural and symbolic aspects, or on narrow modelling of economic multiplier impacts, rather than examining their long-term implications for rural change.
This book therefore has an original focus. It is structured in two parts: the first discusses broad issues affecting music festivals globally, especially in the context of rural revitalisation.
The second part looks in more detail at a range of types of festivals commonly found throughout North America, Europe and Australasia, such as country music, jazz, opera and alternative music festivals. The authors draw on in-depth research undertaken over the past five years in a range of Australian places, which traces the overall growth of festivals of various kinds, examines four of the more important and distinctive music festivals, and makes clear conclusions on their significance for rural and regional change.