St Andrews loves its traditional balls and formal events. As a student body, we’re lucky enough to enjoy quite the buzzing social calendar peppered with some decidedly glamorous gatherings. Head of Press Annie Newman explains that Under Canvas offers a very different experience, and one that we don’t really see much of here. After making a name for itself last year as St Andrews’ one and only music festival, students know that they can expect a more toned down atmosphere. “It’s a festival, not a ball,” she continues. (Read: You don’t have to wear heels). “All pressure’s off. The tone is going to be a lot more chilled out, and you can expect a night with great music and great people.”

While the general set-up will remain fairly similar to last year’s with the main tent in St Mary’s, there are a couple exciting new additions. There will be a STAR Radio tent where guests can be interviewed if they so chose. ST.ART will be back with a photo and face paint stand, only this year they’ll be painting just your face instead of your whole self. So don’t worry about getting covered in color and ruining your clothes! Speaking of which, Annie recommends that guests simply come in something comfortable. The dress code is pretty open-ended, which is a refreshing departure from the more formal events on the St Andrews calendar. Annie adds that there are also rumors flying around about an above ground ball-pen as well as a ping-pong table, which I’m inappropriately excited about. If anybody wants to challenge me to a ping-pong tournament, please let me know. There will also be an outdoor seating area if you’d like to take a quick break, but by the looks of this musical lineup, you won’t want to.

The music is really what makes Under Canvas. Starting at 8:00, there are quite a few acts, which will give the night some nice changes of pace. St Andrews student Ellie Mason is a member of the opening band, Lights on the Mountain, so be sure to get there on time. You can also look forward to sets by Moodroom, Anushka, Ossie, and XXXY. It’s easy to see why Under Canvas has been so popular with music lovers!

However, something that I didn’t realize is that Under Canvas is first and foremost a charity event. Even several years ago, when Under Canvas was the Masquerade Ball, the purpose of the night has always been to fundraise for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust. Annie explains that the cause is a very personal one for the committee members, and therefore it has always been the absolute focus of the event. So while you’re enjoying the incredible music, having your face painted, or enjoying the 2 complementary drinks that came with your ticket, remember the fantastic cause at the heart of one of St Andrews’ most imaginative events.

If you can’t wait for Saturday, head to the Brew Pub to try the last of their Under Canvas Beer!