San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Still Crazy, Festival Gets New Location, Theme

It’s a crazy world out there, and Mundoloco wants to celebrate.

The fifth annual Festival Mundoloco, featuring performances by international dance and music groups, is returning April 4 with a new theme, “Water World,” and location, “in the forest” outside the Autódromo La Guácima in Alajuela, northwest of San José.

Last year, traffic tie-ups marred the event, held at Monte El Pizote in Sabanilla, east of San José. According to festival organizer Karolina Hernández, the new location is a much better fit and should help alleviate congestion concerns.

“This is a lot more comfortable,” Hernández says, “and will be easier to get in and out.”

Hernández expects a similar turnout – “hopefully more,” she says – to last year’s festival, which drew 7,000 attendees.

Headlining the festival are U.K.-based, Guyana-born producer Mad Professor, known among reggae and electronic aficionados as “the King of Dub,” and Algerian DJ Karim. A dozen local acts representing an eclectic mix of music and dance styles will also perform, and the concert’s organizers promise a “surprise” international guest. The entertainment will last 12 hours, organizers say.

The festival kicks off at 10 a.m. The first 1,000 people through the gates before 1 p.m. will receive a free CD featuring some of the festival’s acts.

For the first time, the festival has been recognized by the Culture Ministry as “of cultural interest.” Each year, the festival makes a point to promote ecological and ethnic awareness. According to Hernández, the festival’s theme, “Water World” reflects the organizers’ desire to advance environmental consciousness.

“We want to offer information to the public about the importance of conserving water,” Hernández says.

Tickets cost ¢11,000 ($20) at the door or ¢10,000 ($18) if purchased in advance at Vértigo music stores. Food and drinks, including vegetarian options, will be available throughout the festival, as well as a campground at a nearby lake.

The party will continue a week later at the first-ever Festival Mundoloco Playa in Playa Hermosa, on the central Pacific coast. Confirmed for the second show, which will start at 4 p.m. April 11 at the Terraza del Pacífico hotel, are Mad Professor and Madelaine, Techtónico, Santos y Zurdo and DJ Karim. Admission will cost ¢10,000.

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