Land Your Dream Gig: How to Score Music Festival Jobs

Dive into the world of music festival jobs with this clear-cut guide. Discover the types of roles on offer, learn how to weave through the networking world, and get tips to polish your application. Ready to join the festival workforce? Read on to learn how.

Key Takeaways

  • Kickstart your journey into the music festival industry by volunteering, networking, and gaining experience through internships. These help build skills, boost your resume and lead to potential employment.
  • Explore various festival jobs suitable for different skill sets and passions, from customer-facing positions to creative and technical roles, and utilize effective application strategies to stand out in this competitive market.
  • Leverage volunteering as a strategic pathway to music festival jobs, build a strong reputation, actively seek career advancement through ongoing learning and networking events, and stay informed of industry trends and job opportunities.

Making sure everything is in order.

Breaking into the festival scene is an exciting journey that can start by working at local venues to host music events. From theaters to fairgrounds, these venues offer the perfect launchpad to understand and participate in the festival scene. But what if you’re a newbie with no existing music industry contacts? Fear not – volunteering, organizing events, and assisting musicians on their tours are excellent ways to make your mark on your dream job.

We will now examine how to identify prospects, strategize effectively, and tailor your application to secure your initial festival job.

Discovering Opportunities

Stepping into the festival scene involves more than just a love for music; it’s about knowing where to look and who to connect with. Start by making a list of record labels, production companies, and venues that participate in festivals you’re interested in. This list will guide potential employers in the music festival industry. Proactively reach out to these contacts, expressing your interest and passion.

But don’t stop there—gaining experience through internships, volunteering, or joining a street team offers a practical way to build a strong foundation, especially if you lack industry experience. These opportunities equip you with practical skills, help you establish connections, and boost your resume for future festival job applications.

Making the Right Moves

Networking is a secret weapon in the festival industry. Connecting with the movers and shakers who organize festivals and can help you advance to more influential roles is critical. Volunteering at festivals can also provide you with a free ticket to the event, allowing you to enjoy the festival while gaining valuable experience. This can be your first step into the festival scene and a less competitive route than directly applying for professional staff positions.

Another way to boost your entry into the music festival scene is by attending local gigs at a local venue. These venues are a hotbed for networking opportunities, offering the chance to connect with local artists and industry professionals. These connections can significantly enhance your chances of getting noticed and booked for music festivals. So, the next time you do a local gig, remember – you are just there for the music. You’re here to make the right moves!

Preparing Your Application

Securing a paid festival staff position requires more than passion – you need a compelling application showcasing your skills and qualifications. Here are some tips to help you create a standout application:

  1. Craft a professional summary that captures your passion for the position.
  2. Use keywords from the job posting to demonstrate your qualifications.
  3. Emphasize transferable skills from past roles, even if they are not directly related to festival work.
  4. Make a lasting impression with your CV to increase your chances of landing your first festival job.

Your cover letter is equally important. Here are some tips to make it stand out:

  • Personalize it to match the job description
  • Provide clear and accessible contact details
  • Introduce yourself professionally
  • Highlight your music-related experience to make your application more attractive to potential employers.

In addition, attending job fairs can allow you to connect directly with potential employers. Check job listings to stay updated on the latest festival job opportunities, including those in festival hires.

Remember, a well-prepared application is your ticket to the desired festival industry, including your favorite festival!

The Spectrum of Festival Jobs


Music festivals offer various job roles that cater to various skill sets. Whether you are a person who thrives in front-house roles or a behind-the-scenes wizard who makes the magic happen, there’s a place for you in the festival scene. Some of the job roles you can find in music festivals include:

  • Brand ambassadors
  • Marketers
  • Sales representatives
  • Hospitality managers
  • Event producers
  • Operations teams
  • PR managers
  • Talent bookers
  • Audio-visual technicians
  • Designers

You will find a role that fits your skills and passion in the music festival industry.

We will now examine these roles in greater detail.

Front House Roles

Front-house roles are the face of the festival—these are the people festival-goers interact with. As a brand ambassador, you’ll greet attendees, excite the brand, and assist with on-site events. If you’re into sales and marketing, you’ll promote the festival, sell tickets, and engage with potential attendees.

