Rock for People interview with Michal Thomes, festival director

Rock for People festival is finally around the corner! The long-awaited biggest edition will welcome from 15 to 18 June 2022 bands like Green Day, Biffy Clyro, Fall Out Boy and also a lot of new music from the scene. We wanna be ready for the big event, so we interviewed Michal Thomes, the festival director. 

 Michal Thomes rock for people

Michal Thomes interview

Welcome to Brainstorming Magazine, it’s an honour for us! Our readers want to know everything about Rock For People. First question: how has the organization of an event changed since the pandemic? What are the biggest difficulties at the moment?

Probably every festival promoter doesn’t like things out of their control. Typically it’s the weather, but there are at least some production adjustments and arrangements that we can do. With the regulations that almost every state has put in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there wasn’t much that could be done. Therefore we tried to do our best to put on smaller events (like the two-day Rock for People Hope with a capacity of 7k, with bands like The Hives, Mando Diao and Maneskin).

Also, we tried a festival in a virtual environment – Rock for People In The Game! It was a world premiere in bringing festival grounds into a gaming world, for which most of the performers prepared a unique set. The main problem in the upcoming season is, in my opinion, the outflow of workers from the festival business. They found other jobs during the pandemic, and it will be hard to get them back or replace them.

After two years of postponements we are finally here. How did you manage to carry on the event without being unmotivated?

For us, the motivation is clear – we are working on the biggest year in the history of Rock for People festival, and we must not disappoint the audience who bought tickets for it. In the meantime, we were working on the aforementioned projects and preparing the festival grounds, which we leased for a whole year during the pandemic.

What are the basic rules to build a Festival like Rock For People?

To have a good team, count on the fact that not everything will be easy and that some things will end up differently than one is expecting.

Which are the funniest bands you worked with over these years?

Generally, it’s more fun with smaller bands. The big ones are more focused on professionalism when doing demanding tours.

How do you choose the artists in the lineup?

Together with the booking team, we always try to put together a lineup that will entertain us and the visitors. It’s always about the right mix of big and middle names of the world music scene, interesting discoveries, and promising newcomers. We also pay attention to the local scene, which I hope we inspire when mixing them with international acts.

And an artist you wanted to bring at the Rock For People but you never did?

I have many dreams, and some of them will come true this year – Green Day, Weezer, Royal Blood, or Fall Out Boy. I’ll save a few names like Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, or System of a Down for another time…

Many of our readers would like to work in the events industry. What advice could you give them?

Go for it!

The last one: what’s the best thing music has teached to you over the years?

Music is extremely important for life, and I can’t imagine it without it. During the pandemic, I learned that the concert/festival experience is irreplaceable and best consumed with friends.


You should read this –> Rock for People: the festival for everyone!

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