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126,000 people celebrate Sónar’s 25th anniversary

There were celebrations in Barcelona over the weekend as Sónar 2018 celebrated the festival’s 25th anniversary with its biggest, most international event to date. Over 126,000 guests were welcomed to the event over the weekend, with nearly half of those being international visitors.

Split into Sónar by Day and Sónar by Night, guests were treated to performances from acts such as Thom Yorke, LCD Soundsystem and Gorillaz, who played their first ever performance at the festival. Also appearing in the line-up alongside the more high-profile performers were a number of emerging local and national acts. Altogether, 150 acts performed over 10 stages during the three day event.

Organisers were planning for an impressive weekend to mark 25 years in the business. In the run up to the festival, Sónar released a series of playlists and mixes to celebrate its birthday.

“Over 126,000 guests were welcomed to the event over the weekend, with nearly half of those being international visitors.”

Outside of the musical success, the Sónar+D congress for creativity and technology also celebrated its most accomplished year ever. Almost 6,000 professionals from 3,300 companies took to the event to watch the 27 conferences and 21 workshops scheduled for the weekend. One of the topics touched on over the weekend included the use of artificial intelligence and wearable technology and how it can enhance a listener’s musical experience.

Sónar 2018, promoted by Advanced Music, was a far reaching event. Beyond the stages and the conferences, festival-goers could experience the exhibition “NO Flyers NO Posters” – a celebration of their 25-year history. Additional to this, the Maker Faire event showcased the activities of both Sónar and Sónar+D to the general public.

Following the huge successes of 2018, organisers are already planning next year’s event, though with a slight, one-off change of scheduling. Next years Sónar will take place one month later than usual and tickets are on sale today.

 


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All-time high attendance for Sónar 24

More than 123,000 people attended the 24th Sónar – the most successful year in the Barcelona festival’s history.

Some 61,000 attended Sónar 2017’s daytime programme (Sónar by Day), which featured music over five stages as part of the festival proper – and 157 panels, demonstrations and installations for tech conference Sónar+D – at the the Fira Montjuïc exhibition centre in Barcelona city centre.

A thousand more, meanwhile, attended Sónar by Night – held at on 16 and 17 June at Fira Gran Via, just outside central Barcelona – to see performances by DJ Shadow, Justice, Soulwax, Moderat, Anderson .Paak and other heavy hitters from the electronic music world.

Attendees for both were divided almost equally between Spaniards and foreigners, with 48% domestic festivalgoers and 52% international.

The next Sónar events are Buenos Aires (26 November), Bogota (2 December), Reykjavik (16–17 March), Hong Kong (17 March) and Istanbul (30–31 March). Sigur Rós will headline both the Buenos Aires and Bogota events.

 


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Sónar+D reveals 2017 agenda

Sónar+D, the tech conference forming part of Barcelona electronic music festival Sónar, has announced its programme for 2017.

The conference will this year bring together 180 speakers and 5,000 delegates from 60 countries from to discuss “the future of design, music and creative technologies”. New for 2017 are a networking day on the 14th; Sonar360º, a space dedicated to immersive audiovisual “fulldome” installations; and sessions on virtual reality, artificial intelligence, start-ups, digital music distribution and more.

Sónar+D 2017 runs from 14 to 17 June.

Justice, Anderson .Paak, Eric Prydz, De La Soul, Soulwax, Moderat, DJ Shadow, Nina Kraviz and Giggs are among the performers at this year’s Sónar festival. Sónar announced last month it will return to Asia for the first time since 2013 with events in Istanbul and Hong Kong.

 


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Brian Eno to keynote Sónar 2016 conference

Sónar+D, Sónar festival’s tech- and digital culture-focused conference programme, will this year feature over 50 speakers, 100 exhibiting companies and 4,500 delegates from across the world.

Brian Eno, described by Sónar as “one of the most important thinkers of our time, at the intersection between technology, art, science and culture”, will give the keynote lecture, and Jean-Michel Jarre, Richie Hawtin, Kode 9, Lawrence Lek, Alva Noto and Bytone will all speak on the visual influences behind their live shows.

Spotify, the BBC, Google Data Arts and Microsoft’s Kate Crawford will discuss the changing face of the music business in the digital era, while representatives from Cern and the ALMA observatory will tackle how scientific research institutions can serve as an “engine for innovation” for musicians and artists. Also speaking will be Minecraft director of operations Bu Vui and British art collective and Massive Attack collaborator United Visual Artists.

View the full Sónar+D programme at the conference’s website.

Performing at the Sónar music festival are Jean-Michel Jarre, New Order, Anohni, Skepta, John Grant, James Blake, Roots Manuva, Flume and Stormzy.