Live shows aren’t even happening this year, but the world’s biggest dance music festival, Tomorrowland, is still vying to be the most massive event of the season.
Happening this weekend (July 25-26), the Tomorrowland Around the World livestream is hosting a lineup including Martin Garrix, Steve Aoki, David Guetta, Nervo, Afrojack, festival residents Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Oliver Heldens and other dance music titans performing from a virtual fantasyland. Katy Perry will also be making a special appearance.
In a press conference held earlier today (July 22), Perry joined Aoki, the Nervo sisters, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, festival founder Michiel Beers and Guetta (who Zoomed in from a boat in France, naturally), to share her thoughts on the event.
“Well, it’s very cool, and I always want to be cool,” the pregnant pop star joked of her decision to play the event. “But really truly, I thought it was so innovative of a festival to say ‘Okay, know what? F–k it. We’re just going to pivot, and we’re going to bring something really technically advanced and difficult, but we’re going to create something beautiful out of this mess. So I really admire and respect how the festival went and did it.
“And basically some of my other pop friends like miss Dua [Lipa] and so forth have done the festival,” Perry continued, “so I felt really in sync with the roster of old and am happy to be invited and included in this new way of doing it.
Perry also said that she tailored her festival set list for the Tomorrowland crowd, promising to play EDM-ified versions of her recently released songs “Smile “and “Daisies” and that she’ll be also “leaning in” to the festival’s fashion with her orange hair
Participating artists recorded their sets in front of green screens in studios set up in Belgium, São Paulo and Los Angeles, with the festival sharing a sneak preview of Martin Garrix’s truly bananas looking performance on Instagram earlier today. See renderings of four of the eight festival stages, along with this weekend’s set times, below.
“It doesn’t matter that it was only ten people,” Guetta said of recording his set in the studio with the festival team. “I was using them to imagine the 100,000 people of Tomorrowland.”
Guetta went on to say that the livestream is “the only festival that has the guts to not only try a new creative model in terms of artistry, but also an economic model, because we have no idea how it’s going to to, but I respect that you’re willing to take the risk and doing something innovative and that’s how we created that scene altogether, by doing things that have never been done before.”
Single day passes for the event are $13, with two-day pass going for $22. The two-day price including a week of video-on-demand content from the event. The event will broadcast from 9 a.m – 7 p.m ET, with “time-zone-friendly” options for people tuning in from North or South American and Asia.
Festival programming also includes ‘inspiration sessions” featuring talks from environmentalists, explorers and stars including Will.i.am and Shaquille O’Neil, who had a major viral moment at Tomorrowland 2019.