On the other hand, hospitality managers ensure that guests have a smooth and memorable experience. These roles require excellent interpersonal skills, a proactive attitude, and a knack for creating positive experiences.

Behind-the-Scenes Magic

Behind every successful festival is a team of hardworking festival organizers who ensure everything runs smoothly behind the scenes. Event producers oversee every festival aspect, from space and talent to attendee experience and logistics. They are the ones who bring the entire festival together, coordinating with various teams to create an unforgettable event.

Another crucial behind-the-scenes role is the operations team. They are responsible for setting up the venue, transporting equipment, feeding staff, and cleaning up after the event. Then, there are PR Managers who manage external communications and act as the face of the festival during public interactions. These roles demand impeccable organization, attention to detail, and the ability to handle pressure.

Creative and Technical Positions

The festival experience wouldn’t be complete without the creative and technical geniuses that bring the event to life. Talent bookers play a thrilling role as they secure prominent performers for the festival roster, from reaching out to managers to ensuring the talent is taken care of on-site. The audio-visual technicians and designers create the festival’s visual and auditory experience. They provide top-notch sound and visual effects that make each performance unforgettable. These roles require a balance of creativity, technical skills, and a deep understanding of the festival’s vibe and the audience’s expectations.

Volunteer to Victory

Volunteering at festivals is a strategic move for those looking to break into the festival scene. Not only does it provide a hands-on experience of the festival industry, but it also opens doors to:

  • Networking opportunities
  • Potential staff positions
  • Showcasing your skills, work ethic, and dedication to potential employers
  • Gaining industry experience
  • Making contacts that can be valuable in your future career

We will now examine the advantages of volunteering and its potential path to staff positions.

Benefits of Volunteering

Volunteering at music festivals offers a world of benefits. It’s an excellent opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the industry, especially if you’re a university student seeking to acquire essential work experience and life skills. Volunteering also opens up networking opportunities, allowing you to meet new people, connect with fellow volunteers and festival staff, and learn from critical people working in the industry.

Additionally, volunteering enhances your CV, demonstrating your commitment to career development in the music festival industry.

From Volunteer to Staff

The transition from a volunteer to a staff member in the festival industry isn’t as daunting as it may seem. If you’ve volunteered at a festival, you’ve already made the first step. Networking is your next move. By seeking out every networking opportunity during your volunteer experience, attending events, and connecting with industry professionals, you build relationships that can lead to staff positions.

Besides networking, showcasing your skills and work ethic as a volunteer is crucial. Here are some qualities to focus on:

  • Be reliable, punctual, and proactive
  • Demonstrate your dedication
  • Communicate effectively
  • Collaborate well with others
  • Maintain a positive attitude

These qualities will enhance your volunteer experience and increase your chances of securing a staff position.

Navigating the Festival Job Market

Once you’ve gained some experience and built your network, it’s time to navigate the festival job market. Like any job market, it’s all about timing and standing out from the competition. But don’t forget—with strategic planning and a unique approach, you can increase your chances of landing your dream festival job.

We’ll consider the role of timing and strategies for making your application distinctive.

Timing is Everything

When it comes to applying for festival jobs, timing is everything. The peak hiring season for festival jobs is typically in January and February, about five months before most festivals take place during the festival season. So, if you’re planning to apply, mark these months in your calendar. Also, keep a close eye on festival websites for job postings.

Platforms like the IIFEA’s Career Network Job Bank or FestivalPro can be valuable resources for compiling staff lists and tracking job openings.

Standing Out in a Crowd

Standing out from the crowd is crucial in the competitive festival job market. One way to make your application stand out is by showcasing your unique skills. Consider developing relevant skills through courses or workshops in event planning, leadership, and communication. If you have a degree in a related field, highlight this in your application.

Attending industry events is another effective way to stand out. These events provide opportunities to meet key industry professionals, learn new skills, and stay updated on industry trends. Engage in genuine conversations, be approachable, and focus on building friendly connections. Remember to follow up after the event with a thank you note, which can leave a lasting impression and increase your chances of landing a festival job.

Once you’ve landed a job in the festival industry, the next step is to maximize your employment. This means building a solid reputation, seeking new challenges, and pursuing career advancement. Whether you’re a brand ambassador or an event producer, there’s always room for growth in the dynamic festival industry.

