Belgium’s Tomorrowland expanded to new heights in 2019, announcing the year prior that not only would fans be treated to two weekends in summer, but that now a winter edition would unfold in March. The inaugural Tomorrowland Winter officially touched down on the Alpe D’Huez and immediately became a hit—even after inclement weather led to a bumpy start and evacuations at first. By Summer, plans were fully in motion for the festival’s return, and now, the first of its lineup has officially been unveiled.
House and techno dominate the first phase, with notable talents like Charlotte de Witte, Artbat, Joris Voorn, Kölsch, Patrice Baumel, Stephan Bodzin, Paul Kalkbrenner, and more making their way onto the bill. At a closer glance, it seems some of the festival’s headlining talent has also been revealed in Martin Garrix and Armin van Buuren. Mike P.U.S.H. and Vini Vici are among the first trance acts to be announced, while the raucous Timmy Trumpet is primed to create another stunt whilst taking the Tomorrowland Winter decks.
For a landmark festival with influence as ubiquitous as Tomorrowland, its 15th anniversary inevitably brought an equally remarkable number of commemorations—from a special 60-piece “Symphony of Unity” opening performance to a revitalized “Book of Wisdom” main stage to Eric Prydz‘s Holosphere debut. With the milestone celebration also came the myriad of diverse talent; whether mainstream or underground, icons or rising acts, artists across all corners of the electronic music world showed their faces at Tomorrowland including Laidback Luke‘s 70-year old alter-ego.
Laidback Luke revealed on social media that he secretly played twice at the Belgium festival—once as himself and once under the guise of an old man. The Dutch producer worked in collaboration with Tomorrowland to undergo a full transformation complete with hair, makeup, and special effects in order to play the part. As the oldie, Laidback Luke proceeded to take over the decks at Tomorrowland’s smallest stage, the legendary Rave Cave. Check out the behind-the-scenes process below.
Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike will debut their famed fall event, Garden of Madness in the United States on November 2. The international phenomenon, formerly known as Bringing The Madness, will touch down at the New York Expo Center for its inaugural iteration in the states. Produced by the team behind Boom, Belgium’s renowned Tomorrowland festival, Garden of Madness promises attendees a high-caliber live event experience with adrenaline-spiking dance action.
The November 2 date is Garden of Madness’ sole US showing of 2019: after its short New York stint, the series will cross the Atlantic, traveling abroad to Liverpool for a December 7 edition at the Steel Yard. The Garden of Madness run will conclude at the Sportpaleis Antwerp arena on December 20-21.
Garden of Madness holds a rich history in the context of Tomorrowland, where Dimitri Vegas and Like Mikes’ concept has been a cornerstone of Tomorrowland programming since 2014. The conceptual event series has also become a regular component of Ushuaïa Ibiza’s annual calendar as well. The White Isle hotspot has consistently welcomed Garden of Madness back for residencies for three respective seasons. Interested in attending? Visit Garden of Madness’ official website for more information.
Although it only saw one performance at the first weekend of Tomorrowland, Eric Prydz‘s EPIC 6.0 holosphere was simply unreal. EPIC stands for “Eric Prydz In Concert,” and that’s exactly what that performance was: a concert.
A club night is not a concert. A DJ set on a giant stage is not a concert. A concert is equally visual and aural in that the audience’s eyes and ears should remain fixed on the stage out of a resolute and irrational fear of missing but a moment. With Prydz and his DJ equipment inside the sphere, almost completely out of sight, fans who were lucky enough to be in that one crowd received a performance that was purely audio-visual.
Unfortunately, part of the Freedom stage, which housed the sphere at Tomorrowland, sank after the first weekend, and the organizers were unable to reconstruct the stage in time for the following weekend. As such, the second holosphere run was cancelled.
Luckily for the rest of Prydz’ global fanbase, The Verge was able to take a behind-the-scenes look into the holosphere from conception to production. In the video below that is just shy of eight minutes, The Verge interviews the visual designers, the architects, the technicians, and of course, Prydz himself.
Festival-goers have the option of purchasing either a four- or seven-day package, which go on sale Sept. 21 and 14, respectively. Pre-registration opens Aug. 13. Purchase of a ticket includes accommodations and ski passes. Read how to order your package here, and pre-register here.
