MVSON World: Cheshire’s Ibiza?
In the scorching sun on the 16th of July, I arrived at Arley Hall in Cheshire to experience MVSON World, a mini festival put on by MVSON Collective. It is the biggest event the collective has ever hosted and featured two stages, food stalls, and chill-out areas.
MVSON collective has been growing in popularity in Manchester and beyond, as they regularly perform sets globally in party hotspots such as LA and Ibiza. However, creating an event of this scale was one of their biggest ventures to date, and has been something they have been planning for months.
Turning up on the day, I follow the crowd who have arrived via the organised coach, which took people from Manchester to the site and sold out ahead of the event.
In the queue, there is the full festival atmosphere of downing drinks and applying last-minute glitter. The crowd has dressed for the occasion, with an array of neon colours and animal prints.
Arriving through the gates, the bright colours of the audience’s clothes are reflected in the decorations arranged on the site. A large pillar in an array of pastel tones stands near the main stage, with a range of positive messages printed on it. Near the other stage, a large globe imprinted with the MVSON logo signals where their merchandise can be bought.
The crowd is clearly enthusiastic, and throughout the day I find myself in many drunk conversations with people who exclaim (too) loudly that they are “so up for it” and “far prefer this from bigger festivals such as Leeds.”
Attending in the heat and when I was entirely hooked on this year’s Love Island, the festival does give off an Ibizan party vibe. With techno sounds ranging from disco to deep house, this event was perfect for lovers of electronic DJ sets.
My favourite sets had to be that of Pawsa and MVSON Collective themselves. With their expert mixing and their ability to read the audience, it felt as though they had us in the palm of their hands. A woman next to me shouted “marry me” towards the end of their set, which I’m guessing was directed towards the collective as a whole.
Yet I would struggle to fully class this event as a festival. Although the site featured a yoga tent, I only saw this used as a place for people to sunbathe. The “village” of food stalls and shops ended up just being a line of food outlets, a vape shop and a place supplying glitter. Apart from taking a breather on the benches or beanbags, the only thing to do was dance at one of the two stages, which, as perhaps one of the only attendees not on MDMA, began to feel a little limiting after 11 hours.
But for their first event of this kind, there were many things MVSON World did right. Whilst queuing and transport organisation are often two of the biggest challenges when it comes to day events, MVSON World felt managed. Queues for bars were minimal in comparison to previous festivals I have been to, and drink prices weren’t totally extortionate, which is saying something. We barely had to wait to get in, and the event was set up with a welfare team if needed.
MVSON Collective has already begun promoting MVSON World 2023, which should be popular with their loyal fan base. You can buy tickets here.