Katy Perry and David Guetta on what to expect from the virtual festival

Emilee Geist

EPA
EPA

Katy Perry, David Guetta, and Steve Aoki shared a first look at this year’s Tomorrowland virtual festival.

The performers joined the festival’s co-founder Michael Beers and moderator Sean Dhondt in an online press conference with Variety to talk about what fans can expect from Tomorrowland’s 2020 edition.

The iconic electronic dance music (EDM) festival, which normally takes place in Boom, Belgium, is moving online this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Hoping to emulate previous years, the virtual festival will combine 3D visuals with innovative game design. Green screen technology will be used to make the event feel as real as possible for the audience.

Each act will record their set at various green screen studios across the world before digital technology is used to mimic the brilliant fireworks and laser shows that Tomorrowland is famous for.

Aoki, the two-time Grammy-nominated DJ, said of the recording experience, “Before I started recording my set, they showed me some of the renderings of what the crowd looks like, and there’s camera pan shots of this digital crowd full of energy.”

He continued, “We all need someone to communicate to, someone to look at, someone to feel the energy off of. So if you can create that environment, it changes the game for artists.”

Perry’s set, which will see the singer’s most popular songs take on an EDM twist, was recorded together with her band in a studio.

Guetta is optimistic that the virtual experience will be able to live up to the real thing. “I think what is really incredible with Tomorrowland is that since day one they took us in a fantasy world.

“So it’s actually not so crazy to do a virtual Tomorrowland because it was always kind of virtual. We always created our own world the way we were dreaming it, so this makes total sense to me.”

Other artists on the 2020 lineup include Martin Garrix, Afrojack, Tiësto, Dimitri Vegas and Nervo.

Tomorrowland Around the World is scheduled on its website for 25 and 26 July. Tickets for the virtual festival are available from €12.50 (£11.38).

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