Fantazia is a dance organisation based in the UK. Founded in 1991 by James Perkins, it was set up at a time when breakbeat hardcore was on the ascendent within the rave scene, having grown out of the Acid House movement.
Given the popularity and appeal of the music to a new generation of disaffected youth, the company grew quickly in line with the movement, holding six large raves in 1992.
As part of a general trend in the rave movement, not only were these events legal – but also particularly large. Fantazia’s rave at Castle Donington was the largest outdoor rave to be held in the UK – with no fewer than 25,000 people (police at the time estimated that an extra 3000 had gained entrance without tickets so the attendance figure was closer to 30,000).
Additionally, possibly following on from the Raindance events, Fantazia raves increasingly featured certain characteristics of theme parks and mainstream celebrations. For example, the Fantazia at Castle Donington included a stage dressed as a castle, a giant inflatable dragon and a large pyrotechnic/ firework display.
However, these things should be seen as peripheral, as the music (and possibly the use of ecstasy) constituted the core of each event and the movement in general. At the Castle Donington event alone, over 60 DJs & PAs played throughout the night.