Breakout: Organizers begin countdown to Fife’s biggest music festival

Organizers of Breakout, which takes place over three days on Kirkcaldy seafront, have started distributing leaflets to several thousand people living closest to the proposed site.

The aim is to inform them of plans which will see part of the Esplanade closed for a week to set up the stages for the festival which will bring together a host of major Scottish bands at Lang Toun from May 27-29.

Lineup includes Wet Wet Wet, Midge Ure, The Skids, Big Country, Goodbye Mr McKenzie, Gun, Hue And Cry as well as the Red Hot Chili Pipers.

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The skids (Photo: Colin Wright)

The festival will feature two stages, the main one being located at The Basin – the traditional truck park at the end of the Esplanade – and another smaller dance and acoustic stage along the Esplanade.

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Up to 30,000 music fans could flock to town over the three days to enjoy the live music.

The waterfront is home to the annual Links Market, but this is the first time it has been turned into a live music venue.

The map showing the road closures proposed for Breakout

And with houses right in front, and the road being one of the main thoroughfares through town, organizers have gone to great lengths to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible.

As part of their community involvement, they distribute 3,000 flyers to residents.

Work began last weekend and will continue over the next two weeks.

Ian Arnott, the man behind the festival, said: “If there are any questions the leaflets will help.

Fife artists attending the Breakout Festival (left to right) Cammy Barnes, Phil Ciarletta, Billy Reekie and Dionne Hickey

“We have a host of wonderful bands lined up and everyone is looking forward to it, but having it staged on the Esplanade poses logistical challenges, so it’s important we keep people informed.”

The road closures are based on existing plans for the annual Links Market, and part of the Prom from the Basin up to just before Food Warehouse – the former Lidl store – will be closed for a week to allow time for building the scenes and settle down fencing.

There will still be access to Links Street while the diversions are in place.

Midge Ure (Photo: Cath Ruane)

Organizers say noise levels will be monitored throughout the event, with bands performing from noon until 11 p.m.

Sound checks will only be offered to headliners and, if required, will take place at 10:00 a.m. on the day of their performance.

Security staff will also be on hand to manage crowds and ensure they disperse as quietly as possible – the aim is for the site to be emptied by 11.30pm each evening.

The festival will also include fairground attractions between the stages, from 1:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Ian added: “Everyone at Breakout is committed to making sure this event is a huge success and runs safely.”

With just over two months until the event, organizers are starting to ramp up their behind-the-scenes preparations.

Ian added: “It takes time to set up the infrastructure for a festival.

“We will close the roads at midnight on Sunday in order to be there the next morning. We want to get that race clear and build everything.

“We have to create the stages, put up fencing around the site and then bring in PA systems and giant TV screens and generators.

“We are happy with everything that has happened so far – we are exactly where we want to be in our preparations at the moment.

“The team behind it has 170 years of experience in organizing these types of events between them.”

The countdown should trigger the next wave of ticket sales.

Organizers have yet to add a few bands to its bill, but the vast majority of names have already been confirmed.

As well as established names, Breakout will feature a host of musicians from Fife, while the winners of a Battle of the Bands will also be able to perform on the main stage.

This competition will start in Styx on March 27 and April 3, with the two rounds organized by

Collette Burns from The Letty Rock Show on community radio station K107fm.

She has already announced the first bands that will perform. With more to reveal in the countdown to round one.

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Gerald R. Schneider