Tomorrowland attracted 400,000 attendees to its 2019 iteration, which celebrated its milestone 15th anniversary over the course of two weekends. However, the festivities did not come without accompanying criminal activity. On Aug. 1, Belgium news source VTM News reported that several Tomorrowland crew members have admitted to dealing drugs at the festival. Anonymous witnesses that spoke to VTM News claim that some individuals took jobs specifically for the purpose of selling drugs. The claims have been cross-checked and substantiated by other festival employees.
Although security checks for the popular festival remained strict for regular event attendees, those for festival staff were comparatively looser—allowing many staffers to take advantage and smuggle in illicit substances.
Last month, the Boom festival detained and issued fines for 460 Tomorrowland attendees for drug use or possession. An additional 61 drug dealers were caught as well.
Tomorrowland has maintained the integrity of their security checks for festival staff. A representative stated, “We are convinced that this misplaced behavior of some crew members is very exceptional.”
Tiësto has teamed up with Colombian producer MOSKA for a new lively new tune, “Acordeão.” MOSKA is the first Latin American producer to sign with Tiësto’s label, Musical Freedom. It’s also his second collaboration with Tiësto, following their remix of Tiësto’s original track, “Century,” featuring Calvin Harris years ago.
“Acordeão” enlists a famous Colombian sample and composition, “Fiesta En Corraleja,” with full support from the original composer, Ruben Dario Salcedo Ruiz. The track’s Latin flair is effervescent and keeps the listener wanting to dance until the very end. Tiësto debuted the release during his set at Tomorrowland in July.
The release is a part of Tiësto’s TOGETHER project, which features a medley of up-and-coming artists with whom Tiësto has been working and helping to develop over the past few years in his continued efforts to discover and mentor emerging talent.
The 2019 iteration of Belgium’s world-renowned Tomorrowland has come and gone. One notable act that was all-too-perceptibly missing from this year’s 15th anniversary lineup was Swedish House Mafia. The Stockholm trio were rumored to be closing the main stage for Weekend 2, after Martin Garrix was confirmed as the closing act on the STMPD Records stage for the first weekend only, leaving the following weekend’s slot up for grabs. But when Swedish House did not end up performing, many were not shy about expressing their disappointment.
Fans fortunately did get a full set from Swedish House member, Axwell, who played an hour-and-15-minute set on his label-branded stage, Axtone. Fans audibly hungered for the performance; and Axwell delivered. The set includes a forthcoming Swedish House Mafia release around the 12-and-a-half minute mark, alongside the long list of Axwell originals. Stream the full set below.
The Antwerp public prosecutor’s office has released a report summarizing the criminal activity that transpired at Tomorrowland 2019, which attracted 400,000 attendees to its Boom, Belgium location. Officials arrested nine individuals for public intoxication, five for being a public nuisance, and one for attempted rape, according to the report. Sixty-six people were arrested for attempting to enter the festival without a ticket.
Police apprehended 460 attendees for drug use/possession and issued fines based on the grade of the illicit substance: “soft drugs” and “hard drugs” elicited fines of 75 and 150 Euros, respectively. Officials also confiscated these festival goers’ wristbands and escorted them offsite. Between Tomorrowland’s two consecutive weekends of production, authorities seized a total of 2,510 ecstasy pills, 25 grams of cannabis, 135 speed pills, 50 doses of LSD, 57 milliliters of GHB, 30 grams of MDMA, 15 ounces of cocaine, and 14 ounces of ketamine, among other real and synthetic drugs.
Tomorrowland Weekend Two was nothing short of remarkable, closing out their 2019 installment with some ground-breaking highlights. Attendees saw a revamp of the 2012 Book Of Wisdom theme on the main stage, trance-god Armin van Buuren performed two sets on two different stages, including his 15-year tributary performance, Nicky Romero honored his longtime friend, Avicii, and more.
For those who weren’t able to experience the event’s 15th anniversary, Dancing Astronaut has compiled some of the key performances throughout the second weekend’s entirety, including sets from DJ Snake, The Chainsmokers, Martin Solveig, and Laidback Luke. Stream the full live sets below and check out the Weekend One recap here.