Patrons in chairs having their view blocked by people standing in front.
Patrons in chairs having their view blocked by people standing in front. Blainey Woodham

Great fold-up chair debate

"EVERYONE sitting in a fold-up chair in front of the mixing desk must pick it up and move it behind the mixing desk."

The announcement from a Bluesfest organiser 20 minutes before Cold Chisel took to stage was met with applause from inside and outside the Mojo tent.

The great chair debate isn't a new one and the official ruling is the sixth entry in the festival's Frequently Asked Questions.

Seating behind the mixing desk is the rule for both the main stage (Mojo) and Crossroads stage.

"Everybody who wants to be in front of the mixing desk must be prepared to stand," the website reads.

"If chairs in the seating area are found to be empty for a period of 30 minutes at any time, they will be removed."

Kerry Whitehead, who was seated comfortably behind the Mojo mixing desk yesterday said it's the first time she's brought a chair to the festival.

"There's two reasons," she said. "The acts in this tent are all we want to see tonight and I'm having an operation on my knee in a few weeks and standing on it all day would just be too much.

"Otherwise we'd be up the front."

Sitting on the edge of the great divide, between the standing and sitting, Ms Whitehead couldn't see anything on stage.

"I'm so short I can't see if I'm standing up the front anyway," she laughed.

Tim Baker and Glen Connell from Sydney, who are in Byron Bay for three days of the festival said they can see both sides.

"We understand when they have children and families," Mr Baker said. "But when dusk falls it should be a free-for-all."

Mr Connell said he can see there's a generation gap, but he can't see himself ever bringing a chair to a festival.

"I wouldn't want to carry it around with me all day," he said.

If your chair has disappeared from a tent, you can find it in lost and found.



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