Insomniac Events and the pandemic [Magazine Featured]
Since the pandemic began to fully take hold at the start of 2020, American events company Insomniac, fronted by Pasquale Rotella, wasted no time in getting down to business to see what they could do to ensure that fans and attendees of their events – that were getting cancelled – were staying entertained, and happy. The company was hit extremely hard during the COVID-19 pandemic, as they host many major festivals and artist tours all throughout the year, but they turned their misfortune into innovation, and had a great year.
The first thing they did was turn to livestreaming as a universal way of gathering fans from all across the world, and it meant that some could experience their first Insomniac event – albeit, an online event – and join in for free. What stood out about their livestream experience was how much they made it into a spectacular event, where viewers could forget that it was online and lose themselves into the world that they had built. Their virtual Rave-a-Thon events set out to entertain fans during the dates when their events would’ve taken place as normal, so that fans were not sad about having to miss out, but could watch something to take their mind off everything, as well as watch their favourite DJs play.
Events such as the EDC Las Vegas Virtual Rave-a-Thon and Beyond Wonderland at The Gorge Virtual Rave-a-Thon were treated like any of Insomniac’s festivals. Announcing a lineup featuring DJs who were originally billed to play at the in-person events, they decorated a studio space to go along with a theme, fully immersing viewers and the DJs themselves into this new world. As well as the theme, they went big on lighting and creating a stage, making the best of what they had. In addition, this was all done in a Covid-safe environment, where social distancing rules were implemented as well as all DJs wearing gloves and face masks to reduce the spread of bacteria.