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Review: The Zoo Project at Benimussa Park, 22nd August

Mid-season animalistic trip to Benimussa Park.

On the outskirts of San Antonio, as you pass through the gates into Benimussa Park on a Saturday, animals await you. Upon closer inspection, however, these untamed creatures are actually humans. All thanks to The Zoo Project taking over the park since this side of the millennia, offering a unique, festival like setting to get a taste of the underground, outdoors.

Within, the Seal Pit is littered with people top to bottom as Philipp plays a hard-edged remix of Let's Prance from Radio Slave & Thomas Gandey. Enthralling performance art is ahead of us at the stage as two contortionists in tiger-striped morphsuits duelled. At the Treehouse sparks are flying, as Dana Ruh mixes up a skipping percussive storm, including Guy Gerber's hot off the press remix of Monkey Safari - Walls, taking it more tribal towards the end. Around the enclosures the wild breed of ravers loose in the vicinity are glittered and painted up with animal markings.

The line-up features names many of Zoo's clientele have little clue about, a booking policy that invites a musical education for the crowd. The open-air can be embraced, although near the front of the treehouse it is definitely getting sweaty under upside-down umbrellas as everyone goes bananas to invigorating house and techno cuts in Spencer Parker’s lively set. Fittingly, he later plops a banana on his head as he heads off of an 80s tangent with Blackbox's Ride on Time and Toto's Africa.

Back at the Seal Pit, Holland's very own Cinnaman is serving up a set of tunes almost as lethal as having a spoon of the spice his alias resembles. For unknown reasons, dancing on a level is lots of fun, the multiple tiers at the replica dolphinarium therefore making Floorplan's beastly re-plant of Never Grow Old all the more enjoyable. To go along with those endorphins released dancing, the Mandala Garden ensures you’re feeling as zen as possible with healing vibrations away from the speakers from some friendly enlightened ones. You can even get a tarot reading and they'll probably inform you you're about to have a wicked time, leaving the place with your new pack.

WORDS | Emma Gillett PHOTOGRAPHY | James Chapman


Full summer listings for The Zoo Project

Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project Opening Party

Sun 06 May
Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 13 May
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 20 May
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 27 May
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 03 Jun
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 10 Jun
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 17 Jun
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 24 Jun
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 01 Jul
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 08 Jul
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 15 Jul
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 22 Jul
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 29 Jul
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 05 Aug
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 12 Aug
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 19 Aug
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 26 Aug
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 02 Sep
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sat 08 Sep
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 16 Sep
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sat 22 Sep
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project

Sun 30 Sep
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Benimussa Park

The Zoo Project Closing Party

Sun 07 Oct
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