Most of us haven’t been to a festival in at least 18 months, so the excitement and sense of anticipation were palpable as a large crowd of women gathered in a field in England to celebrate Femme Fest 2021.

The Madonna tribute, Lady Gaga, ABBA and other tribute bands had us gathered to watch, dance & socialise like Pre Covid days. For me, an old hand at LGBTQ and mainstream festivals, the highlight was meeting old friends I haven’t seen since last time I was at a festival or party and making new ones along the way. 

Yes, like any first time event (even without COVID stresses), there were teething problems but looking around at women dancing, smiling, even kissing, in my opinion Femme Fest pulled it off.

On the Friday, before going in I met with a LGBTQ single mums’ group, many of us meeting for the first time face to face. After a few bands Fionalisa (aka 22 Shillings) played her set. I think she had undersold what a great DJ she is. We all danced like it was 1999!

Saturday’s highlights included new EastEnders recruit Heather Peace and the lovely Sandra D. 

On the Sunday, while many of us were nursing sore heads and sore legs from too much dancing, I was lucky enough to get to interview Greymatter before they performed. Greymatter are a lesbian band, who can now boast that they’ve been together 20 years. They left everyone on a festival high with their repertoire of well loved covers as well as their own compositions.

After Sunday’s dancing was done, those of us left enjoyed Fire Pit till the small hours. Considering plenty of us had had a late one Sunday night, I was pretty impressed to see that most vans and tents had gone by 10.30am Monday and the empty field looked just as we’d found it. Well done to all the volunteers and attendees, bring on Femme Fest 2022!


Rob Harkavy interviewed Femme Fest organiser Fionalisa back in April. Check it out here.

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