We will now consider how to cultivate a positive reputation and pursue career progression in this dynamic field.

Building a Reputation

Building a reputation in the festival industry starts with consistently delivering high-quality work. Whether interacting with festival-goers or coordinating backstage operations, strive to leave a positive impression. Beyond your job, receiving positive feedback from attendees and consumers can boost your reputation.

Another way to maintain a stellar reputation is by aligning with the festival’s values. Treat others respectfully, promote best practices among festival attendees, and ensure you’re seen as a positive festival representative.

Career Advancement

Career advancement in the festival industry goes hand in hand with seeking new challenges. As you gain more experience, look for opportunities to:

  • Take on more responsibilities and grow in your role
  • Take on a leadership position
  • Learn new skills
  • Explore different roles within the festival industry

Attending industry events is also a great way to advance your career. These events offer opportunities to meet industry professionals, learn about the latest trends, and discover new job openings.

In addition, staying informed about job opportunities is crucial for career advancement. Here are some ways to do that:

  • Regularly check the websites of your favorite festivals for open positions
  • Seek advice from your school career center
  • Keep a close eye on job boards specialized in festival jobs

Staying Informed: Resources and Networking

Staying informed and connected is crucial in the festival industry. With constant changes and new opportunities, having a network of professionals and access to updated information can make all the difference. Online communities, forums, and networking events are invaluable resources that can help you stay on top of industry trends, connect with fellow festival workers, and learn about job opportunities.

We will now consider utilizing these resources to maintain awareness and connectivity in the festival industry.

Online Communities and Forums

Online communities and forums are a gold mine of information and connections. Joining communities like:

  • Thinkific
  • Tribe
  • Peerboard
  • Mighty Networks
  • Slack
  • Discord
  • Discourse
  • Vanilla Forums

These platforms can help you connect with like-minded individuals, gain new insights, and improve your skills. They are also great for staying updated on job opportunities.

Members often share insights on job openings, offer recommendations, and provide insider tips. So, join these online communities and actively participate in discussions.

Networking Events and Meetups

Networking events and meetups are another great way to stay informed and connected in the festival industry. These events provide opportunities to meet key industry professionals, learn new skills, and stay updated on industry trends. Events like event planning conferences focused on learning, networking, and industry growth can offer unparalleled opportunities to connect with professionals in the festival industry, especially when festivals happen.

Remember to engage in genuine conversations, be approachable, and focus on building friendly connections when attending these events. Instead of pushing your business materials, focus on getting to know the other person. And don’t forget to follow up after the event—a simple thank you note can leave a lasting impression and open doors to future opportunities.


In conclusion, breaking into the festival industry and landing your dream job is a journey that requires research, networking, and a well-prepared application. From volunteering to attending industry events, there are numerous ways to gain valuable experience and connections in the industry. Whether you’re interested in front-house roles, behind-the-scenes magic, or creative and technical positions, the festival industry offers many exciting opportunities. By staying informed through online communities, forums, and networking events, you can increase your chances of landing a music festival job, build a reputation, and seek career advancement. So, are you ready to make your mark in the festival scene?

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I start working in the music festival industry?

Start by seeking opportunities with record labels, production firms, and performance venues involved in the festival. If you’re new to the industry, consider joining a street team, volunteering, or interning with groups at the festival to gain experience. Good luck!

How much do festival performers make?

Festival performers can earn anywhere from $50,000 to half a million at the peak of their popularity, depending on the festival’s size and other factors.

What does a music festival organizer do?

A music festival organizer is responsible for managing all aspects of the event, including booking artists, securing venues, coordinating vendors, managing staff, and ensuring the safety of attendees. They also handle logistical planning and work with various people and businesses to ensure a successful festival.

What do you do at a music festival?

At a music festival, you can listen to live performances by your favorite artists, discover new acts, and enjoy activities such as food and merchandise vending, dance, and performance art. Soak in the vibrant atmosphere and have a fantastic time!

How do you work at a festival?

To work at a festival, start by seeking opportunities with record labels, production firms, and performance venues participating in the festival. Gain experience by joining a street team, volunteering, or interning with groups at the event. This can lead to valuable connections and potential job offers.