The 2009 edition of Los Angeles electronic music proponent Insomniac’s Electric Daisy Carnival seriously stretched – if not annihilated – attendance records for U.S. music festivals. And if this year’s lineup – which includes Moby, Deadmau5 and international über DJ Sasha – is any indication, it’s about to happen again.
Electric Daisy returns to L.A.’s Memorial Coliseum & Exposition Park June 25-26, with a roster stuffed to bursting with the who’s who of the dance world, including Armand Van Helden, Armin Van Buuren, Groove Armada, MSTRKRFT, Fedde Le Grand, Benny Benassi, Laidback Luke, Swedish House Mafia, Wolfgang Gartner, Boyz Noize, Infected Mushroom and Kaskade.
Insomniac mastermind Pasquale Rotella attributed the boost in numbers last year – 45,000 on Friday and an astounding 90,000 on Saturday – to adding an extra day.
“It’s built steadily over the years, but what made it jump last year was having two days,” Rotella told Pollstar. “The year before, we only had one day.
“The attendance went up on one day – if you just took Saturday on its own – it went up 20,000 people. Which is a lot, but there are festivals that will get 15,000 – 20,000 people less from year to year when things like lineups change.”
So what prompted the change to two days?
“There were a few reasons we expanded it,” the veteran promoter explained. “Wanting to get more talent on board was one. Plus we put a lot of attention into detail with regard to the production of our shows. To build it and then to tear it right down – it’s sad to me.
“We get so excited, because we work all year for this show. We build it, it’s up for 12 hours and then we tear it down. There’s more that we want to do, but it’s not worth it for such a short time.
“Having a show up for two days means we can do more with the production. So we can afford more. Plus it makes it more of a destination for travelers, where a one-day event isn’t as appealing for someone who’s from out of town. Because they’ve still got to get a hotel and they still have to put out a decent amount of money for flights and things like that. With two days, you get your money’s worth. We want to be able to satisfy on that end as well.”
And it’s not just fans that are taking notice of Electric Daisy, which Rotella started in 1996. The event has gained such a reputation, artists are lining up to get in on the action.
“We get requests,” he said. “I’ve already got people for next year. I can’t say who, but I’ve go top notch guys committed for next year – I didn’t even get a chance to inquire. And that wasn’t the case say, five years ago. So that’s a nice perk of being on the level that we’re at with the festival.”
Actually, Rotella is being kind of modest about his success; the annual event has gotten so popular, additional Electric Daisies began popping up outside of L.A. a few years ago.
“This is our third year for Denver and our second year in Puerto Rico,” he explained. “We did Austin many years ago in like 1999 and had 15,000 people out there. This will be our first year back and we’re going to Dallas, where we’re doing a street closure downtown near a club that’s co-promoting the event with us.”
One-day and two-day tickets for Electric Daisy Carnival in Los Angeles are available at Insomniac.com and ElectricDaisyCarnival.com, along with updates to the roster. VIP packages will be unveiled in the coming weeks.