Shine Music Festival Aims to Make Live Music Accessible For Everyone

According to Shawn Satterfield, the founder of Shine Music Festival, “There is a magic that happens when the energy of music combines with the energy from the collective listeners.” However, the magic of live music should not only extend to able-bodied people. That is why his free, radically accessible live music event was created in Colorado. Taking place at the Levitt Pavilion this Sunday, August 8, the festival will provide a long-overdue space for all to feel welcome, and all to feel embraced as they are.

Shine is the first of its kind. Inspired by a 2018 viral video of a street busker playing his guitar for a little girl who happened to be blind and autistic, the effect of the music was evident on the child’s face. The creators of the festival recognized that joy and ran with it by creating a live music experience that combines comprehensive accessibility plans with adaptive technology. Together, this will create a space where people of all abilities can share the power of live music.

Shine Music Festival

Created by Shine Music Festival.

For over one billion people, or 15% of the world’s population, attending a live music event is almost impossible due to the lack of accessibility. However, the positive effects of live music are indisputable. While few venues exist with infrastructures that accommodate those with mobility issues, creators of Shine have seen this issue and taken it to the next level.

Full Body Sound will have their revolutionary technology that allows people to feel sound. Feel The Beat will have their bone-conduction dance floor which allows you to feel sound through vibrational energy. We will be painting pathways throughout the lawn that are color-coded according to grade steepness – showing the easiest route from point A to B.” said Satterfield.

Working with members of the neurodiverse community is also an important aspect of this festival.

“We have an entire NeuroDiverse area that will include the Autism Communities Sensory Bus. Braille on our concert t-shirts, ASL interpreters and amazing partners including Special Olympics, Easterseals, Davis Phinney Foundation and Rocky Mountain Human Services will join our more than 20 vendors to create a fun experience on our Backstage Blvd,” said Satterfield.

Communication is also an important aspect of making this festival accessible. Maps, schedules and day of event information have been provided in advance for guests to allow them to plan their day accordingly. With guests traveling from all over the country, this is essential.

This communication also gives guests the opportunities to check out the phenomenal acts and vendors that Shine is hosting. Vendors for the event include Art From Ashes, a program that inspires youth to facilitate health and hope through expression, Rehabilitative Rhythms, an innovative music-making and music therapy service and Special Olympics Colorado.

Created by AJ from Access Gallery.

The influential vendors that the festival hosts will add to the musical experience for festival-goers to enjoy throughout the day. The different musical acts that are performing not only appeal to the senses but also the soul. From bluegrass to rock music, not only will the event be accessible for everyone, but it will also have a genre for everyone as well.

“Honestly, [the musicians and bands] picked us. As musicians found out about Shine Music Festival, they reached out to us telling their stories of why this means something to them and asked to participate. We had 11 bands and wanted them all, so with the help of our sponsor, Colorado Staffing Solutions in conjunction with Hakuna Matata Enterprises, we were able to add a second stage. The Score, Shine Music Festival’s headliner, brings the large show energy experience and a great addition, making the music as inclusive as the crowd.” said Satterfield.
Breaking down the barriers that prevent people with disabilities from attending live music events is an important task. The numerous health and wellness benefits of live music are overabundant — calming anxieties, aiding communication by stimulating and encouraging speech, improving physical skills and helping people to express and experience a variety of emotions are just a few of the many ways live music is beneficial according to Bethesda. Because of these benefits, everyone, disabled or not, can look forward to knowing that Shine Music Festival is taking place this year.
Check out the full Shine Music Festival lineup below:

August 8, 2021

11:30 a.m.: Desacore at Main Stage.

12 p.m.: The Orcastrator at Main Stage.

1 p.m.: Show Start: Art From Ashes at Main Stage.

1:15 p.m.: Photon at Main Stage.

1:45 p.m.: Bottlerocket Hurrican at Hakuna Matata Stage.

2:15 p.m.: El Javi at Main Stage.

3 p.m.: Damon Wood Band at Hakuna Matata Stage.

3:30 p.m.: Ryan Chrys & The Rough Cuts at Main Stage. 

4:15 p.m.: Graham Good & The Painters at Hakuna Matata Stage.

5 p.m.: Neal Evans Fro Down at Main Stage.

5:45 p.m.: Float Like A Buffalo at Hakuna Matata Stage.

6:15 p.m.: The Score at Main Stage. 

Shine Music Festival takes place on Sunday, August 8 located at Levitt Pavilion at Denver 1380 W. Florida Ave, Denver, Co. Early Access is at 11:30 a.m. Tickets are limited but are available here.