Here’s everything you need to know about what Szentek actually is
It’s definitely not just a “rave in a barn for charity”
Underground music festival. St Andrews. Those two no-longer have to be separated by the 75 miles it takes to get to Glasgow. Szentek is the reason St Andrews is now cool and we wanted to find out more. Let's face it: Szentek sounds weird but is the lifeblood of the St Andrews' nightlife scene.
We sat down with the Szentek team to discuss what the event means for St Andrews and beyond.
It was founded in 2016
Szentek was started in 2016. Since then, it's grown into St Andrews' largest dance music event, bringing artists from all over the world to perform at their flagship event and clubnights.
They've cornered the market
Szentek told us, "St Andrews doesn't need to be all black tie balls and VIP events. Szentek allows students to experience exciting nightlife comparable to what you'd get on a regular basis in the likes of Manchester and Bristol – as well as acting as a platform for student artists and musicians to showcase their work to a large audience."
The name is Hungarian
The all important question was answered as follows: Szentek means 'Saint' in Hungarian. The event was originally inspired by the ruin bars of Budapest, an aesthetic that continues to characterise the decor of our events: we transform Kinkell into a wacky colourful playground, full of student made art, videography and sustainable junk installations." Despite not having an art school, Szentek seems to have found the best of the best in St Andrews' art and regularly uses them to create murals (that people probably try to steal).
Their aim is charity fundraising (and for everyone to dance until they drop)
The team told us that Szentek's aims revolve around music and charity. They said they hope the event will raise loads of money for "Variety Scotland, a fantastic children's charity based in Glasgow – whilst avoiding the extreme price tags of some of the other events in town. It's good knowing that your night of dancing is going to a good cause." They also hope that the event will promote underground music and prove that St Andrews has more in its repertoire than Dua Lipa and Mr Brightside.
Why do you think you have become the biggest club night in just three years?
Szentek puts it down to students changing their minds about what they actually want to do. They said "the last few years have seen a changing atmosphere in St Andrews nightlife – for a place with 'nothing on', Szentek has brought really respected artists to the town – such as this year's Optimo, Eclair Fifi, and previous guests Kornél Kovacs and Palms Trax. Szentek is more than just the music and a "rave in a barn for charity" – we have art, cinema rooms, immersive installations." Sounds like a Bristol students' wet dream to be honest.
You'll probably have a good time even if you don't like electro music
This year there are three stages of music playing everything from disco to drum and bass, so there's something for all tastes. Szentek hopes to be an "inclusive environment where anything goes, a night with no VIP thrills with everyone dancing however they like, wearing whatever they want – everyone is under one roof having the same experience."
Phones are not encouraged
The event organisers encourage people to focus less on selfies and more about finding their Szen. There are some good insta spots but, on the dance floor, keep it to a minimum. So put those phones away and, as Szentek tell us "it's a night to let go of all pretences and have a genuine good time in a fun loving atmosphere."
This year the line-up is female focused
This year has the largest line-up in the event's history, with female artists on each stage and eclectic, genre-blending DJs.
They're saving the planet
This year, Szentek will be sourcing lots of our art decor from recycled materials. How's that for feeling good about yourself.
Wavy garms should be worn at all times
There's actually no dress code, but the committee encourages guests to be fun, free and to thrift to their heart's content.
Committee members pay for tickets
In a shock St Andrews' move, Szentek committee members pay for their own tickets. This is part of believing in their brand, giving back to charity and making guests know that they believe ticket prices are worth it.
COVER CREDIT: Seher RoyChowdhury