10 February 2023

This summer’s ultimate indie weekender will be set in Lithuania’s biggest prison

8 Festival will host Mac DeMarco, King Krule, and Slowthai in a century-old Lithuanian former prison.

The new music weekender, fondly labelled as 8 festival, will hold a capacity of 3000 festival goers from the 17th until the 19th of June. Held last year for the first time, the 2023 version is set to be bigger and better, with a whole new venue to introduce its place in the festival-sphere. The obscure location in question will be the Lukiškės Prison 2.0 in the capital of the country, Vilnius. 

Mac DeMarco, King Krule, and Slowthai are among the impressive list of 16 acts set to perform, with others including Sleaford Mods, Black Country, New road, and shame. 

“Now this is a real festival and a signature lineup. No fillers. No small print. No bullshit” says 8 festival’s website. “A venue says a lot about a festival. We will never forget how we got here…Be there, grow free, or have a damn good alibi.”

The venue of Lukiškės Prison served as the biggest and most modern prison in the Russian empire, since its construction in 1905. It was home to roughly 1000 inmates before its closure in 2019 and is now being transformed into a cultural hub for art and music lovers. Live music concerts, performances, exhibitions, guided tours, bars, and food trucks are already set up in the space, following the government turning it into a versatile entertainment venue.  

With its accolades including a shoot location for series four of Stranger Things, the former prison and its six buildings now include a hospital and the St Nicholas Orthodox Church, with a largely designated events space perfect for acts like Baxter Dury and Bombay Bicycle Club to perform.

My Bloody Festival, as their Instagram name and hashtag is called, has been set up by Lithuanian promoter 8 days a week, hence is dubbed 8 festival. The three-day ticket starts from €120.

  • Writer Ella Chadwick
  • Banner Image Credit Instagram @mybloodyfestival

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