Once in a Full Moon at Koh Phangan Island – the big boys are coming to town?



Once In A Full Moon Koh Phangan
Once In A Full Moon Koh Phangan

I’ve been to six FMPs in my time. I love Haad Rin. I’m a travel writer based in the UK and I recently got sent this press release.

Does anyone know anything about it? What do people think? Is it a good thing – bring some order to the growing chaos? Or a bad thing – commercializing an event that is all about a bunch of people just having a good time? Any comments welcome!

If you’d be happy for me to quote you in an article I’m writing here in the UK that would be great. Peace and good times to all.

:: PRESS RELEASE ::

Once In A Full Moon

Haad Rin Beach, Koh Phangan, Thailand A once in a lifetime dance music experience Saturday 23rd April 2005

4pm – 11am next day Suggested donation 100 Baht on entry which goes to Haad Rin beach and Save The Children.

For the first time in history a dance music event to rival parties at destinations such as Ibiza and Goa, is reaching the shore of one of the most beautiful places in the world…. The monthly Full Moon party has gained global recognition as the best beach dance festival in the world. For the last 16 years more than 2 million visitors have partied their butts off at what must be one of dance music’s Seven Wonders of the World. Despite their popularity, Full Moon Parties remain a lovable but haphazard affair, with a distinct air of disorganization and improvisation.

Once In A Full Moonis the first time the event will be fully modernized, with 5 huge arenas of internationally renowned DJs including London’s own Soulsonic DJ crew and the huge Heat UK collective. Once In A Full Moon will also bring in state of the art sound and lighting equipment, a defined music policy, and a highly sophisticated method of post-party clean-up. Organizers anticipate up to 40,000 revelers, some 30,000 more than the usual number descending on the beach. And it wont all be for nothing…. 28% of the income going back into improving Koh Phangan’s facilities, and a partnership with Save The Children ensures a chunk of sponsorship proceeds goes to victims of the recent devastating Asian Tsunami disaster.

DJ line up as follows Main Arena: Commander Tom (Germany); John Thursday (Germany); Leeroy Thornhill (The Prodigy, UK); DJ Hi Fi Princess (USA); Ryan Dent (SA / Netherlands); Futon (Live – Thailand) Ian Betts (Heat UK)

Soulsonic Arena: Stuart Patterson (UK); Terry Farley (UK); Anthony Cox (UK); Matthias Heilbronn (Germany); Leo Elstob (UK); Steve O (Canada) ; Murray Richardson (UK)

Heat UK Arena:Spencer Freeland; Marc French; Steve Blake; Ian Betts;

Mint Bar Arena: Pablo Matinez; FANATIX (Aaron Ross + Neil Pierce) (UK); Chris Samba (UK); Barbara Tucker (Live –USA) ; Robert Owens (Live – USA)

Bed Supper Club Arena: DJ Octo; Fred Jungo (USA); Josh Ezelle (USA); Emanuelle (France); NGL + Simon Bar (Thailand)

LINE UP SUBJECT TO CHANGE

8 thoughts on “Once in a Full Moon at Koh Phangan Island – the big boys are coming to town?

  • March 15, 2005 at 6:49 am
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    Its a good that there is money being donated to charity, but I do believe that the true spirit of what is the full moon party is being sucked dry. The full moon party is all about the chaos and disorganisation of a bunch of people randomly coming together and just partying. Losing this means that it will lose the freedom of what is the full moon party.

    Reply
  • March 16, 2005 at 9:57 pm
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    Okay, these are just my thoughts and we all all have our own…….

    Attending the night, I think anyone will have an awesome time regardless of the commercialisation ‘status’ of the FMP. Lets face it, any place that awesome with that many people all feeling the good times has got to be fun….although with a projected 40,000, a little cramped. How many beds has the island currently got on it in total….?

    The type of person attending may change, or should I say, be added to by the dance festival followers, those who follow DJ’s globally, those just thinking it seems like a great place to go and get, excuse my language, fucked up, those reading about it on the net like I just did, or maybe on lastminute.com

    But has the Full Moon not been commercialised by the Thai’s. And a long time ago? Is the monopoloy of such a surge of income that comes monthly to the island not sat neatly in their hands? Is the stage not set for us to play out island life?

    We are all going to an arena, paying for boats, taxis, bikes (if your brave or stupid? I still havent worked that one out), bungalows, food. The arena is-KPG.

    The true days of the FMP are a myth among the revellers. The days of unity left, when the sound system became sound system(s). The twised music tastes diffusing the beach with an all to familiar commercial sound trespassing on the sounds once danced too.

