A Whole New Village Stage

Go behind the scenes of the build

The new Village Stage is bigger, badder and better than ever before.

Village Stage directors Eroca Colins and Jeremy Bridge give you the low down on the creative vision and build process behind the new design.

#1 Conceptualization

The first step was to gather ideas and concepts together, as well as storyboard what the Village really meant.  We wanted something new but also something that continued the unique feeling of the Village and brought the whole design concept together.  While the dome was a historical structure, the rest of the stage had evolved around it over many years.  We drew inspiration from fantasy, sci-fi, architecture and art from around the world. 

#2 Stage Survey

Step two was to hire surveyors to map the entirety of the Village with high precision.  While the overall area of the Village is one of the largest stages on the farm, it is specifically designed to feel immersive and cozy – the opposite of a big open field. It has lots of different types of areas each with a unique feel, dance floor, catwalks, forest, chill zones, benches, pathways, backstage, etc. The idea is that everyone can find their favorite type of space that they feel at home in.

#3 Engineering and Architecture

Once the conceptual design phase was complete, Studio9 Architecture and Effistruct were hired to perform a complete analysis of the design. This ensured the structure was engineered to exact standards and building codes. First engineering of the structure was performed in 2D and then a 3D model of the structure was created for construction drawings.

#4 Taking Down the Dome

Step four of the process was to finally take down the dome, one of the most iconic fixtures of Shambhala. We had all laughed and loved under the dome but it had lived a long life and it was time to turn to the next chapter. There were many tears and memories of all the great times we shared!

#5 Concrete & Steel

Every epic project needs a solid foundation and this one was monumental. The Village is built on a flood plain and each spring as the river rises, water makes its way across the dancefloor…sometimes more than 1’ deep. This meant the structure would need a large mass to form the base for the structure. Using more concrete than any other project at Shambhala, we excavated down to the riverbed and poured massive footings with more than 10 truckloads of concrete, totaling 375,000 pounds!

With the structure being so massive, wood alone would not be strong enough, so we built the skeleton using structural steel. The steel was prepared by a fabrication shop in Calgary and 36,000 pounds of steel was transported via tractor trailer to the festival site where it was assembled.

#6 Wood

Once the steel structure was complete, it was time to do the framing, sheeting and carpentry. It took 540 sheets of plywood, 200 hours of CNC cutting, truckloads of framing lumber and lots of carpentry magic!

#7 Art

No stage is complete without the artistic elements that bring it to life and give it a unique and special feeling. The Village has long had incredible talent on the art team and this time the artists have outdone themselves this time. Expect to see fantastic new elements blended with classic Village vibes on a scale never before seen at Shambhala.

Be the first to experience the new Village Stage

Don’t miss the opening ceremonies for the official opening of the new Village stage on Friday July 22 at 9pm. The Village Stage Directors have assembled a superstar team to curate a 30-minute epic custom-made immersive experience to commemorate this one-time special event. Be there and watch the new Village come alive.


Cirque de Nuit – Canada’s favorite performance group specializing in multi-dimensional performance experiences that entice and envelope the senses by merging the Circus arts with all elements of the performing arts, including choreography, theatrics. Literally expect an all-out circus.

Zain Effendi – Hollywood composer extraordinaire Zain has scored films such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Dark Night, and recently Star Wars. A long-time lover of the Village, Zain has graciously devoted his time to composing a completely custom soundtrack for the entire experience.

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