rory bett | the great escape

Rory Bett is a local legend, having brought The Great Escape festival to Brighton in 2006 to celebrate new music. As we approach the festival’s twelfth year, Rory took some time out to talk to us about the city he calls home.

Where do you live in Brighton & Hove and what do you like about the area?

I’ve lived in Brighton for 18 years and loved our city from the moment we arrived. It’s perfectly balanced in every direction for the life my family and I wish to live. From the sea to the South Downs and all points East and West, there is every landscape and view you could wish for, and they change with each season. The music scene in Brighton is also one of the healthiest in the country, with so many venues offering a live music experience that inspires a great many local bands to greatness, Royal Blood being the latest. The diversity in our city is only getting deeper and richer and long may it continue; it feeds all aspects of our city’s cultural reservoir and makes for an exciting future for the creative arts and culture in general.


What are you most looking forward to about this year’s The Great Escape?

Walking to work is the first thing I really look forward to… We are a festival of discovery and I enjoy seeing our customers’ reactions when they realise they have stumbled on something new that affects them. It is magical to watch it happen and gives me and the team great pleasure. We are also celebrating the noble gig; in fact, with 750 gigs over three days, it’s something pretty special to see how the vibe and the audience’s reactions change in each and every gig, with the artist leading the way.

I’m also lucky to have the best team of people to work with in the business. We have worked for years and years on this show – it’s great to come together with them and a pleasure to see them at their best.

If you had to describe yourself in the style of a music review, what would you say?

Haha! “Rory seemed to have forgotten the fact he was promoting a new album and just played the hits. He seemed to be reaching for the guitar of Angus Young, the drums of Keith Moon, the sax of Pee Wee Ellis, the frontman of Sid Vicious and the voice of Dolly Parton… and came up short on the lot.”– 2 stars

Describe your perfect day in Brighton

I guess it’s the same as most people’s – family, good friends, good food, a good bottle of wine, some good music and a good laugh. Seems to make the world go round pretty well.


You can find out what we’ll be seeing at this year’s festival here or take a look at the full line-up and pick your favourites here.


17th – 19th May 2018