Ten thousand fill Praia do Tonel.jpg

Ten thousand fill Praia do Tonel

THE FIRST ever edition of the music festival, Sagres Surf Fest, was held on the cliff tops of Praia do Tonel last week. Over 10,000 people turned up on the first day to see performances from Xavier Rudd, Michael Franti & Spearhead and soul star, Patrice. The second day was also well attended, with bands Natiruts and Slightly Stoopid rounding off proceedings, reports The Resident’s Ruth Sharpe.

The festival grounds were set up next to Sagres’ famous fort above Praia do Tonel, one of the most popular surfing areas in the region, hidden away in the extreme south west of the Algarve. The cold winds did not stop the influx of young people, who created a remarkable atmosphere in the small fishing town. As the music came to a close, thousands of fans stayed on, congregating by the fort in order to take in the magnificent view of the sun rising over the cliffs – a renowned activity in Sagres among locals and tourists alike.

Highlights over the two days included sets from Australian Xavier Rudd, an innovative one man band, who managed to simultaneously play a range of drums, didgeridoos and guitars while singing. Michael Franti & Spearhead’s set, from 11.30pm until 1pm, on the first night was rapturously received with onlookers seeming amazed by the quality of music and energy on show from the American musicians. The headline act, Patrice, kept everyone bouncing into the early hours with another high-energy set, showcasing his eclectic mix of soul, reggae and hip-hop.

In addition to the main stage, the Dance Tent and wide range of other attractions on show produced a great carnival atmosphere, signaling a huge success for organisers, who will surely be staging the event annually from now on.