100 years of De Leidsche Flesch
On April 22, the Fleschtival took place: more than 600 people celebrated the 100th anniversary of study association De Leidsche Flesch with music, fun and -of course- a lot of beer in Park Landskroon.
De Leidsche Flesch, study association for physics, astronomy, mathematics and computer science, celebrates its hundredth anniversary this year. Of course, an ivory jubilee should be celebrated with grandeur, so the stage was filled with well-known artists from early afternoon until late in the evening.
Zo Voelt Ivoor (this is what ivory feels like)
Work began as early as the day before the festival: a group of volunteers began building the grounds. Under the watchful eye of curious residents and a local soccer club, the grounds slowly but surely came into being. Even on the morning of the festival, people were still working hard to get everything ready. After some stress and a lot of back pain, the party could finally begin! Many visitors went straight from the entrance to the bar. If there is one place to shamelessly get your first beer at 1 p.m., it's a festival. Especially if you get there early and are still standing in the rain looking at an empty stage.
Dressed in a poncho and armed with a beer in hand, the next destination was the stage. There, the festival was opened by Mio, DJ in mechanic's uniform. You could hear his sound all the way from Corpus. The grounds steadily filled up and by the time Mio handed over the baton to Bronsch, house band of the Flesch, a few hundred people were already walking around.
Bronsch played a few classics and some of their own songs. Most notably, they'd written a song about the centennial of De Leidsche Flesch (Zo Voelt Ivoor) and one about the well-known and widely loved Foobar (Het Fenomeen). Almost every Flesscher in the audience sang along at the top of their voices, or attempted to.
After the Fleschband, it was time for the first outsider artist: DJPJ. Even if his choice of music was not your taste, you could enjoy what was happening on stage. During his act of more than an hour, he was described by everyone as having "clearly the time of his life". He sang, danced and acted out the lyrics. For selfies, he posed without exception.
The fun with DJPJ was followed by a nostalgic act for many festival-goers: Ch!pz. Many students grew up with this group, which has been around since 2003. This act was therefore one of the biggest attractions for the Fleschtival. Even before the group entered the stage, people were screaming and singing. When they started their first song, the party really erupted. Everyone tried to get as close to the stage as possible and all their phones came up. The dance to 1001 Arabian Nights was done everywhere for days after.
And of course, a festival full of physicists is not complete without a real physics snack: the Rino Foundation served their beloved nitrogen ice cream! For hours there was almost always someone waiting for a scoop of Bastogne ice cream. Because a festival is incomplete without a beer in one hand and an ice cream in the other.
Dakterras (roof terrace)
For 45 minutes, Ch!pz danced across the stage. A thunderous applause accompanied them down the stairs, after which an entirely different act followed them. Swifty, known from Dakterras, had the audience jumping for over half an hour. Most festival-goers had a beer in hand when they came on, but by the end they had a beer in their hair. That didn't dampen the fun, and a short trip to the bar later they just kept jumping.
A little breather was provided by DJ Tim Breur. He still played music to jump to, but with quite a few good sing-alongs in between. An ideal time to walk past the bar while singing, or to have a karaoke in the line for the toilets. The rain stopped, the sun broke through and sheltering in the tents was no longer necessary. The crew, scattered around the grounds, also sang and danced along happily.
At seven p.m., the next well-known artist took the stage: Barry Badpak. All the hits were played. Two Kims were even brought on stage for Kimmie, Kimmie, Kimmie: a cover of ABBA's Gimme, Gimme, Gimme. The artists, one of whom wearing their trademark bathrobe, were the most typically Leiden act of the day -which was easy to hear. They were also the final live act: the rest of the evening was taken care of by DJs.
The first of those DJs was Dustkey, founder of the Flesch's DJ Guild. For an hour, he managed to keep the energy high with Drum & Bass. At that time, the sun was setting, so flashlights on phones were waved back and forth and photographers mounted a flash on their cameras. The moon was clearly visible over the grounds, so for the astronomers at least, the event was a success.
The festival was closed by De Gebroeders Scooter. With helmet and all, they came running onto the stage and managed to keep the atmosphere high for two hours. The bar also got a little busy during these final hours, as the DJs had a lot of horns hidden in their mix. With the last horn, their performance ended and the Fleschtival was as good as over.
But of course, De Leidsche Flesch could not leave without singing their Flesch song. Members gathered at the stage and the song spread all over the grounds. As soon as the last notes sounded, security and crew began sweeping visitors off the grounds. Some left right away, others had to be escorted out on someone's shoulder. Beers were quickly downed. And suddenly the grounds were empty and the dismantling could begin, a process that would take the crew well into the night.
The days following the Fleschtival were marked by backaches for the crew and hangovers for the visitors, but mostly a lot of joy among everyone. Committee, crew and visitors agreed: the Flesch could not have wished for a better birthday party.
We dedicate this article to Douwe Remmelts, for his fantastic efforts at this event and in everything he did, and for the great positive influence he had on all members of De Leidsche Flesch.
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