It's easy to feel isolated as a Goth, and if you're lucky, you count a few good Goth friends in your local area. Creatures of the night residing in large cities in England, Germany and the United States fare a little better with meet-ups and nightclubs. But these events, spread across these three hubs of Gothdom, bring together tens of thousands of like-minded counterculturals to dance, shop, play, run and more.
Step into a darker, louder, and more elegant world with these music festivals and inventive Goth events.
Wave Gotik Treffen
Easily one of the largest, longest-running, most famous and most varied Goth festivals in the world, Wave Gotik Treffen is a raucous meeting of Goth, Cybergoth, Steampunk and other fringe subcultures from Friday night to Tuesday morning over Pentecost in Leipzig, Germany. Some 200 musical acts perform, their genres ranging from folk and Medieval to punk, Industrial, Goth Metal and many more.
Folded into the concerts and club events are Viking and Pagan markets, Renaissance fairs, fetish events, artist signings, literary readings and more.
Bats Day in the Fun Park
Billed as the largest event for dark subculture on the West Coast, Bats Day in the Fun Park is an annual weekend-long event held in Anaheim, California. Now in its 17th Market, where vendors hawk Goth wares; a costumed ball with a haunted-house theme; art shows; and a daylong trip to Disneyland that includes a scavenger hunt and group photo in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Infest, another long-running event, is an annual three-day music festival dedicated to fringe genres with a Gothic edge, including industrial, EBM, Futurepop, Deathrock, Darkwave, Gothic rock and many more. Held at the University of Bradford Union in Bradford in the north of England, Infest has a full festival scope including vendors, Djs and nightclubs. Now in its 18thgrown to draw acts and visitors from around the globe.
M'era Luna Festival
Held every August in Hildesheim since 2000, M'era Luna is one of the largest dark music events in Germany. Its location – a former British army base – and events, including concerts on a large stage and in a hangar, as well as DJ sets on Friday and Saturday nights, more than merit the nearly 25,000 visitors that flood the venue every year. Its metal, industrial and Goth bands have included the likes of The Sisters of Mercy, Placebo, Bauhaus, The Birthday Massacre and many, many more.
A charity run with a sick twist, Vampire 5K sees groups of white-shirt-wearing "civilians" and black-shirt-wearing "vampires" running for their lives and their prey, respectively. After being tagged by a vampire twice, a civilian turns vamp, and red powder zones, where onlookers throw red powder onto civilians, ensure fleeing victims look appropriately bloody. Held in Denver, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New Orleans and Washington, D.C., the event benefits blood donations centers (natch) and features an afterparty where normals and supernaturals can mingle.
Whitby Goth Weekend
Whitby Goth Weekend, held twice yearly in April and October, is a festival with a serious Gothic pedigree. Whitby, England, is where Dracula was written, and is also a prominent location in the novel itself. Goths from around England and the world flock to Whitby each spring and Halloween for two days of concerts, markets, nightclub events and more.
Additional activities spill over onto Thursday, Sunday and Monday; among them are extra markets and club nights, picnics, photoshoots, boat trips, a custom car show, and even a charity soccer match.
Endless Night Vampire Ball
Held annually in New Orleans, New York City and Berlin, Endless Night is a one-night club event the feel of which is described as masquerade ball meets vampire court, plus the energy of a rock concert. Burlesque and cabaret performances add class to the already chic gathering, which enforces a strict dress code. Squeak by on basic black, fangs and a mask, or garner the proper approval with a blood-curdling outfit in the vein of serious Steampunk, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Eyes Wide Shut, latex, Gothic Lolita or many other dark subcultures.
See the Vampires dancing the night away here.
Whether you're looking for a one-off Goth club night to attend, or follow your favorite Goth bands on the festival circuit religiously, these major events are inductions into the larger worldwide Goth clan. Find new music and make friends and memories with these sinister soirees.
To attend any of these festivals you will need these essentials:
You are welcome :)
Have you ever attended one of these festivals? Are there any you know of we should add to this list? Comment below!
Courtesy of real-whitby.co.uk, good-days.ru, auto-gyro.com.