Festival Republic boss Melvin Benn recently spoke to NME about the success of Reading & Leeds 2023. He teased the the line-up and site changes for next year’s edition of the event.
This year’s festival was packed with massive headline performances from Foals, Sam Fender, The 1975, The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Billie Eilish, alongside sets from the likes of Sleep Token, Steve Lacy, Central Cee, Wet Leg and many more.
Speaking to NME backstage on the closing day at Reading, R&L boss Benn said:
“I’m very pleased with how it’s gone this weekend. We’re sat here talking while Rina [Sawayama] is on the main stage. That has been one of the notable things about this weekend – how well a lot of the female acts have gone down and become a core of the festival.
“Mimi Webb pulled a huge crowd and had a great stage presence, MUNA put on a fantastic show and you’ll see the same of Becky Hill.”
He was asked about the overall mood at Reading & Leeds 2023, Benn replied:
“We’ve got a quite broad spectrum of a line-up that hasn’t been dominated by any particular music theme or genre, and that’s been a real strength – especially for the women on the bill and in the audience. There’s been a coming together in that sense. It felt really palpable.
“I was at the Boygenius show in Gunnersbury Park and that felt like a moment. This Reading & Leeds weekend felt like it’s been part of that too.”
He was also questioned if there was an open offer for Lewis Capaldi to return to headline in future, to which he responded:
“I think there will always be an open offer, but at the same time the only thing that needs to be thought about is Lewis’ health. We certainly wouldn’t be having a discussion prior to Lewis’ health being right.”
He was then asked how does the line-up for next year look and questioned if he booked any headliners. Here is what he said:
“We have one of the headliners confirmed, and have had them confirmed for a little while actually. They’ve headlined in the past so we know their strength with it and we’re pleased with that. There are some changes that I’m looking to make – probably some slight stage changes. We don’t stand still at Reading & Leeds and like to reflect what’s going on, so there will be a couple of changes. There are always changes in the artists, but there will be to the stages as well.”