Former UWA law student produces CoLAB Festival at UWA

CoLAB Festival producer Michael Lloyd (front) with (from left) event manager Ashleen Franz, promotions co-ordinator Athina Hilman and event co-ordinator Stuart Whitlock, of Quinns Rock.
CoLAB Festival producer Michael Lloyd (front) with (from left) event manager Ashleen Franz, promotions co-ordinator Athina Hilman and event co-ordinator Stuart Whitlock, of Quinns Rock.

AS a former UWA law student, event producer Michael Lloyd is able to reminisce about the days he spent socialising on the Crawley campus's Oak Lawn.

So when it came to deciding on a venue for new boutique CoLAB Festival ” a collaborative 18+ event for live music and art ” Lloyd knew exactly where he wanted to hold it.

‘Every festival runs in the middle of a football oval, so we looked at interesting spaces where you can use great trees, lawn and buildings to make it a cool space,’ he said.

‘The whole event originated from going to festivals and not being 100 per cent happy with the experience and wanting to do it better with a better venue, a really good crowd with not too many people, lower ticket prices, a great line-up of Australian acts on one main stage, fantastic food and making it a really interesting space to spend the day where it’s not just music, but art installations, hawkers’ villages and themed bars.’

Lloyd said his team started from scratch, gathering various opinions and getting UWA students and clubs involved, which resulted in additions like a chemistry lab-themed bar run by students in lab coats mixing kooky concoctions.

He then pitched the event to artists with the notion it was not all about one big headline act.

‘There are eight national acts who are on the brink or flirted with big things,’ Lloyd said.

‘Hermitude, Midnight Juggernauts and The Jungle Giants are really well-respected and exciting bands who have either been around for a little while or just about to jump in.

‘The Kite String Tangle in particular has just gone from a relatively small profile band 12 to 18 months ago to just everywhere with a great album.’

Rounding out the line-up is Sable, Indian Summer, Gangs of Youths, The Creases and Citizen Kay.

Lloyd said he hoped CoLAB would attract a great mix of UWA students, ex-UWA students and those who enjoyed going to music festivals for the right reasons.

‘I’m looking forward to just watching people soak up the atmosphere,’ he said.

‘I can’t wait to see The Kite String Tangle because I’ve never seen them live and The Jungle Giants later in the night because I think they’re going to be huge fun.

‘And just sitting down, eating some great food and enjoying a couple of drinks with my friends.’