Red Bull Culture Clash is a unique test: four stages, four sounds and one winner, judged by a crowd of thousands voting with their feet and lung power for the crew that’s killing it.
Needing someone to inject a new level of epic into the production of this biggest of musical battles, we were challenged to cater for both a 20,000+ live crowd and a huge online audience… and to make it bigger and better, with more social noise, than ever before.
To quote Red Bull: “Outside the basic rules of engagement, anything goes.”
What we did
Working together with Red Bull to fire this innovative live music experience into a new stratosphere, Smyle helped to create the competition from the ground up.
Our role wasn’t not just about booking the four crews who competed for the crown or the O2 as a venue. We helped to set the rules and designed each of the four stages to ensure each artist’s sound system looked unique and reflected their style completely.
With this unique combination of headline artists on stage, we then increased the scale of the gig to a whole new level – taking responsibility for the lighting, video plot, various audience activations triggered online, and directing the show to make sure it made some noise on camera and radio.
Unlike any other show, the Red Bull Culture Clash is where theatre meets music for the 21st century embedded within a festival-scale production… and Smyle delivered.
The result was by far the rowdiest event yet and, with the added nerves of the whole thing going out live on both BBC Radio 1 and 1Extra, Smyle made the unpredictable feel perfectly seamless.
The 20,000 venue was sold out six weeks before the show, with an additional 1.4 million online global fans watching and listening via a live stream, and more than 250,000 votes cast to unlock surprises which enhanced the on-stage action.
While Eskimo Dance, UKG All Stars, Wiz Khalifa & Taylor Gang and eventual winners Mixpak all made their mark, the event was to become the number one Red Bull UK event ever in terms of social conversation.
Over two million views of Culture Clash videos on YouTube in six days, a tweet from Drake that went viral and the only UK event to ever trend globally… To quote Vice.com: “Who needs the Brits when we have Culture Clash?”