We’ve met with the founders of Brussels Electronic Marathon – Brice Deloose & Andri Haflidason to chat about the new edition of the festival, taking place on 12, 13 and 14th October 2018.
Sounds as a cliché question, but it is really interesting – how did you guys come up with the idea to start Brussels Electronic Marathon? Was there nothing similar in Brussels before and was the idea born in Brussels or you “borrowed” it from some other city?
It all started with Make Brussels call to project. Though BEM did not finish in first place, the enthusiastic response that it received from all prospective partners made it clear that this project needed to happen, with or without the contest. There was clearly a thirst for a cultural initiative of this type, contributing to the image of a living, effervescent Brussels, both towards locals and towards the international community.
This festival is inspired by urban festivals like the Great Escape Festival in Brighton, Iceland Airwaves in Reykjavik, and the Brussels-based Brussels Jazz Marathon. It’s an initiative of the FTRSND collective, aimed at showcasing the diversity of the Brussels electronic music scene, both for established fans, and for those who are just curious.
Tell us a bit more about building the festival – how did you make this happen, who did you talk to first and were other people and institutions receptive to your idea?
We spent an afternoon calling everyone we knew from Brussels (label, club/bar owners, promoters, collectives) and this was it. From there the idea was out in the real world and people started to reach out to us as well.
BEM is already a Brussels brand, it’s growing into a very popular festival. What can the public expect this year?
As every year, great music, good vibes, a beating city during day and night with parties, concerts, exhibitions, audiovisual installations, workshops, talks, activities for kids, food and loads of smiles.
How is your project helping the local scene, are you collaborating with all the other “local electronic music stakeholders”?
BEM purpose is to show the diversity and richness of the local scene by programming only Belgian artists. It’s transforming the city in a showroom of what electronic music is about today in Belgium. We are working hand in hand with many venues as Bozar, Flagey, Botanique, Fuse, C12, Zodiak, Lavallée, Kanal Brut,… and many different musical collectives active in Brussels.
And for those who are “newbies” and like a bit of electronic music here and there – what are your tips, which shows do you recommend for this edition of BEM, especially for those who want to immerse and discover more about electronic music?
Definitely the audiovisual installations and sound experiences at Kanal Brut and Lavallée, and those are free. On Saturday, Fuse will welcome loads of different collectives under the “United” umbrella and on Sunday C12 will host a closing party, for the survivors. On Sunday afternoon you might want to enjoy some relaxed sounds with Initiate Reflexions and healing tones with H432, both happening at LaVallée.
For the end, tell us a few things you love about Brussels and at least one thing you would change in our city-region, if you were in the position! 🙂
Its diversity and crazy absurdity, so lovely! Stop waiting for things to happen and dare making them becoming reality.
To see the full programme of the BEM 2018 edition, check out the official website.