    I have also witnessed the full moon very high on drugs, very drunk and very sober. Each and every time I have come away feeling i have had an experience.

    Some times, I sit back and look around at the Thais associated with making this thing, many looking tired and tiring of the beat they seem so well to ignore which would drive any other soul to insanity after 14 hours. I clock the corn on the cob lady who I have bought far to many cobs from (not available at all times on the island in all places) and wonder what the ***** is happening here??? Look at the bunch of mash heads, including myself, messing up this place.

    What you see as…..”commercialising an event that is all about a bunch of people just having a good time?” Is true, but we are having a good time in a very organized way. Lets face it that many people don’t just appear on a beach with music, and food and transport………

    I think the preposed Once In a Full Moon may improve safety, if not just things like the whole electric set-up. Sounds like nothing, but, one life has been lost from bad wiring on the beach in the past few years. Only one! Imagine it being your brother or sister!!
    And more stringent rules on transprt safety, may actually be adhered to…no more boat messes, although, I read some where thats being sorted out.

    Koh Phangan is changing and the people on it have surely lost their battle with allowing FOREIGN commecialisation onto their island. Now its transition stage, lets hope the beautiful bits stay beautiful and the ugly bits are developed to a quality standard of commercialisation……..lets face it. Its here in Thailand and on KohPhangan and anywhere with such beauty that we as humans strive to get too, regardless of whether your first or last.

    I don’t wanna sound down on the island as I do love it. It is very special and there are still places that you and twenty friends may be lucky enough to rent a house or find a place, that with a little sound system can be yinto your very own non-commercial full moon party.

    Lets hear your views, cos thats mine.

    peace

    Reply
    • March 17, 2005 at 5:27 am
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      thoughtful comment. haad rin has been in transition since i first visted way back in 1988. it is commercial. i am all for thie event in april as the focus is on underground dance music, which the party usually was. it has disappointed me in recent years to hear the kind of music that is played at places like the drop in and cactus

      Reply
    • March 17, 2005 at 1:27 pm
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      Thanks for your comments. I agree with a lot of what you’re saying. It’s been a few years since my last FMP and it looks like things have changed a lot since the days I was there. I already noticed the increase in people in cool trainers and Tshirts rather than body paint and bare foot back in 2001 and I too witnessed a couple of fights. My concern is numbers. 40,000 people on that beach is plain stupid though. It isn’t big enough. Where is everyone going to take a piss (or worse!?). I also wonder about the locals’ perspective. I’d love to hear from a local Thai about how the event has gone from being a cash cow to being a monthly nightmare (fs it has?) Anyway. Would love to use your commentary in my piece I’m writing. Maybe you could drop me an email with some more info about you please? Are you going to Once? How many FMPs have you been to etc! Thanks and heres to a few more rocking times on Haad Rin beach
      jeremyhead@hotmail.com

      Reply
      • March 21, 2005 at 5:38 am
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        It’s all about money! The suggested 100 baht admission is just the start; the charity spin is to soften the blow! The commercialization may attract a slightly larger crowed but 40,000 is probably a bit optimistic. Many visitors don’t even get a room and just commute to and from Samui.

        The question really is the commercialization of the FMP good for the Island of KPG? The jury is still out on that one. It could be its demise! Thaksin is not a fan of late night partying and drugs. He isn’t even keen on backpacker either so anything to reduce that type of traveler would be in line with his thinking also. I would have thought a lower profile would have been the order of the day for the party. The fact that a total of 24 people died at the January full moon can’t be sitting well with the government. I’m not sure that this new approach to the party will be one of longevity. Just thoughts!

        Reply
        • March 21, 2005 at 2:22 pm
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          Thanks for your comments. I’d love to mention them. But to do so I need your name, age and where you live at the moment! email me if you can: jeremyhead@hotmail.com
          Thanks

          Reply
  • March 17, 2005 at 12:36 pm
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    2 much commersialsm and touristy! Swedish ppl young 17 year old girls, families..ppl walking and lookin at the beach nd ppl taking pictures you can not dance becus no body almost do it on the beach..Its FUCKED now that they also have to close the fullmoon 8.30 its just getting worse iam in phangan now and iam tellin you this is the last time i come i will come agen if and when iam in thailand but to meet frieands not for the partiesand the ppl anymore!

    Reply
    • March 21, 2005 at 5:43 am
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      Hey I like the 17 year girl thing, nothing wrong with that mate. “unless your gay of course”
      There are many more reasons to go to Koh Phangan, the party is only one night…

      Reply

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