Modern music lovers, mark your calendars: Detroit’s annual electronic music festival, this year titled “Movement,” is being held on Memorial Day weekend, May 29-31, and is prominently sponsored by the Ford Fiesta. The 36-hour celebration of sound will feature nearly 100 artists performing on five stages at one of Detroit’s hallmark outdoor urban venues, Hart Plaza. Last year, more than 83,000 people attended.
Electronic or “techno” music got its start in Detroit back in the early 1980s, but came to the forefront in 2000, when the city hosted its first official electronic music festival. Since that time, as techno-inspired music has flooded the recording industry, tens of thousands of fans from around the globe have swarmed to Detroit each May to hear techno’s hottest stars and latest up-and-coming talents perform in the place where it all got started.
According to festival director Jason Huvaere, “The economy of this music festival is incredible. The entrance fees are less than half of any other festival in the U.S. It is our responsibility and our pleasure to offer this huge experience for a lot less money. For the three-day festival, pre-sale prices are $60; at the gates, $70; and a special VIP pass is $150 for those 21 and over. VIPs get their own entrance gate, seating area, private restrooms and bar, plus other perks. Also, three downtown hotels are offering special festival packages – the Marriott, MGM Grand and Westin Book Cadillac.”
Gates open at noon each day and tickets are available here – https://secure1.gettickets.ca/SelectTickets.aspx?id=3b2e2879-597f-4499-8c1b-3c90cc7ab5dd&locale;=en-CA. Youth under the age of 12 years accompanied by an adult receive free admission. Headliners include Model 500 (Juan Atkins), Plastikman, Sinistarr, Ghostland Observatory, Kevin Saunderson’s Inner City, Derrick May, Booka Shade and Marco Carola.
Techno music has been described as electro, rock, funk, microhouse, minimal and contemporary dance music, but, according to Huvaere, “It’s simply music played on electronic instruments, and Detroit is the birthplace of it. This music is a very unique situation and was really born in this generation.”
The festival has become a pilgrimage of sorts for music lovers from all over the U.S. and the world. They come to dance, trance and sway to the likes of the festival’s closing and most acclaimed act, Model 500, led by Atkins, the “godfather of techno.”
The artist, who began experimenting with techno three decades ago and currently plays the keyboard/synthesizer, says people can expect a lot of energy and excitement from the concerts, especially his. After all, “It’s my hometown. Lots of friends, family … You’re in front of your people.”
Another Detroiter scheduled to perform, Jeremy Howard, aka Sinistarr, is developing a large international following, but is “beyond excited” about his first performance at this festival. He says his fans can look forward to a sound that’s “Detroit techno-influenced drum and bass. Deep, dark, soulful and robotic. I like to call what I do ‘space music’ or even ‘lunar.'”
Once thing’s for sure – Movement will definitely be an out-of-this-world experience.