Ahead of the seventeenth edition of the Caprices Festival, which kicks off on Friday at Crans-Montana in Southern Switzerland, having been postponed from April, Access spoke to festival president Joseph Bonvin about the challenges involved in creating a scaled-down, Covid-secure, version of the event this year.

The festival will run over two weekends, 18-29 September and 25-27 September. In order to comply with the country’s health regulations, the event will have a reduced capacity of 1,000 per day with the audience divided into zones of up to 300 people The line-up includes Sven Väth, Dubfire and Archie Hamilton.

What have been the biggest challenges involved in setting up the event this year? 

“We had to review all the plans; access, bars and changing rooms. Another challenge was creating a quality line-up of DJs who come from authorised countries. This required contacting all DJs individually to find out where they are physically coming from and to ensure that they comply with the current health regulations. We also had to create an app that commits audience members to zones within the festival and helps us keeps track of them on behalf of our health authorities.

What are the local guidelines and how supportive have authorities been?

As well as dividing the audience into zones of a maximum of 300 people, it is also necessary to ensure we can follow-up with all the people who participate in the festival. In order to do that we need to keep a record of their name, telephone number, address and zone of their ticket. The health authorities and police are working closely with us to make this event happen, and have provided support to help us find the best solutions.

What has been the reaction from fans and talent

The fans are really happy that there is finally a festival in our region this summer, and we hope to be able to fill the venues. The line-up is of exceptional quality for such a small event and we thank all the artists who played the game and agreed to fit within our budget. The measures that we have had to put in place in order to stage the festival may be common in the future, we hope not, but if so the event will be an experiment that we can learn from for the future.