The first Pyramid Stage was constructed by Bill Harkin and his crew in 1971 out of scaffolding, expanded metal and plastic sheeting. The structure was built close to the Glastonbury Abbey/Stonehenge ley line and over the site of a blind spring. Many believe that the pyramid shape is a very powerful structure, the apex of which draws energy up and transmits it still further while the energy from the stars and sun are attracted to it and drawn down. Those that saw the original Pyramid at night likened it to a diamond transmitting almost tangible energy as people danced on the stage.
In 1981 a permanent structure doubling as a cowshed and animal foodstore during the winter months was built on the same site using redundant telegraph poles and surplus box section iron sheets form the Ministry of Defence. This Pyramid grew to symbolise the magic of Glastonbury Festival before it famously burned down in 1994, shortly before the Festival.
In 2000 the phoenix rose from the ashes and a glittering 100ft steel structure was erected with a massive footprint of 40m x 40m - four times larger than its previous incarnation. Four kilometres of steel tubing, weighing over 40 tonnes were used in the build, and all materials and processes used passed a Greenpeace environmental audit. This current structure was designed and built by Pilton villager Bill Burroughs based on the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. It is the most instantly recognised festival stage in the world.
Performers of the Pyramid Stage
This is where you're going to see the highest profile acts on the bill. In reality, it's the acts that have cost us the most money and whose agents have been insistent that any stage other than Pyramid is out of the question. But what sort of music is played on the Pyramid? Well, it is truly eclectic with the only commonality linking many of the artists being that they are just the best in their field.
How else do you describe a stage that has hosted Radiohead, Oasis, Jay-Z, Franz Ferdinand, The Prodigy, Joan Baez, Pulp, Tom Jones, Neil Diamond, Johnny Cash, Dizzee Rascal, Paul Weller, Peter Gabriel, Van Morrisson, Sinead O'Conner, Bjork, PJ Harvey, English National Opera, REM, Coldplay, Robbie Williams, Willie Nelson, Lily Allen, Bruce Springsteen, Pet Shop Boys, Rolf Harris, Black Eyed Peas, Morrissey, Paul McCartney, Scissor Sisters, Tony Bennet, Roger Water's Pink Floyd, Kings of Leon, The Reverand Al Greene, Rod Stewart, Jimmy Cliff, David Bowie, White Stripes, Dame Shirley Bassey, Arctic Monkeys, The Who, Brian Wilson and many, many more.
In 2004 it hosted the largest European Championships television audience with over 75,000 people watching Portugal versus England on the Pyramid's video screens!
What you can guarantee is that there will be some exceptional performances by exceptional artists every year (although you'll be missing out on lots of amazing things if you park yourself in front of it for the whole weekend).