When it was announced that Borgore would not appear at Stereo Live, I was sure that turnout would be pretty sparse. Stereo Live, apparently, was afraid of this same conclusion: Ticket prices plummeted and landed on “free.”
As I approached the venue, it looked as though the offering had done the trick. Hardly after 10 p.m., a line was already forming at the entrance. Girls pranced past me in their fishnets while their male friends followed dutifully behind, absorbed in their phone screens. The staff took careful time to pat everyone down and check IDs, gradually working their way through a crowd that seemed completely undeterred by the headliner’s absence.
Though the mood appeared optimistic, I was curious if the large numbers were just a result of the free admission (with RSVP email confirmation). Andrew, 23, seemed entirely unaffected in spite of planning to see Borgore. “I mean I liked the whole line-up, so it was fine that he wasn’t going to show.” His friend Yenis, 28, agreed, stating that they come to Stereo Live “every weekend, or else I feel like I’ve done nothing with my life.”
It was apparent many other regulars to the venue decided to stop by, including Juan, 23, who attends “about every other week.” In response to Borgore’s absence he just shrugged saying, “I like EDM and dance music, so I really just came to have fun.”
Once inside the main doors sponsor Rockstar Energy Drink was offering free drinks and the dance floor was crowded. Completely engrossed with the music, people bobbed and danced in the ever-changing light schemes. Apparel ranged from casual to full out rave gear, going so far as for individuals to sport various fur-covered articles. In the back lounge area several groups sipped on drinks while the dance music blared. Beverages could be purchased at any of the five bars open, and a couple of vendors sold hats and small accessories. The patio, clouded heavily with cigarette smoke, was clearly a designated area to socialize.
Peta2, another sponsor of Safe in Sound, had a small booth set up that offered free stickers and pamphlets on veganism. When asked about their involvement with the festival, Peta2’s representative, Caroline, lit up, “These events are all about love, so we get a lot of caring and loving people interested in Peta2.”
As people maneuvered through the outdoor patio it was easy to see they were happy to be there, enjoying a shared love of dance music and the company of friends. Luckily Borgore wasn’t present to see the lack of disappointment in his absence.