Birds In RowWilliam Lacalmontie

Birds In Row Withdraw From 2023 ‘Hellfest’ As Past Festival Intern Takes Legal Action Against ‘Hellfest’ Organizers For Alleged Sexual Harassment And Verbal Abuse


Birds In Row have taken a stance against the annual ‘Hellfest‘ festival in Clisson, France. Their actions emerge in response to allegations of moral and sexual harassment being leveled against the organizers of the festival by a past intern. The woman, who is now in her thirties, alleged she was made to dress in overtly sexual outfits and was repeatedly humiliated and insulted in public by her boss.

Per an article over at France Bleu, she relayed, “He called me his ‘sexy assistant’.  He clearly told me that I had to make people ‘hard-on’.” She also detailed an incident in which she thought she would be hit by her tutor at Hellfest Productions.

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The alleged incidents are said to have taken place back in 2017, with the woman in question having recently taken legal action against the festival’s organizers Hellfest Productions, rather than a specific individual. The alleged victim says she initially repressed the incidents, leading to this delay in legal action.

Per France Bleu, her attorney stated:

“Her wish by taking legal action is to make Hellfest Productions aware that there are actions that are not acceptable, which are illegal in the context of labor relations. She wants a conviction so that these practices- stop there, so that the mentalities within Hellfest Productions evolve.”

A first hearing in the case, which appears to be based on labor code violations in relation to the alleged harassment and abuse, took place on March 28th.

The festival’s organizers declined to comment on the situation when contacted for a statement by France Bleu. The allegations appear to have been the last straw for French hardcore punk outfit Birds In Row, who have opted to drop off of this year’s edition of the annual festival, offering:

“We will not play ‘Hellfest

For the last couple of years, the position of the festival on issues such as MusicToo movement or the place of extreme right-wing ideologies in our scenes hasn’t been clear enough. We thought our place was on stage, to spread the word and try to convince a crowd that we wouldn’t reach outside of this festival, that these issues needed to be addressed.

Now, with the recent allegations of sexual harassment within the festival staff, it is hard for us to candidly keep thinking that change will come that way. We realize the best way for us to express our discontent is to leave.”


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