From A Fan’s Perspective: Budweiser Made in America Festival 2013

Welcome to the Budweiser Made in America Festival!
Welcome to the Budweiser Made in America Festival!

The city of Philadelphia hosted the second annual Budweiser Made in America Festival this past Labor Day weekend (August 31 – Sept 1). The festival took place in the city’s center along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and hosted acts on four stages, Skate Park, Freedom, Liberty, and Rocky.

The fellas of Rudimental jamming out
The fellas of Rudimental jamming out

This year’s festival hosted a very eclectic group of acts from both the US and Europe, including the likes of Beyonce, A$AP Rocky, Black Hippy, Emeli Sande and AlunaGeorge. I was really excited to see Rudimental (photo above), as they have been one of my favorite UK acts on the rise.

The massive crowd near the Liberty Stage for 2 Chainz
The massive crowd near the Liberty Stage for 2 Chainz

This was my first time attending the fest, so I had pretty high expectations given the fact that it is spearheaded by none other than Jay Z. That was reflected in the line-up, but it was evident that the organizers were not prepared for such an intense turnout. In general, I am used to crowds, but the crowds at this year’s Made in America were unbearable at times. Given the intense humidity and warm weather, tensions rose high among some festival goers, and altercations ensued. Despite this, the performances were still on point.

Beyonce opening her set on the big screen
Beyonce opening her set on the big screen

Beyonce closed night one with a slightly condensed version of her Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, full of vocal acrobatics and the dancing we best know her for. Her performance was by far one of my favorites; I sang along to all octave progressions in “Love on Top” and didn’t skip a note! You could not tell me that I wasn’t on stage as one of her back up singers, ha!

A picture perfect day for a festival
A picture perfect day for a festival

The weekend in itself also showcases the architectural beauty of Philadelphia as a city to us NYC girls. We walked to the site each day, and were able to take in the sights around us, including many historical buildings and tourist attractions.

Close up of Solange and her keyboard player
Close up of Solange and her keyboard player

The most fun by far at a performance was at Solange’s set. The crowd was fun-loving and spirited. The younger Knowles went through tracks from her EP True, along with some oldies but goodies, including “Sandcastle Disco” and “T.O.N.Y”. So much fun, shimmying and wiggling.

Click through the gallery for more photos from the festival!

*All photos by Andrea K. Castillo

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