The great untold story of Glastonbury Festival; how Roy Gurvitz and old friend Michael
Eavis, Glastonbury founder, began a new British cultural movement.
Lost in the Festival follows Roy’s rags to riches journey and retraces Britain’s
underground history to see how a band of troublesome travellers were brought together to create Lost Vagueness: a vibrant extravaganza that would save Glastonbury Festival from bankruptcy.
But after a decade of notoriety, Roy’s explosive temper drove Michael to end the party. Desperation would drive Roy to find help from an unexpected source, would he keep his integrity or sell-out to save his dream.
Back in the late 1990s Roy rescued Glastonbury from the brink of financial ruin by
persuading the nation to come join his party, Lost Vagueness. Initially conceived as a late after hours hang out for the travelling festival crew, Lost Vagueness, expanded over the following decade, into the most popular and original entertainment experience at the festival with over 8 venues and 1000 performers. For many festival goers, Lost
Vagueness was the main attraction at Glastonbury, ‘the festival within the festival’.
Its extraordinary success was dependent on the relationship between Roy and Michael
which was built on trust and, in the beginning at least, mutual need.
Faced with hordes of angry drop out travellers from Thatcher’s Britain, Michael needed a go between.
Roy, with his offbeat imagination and persuasive charm needed a champion for his elaborate show. The 30,000 revellers that packed the Lost Vagueness fields each year might have saved Glastonbury from the brink of bankruptcy but it also provided Roy with a much needed living.
Shot over several years, Director Sofia Olins had unrestricted access to all the music,
mayhem, magic and madness of this post-punk gypsy circus just as it peaked – when Kate and Pete were rumoured to have got married in the ‘chapel’; 25,000 people joined in a world record attempt snog-a–thon and 100,000 people tried to gate crash Madness’s not very secret gig.
Then in 2007 it suddenly and spectacularly went wrong – and she kept shooting as Lost Vagueness and its creator Roy crashed and burned.
Two days before the festival was due to open Roy discovered Michael Eavis had invited a rival burlesque show into Glastonbury.
Roy’s bitter onsite outbursts culminated in him withdrawing Lost Vagueness from the 2007 festival and Roy refusing all further contact with his one-time mentor.
Convinced he had been destroyed by the corporatisation of Glastonbury, Roy’s saviour
ironically arrived in the form of a big events contract with a giant drinks brand. The twist in the tale of Lost in the Festival is that Roy was squashed by his friends and rescued by his enemies.