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Barbados to host first electronic music fest

Organizer of the forthcoming Vujaday Festival, Ryan Kruger.
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The music scene on the isle of the flying fish is just getting more explosive!

The electronic music craze is on the rise in the Caribbean and the island nation of Barbados will be celebrating that shift in a huge way. The country will be the location of the weeklong Vujaday Music Festival next April — it is the first festival dedicated to house and techno music. The event is planning to bring some of the biggest house and techno music deejays to Barbados, which turns out is the ideal place for high-energy music based on the rise of it there, said the organizer of the festival.

“Compared with where a number of the other islands are right now, I’d say that Barbados is much more in tune with the global electronic movement and having events like Vujaday will only accelerate this growth,” said Ryan Kruger.

Calypso, jazz and soca are a few of the most commonly listened to genres on the island and are still the top music sounds of choice, but the country has been making room for electronic music for a while and a respective place for it, added Kruger.

“While it’s certainly not the dominant sound of the island, I would say it’s growing in popularity with both locals and tourists,” he said. “There has been a local scene for many years but it catered mainly to an eager but relatively small local fan base but what we have seen globally is that there has been a general shift towards destination style electronic music events like ours driven by a maturing fanbase.”

During a visit to the island earlier this year, Kruger met with tourism officials about making it the location for the music fest, citing the existing base and beautiful scenery as the perfect locale for it. He added that many locals have long pushed for the rise of the genre there.

“I’ve had the honor of meeting some very passionate local promoters, producers and deejays in my travels there, and I know they have been working hard for a number of years to cultivate a scene,” he said.

And next spring that scene finally gets a bigger spotlight when the Vujaday Music Festival arrives on April 4–8. The five-day festival is set to take place at various locations throughout Barbados and organizers will bring many electronic music artists and spinmasters to what can be a great event.

Organizers have been working on creating a festival for decades now and with locations already set, the island was the best location for it.

“Once we visited Barbados in early 2017 we knew we had found the perfect location,” he said. “We are now eagerly anticipating launching sales as soon as mid August.”

“Each event will be memorable for its stunning decor and great sound. Of course there will be great food and beverage offerings and we will work with local cultural groups to add some island flair. Outside the events themselves we will encourage our travellers to partake in the many entertainment and tourist options the island has to offer but we are 100 percent focused on creating great parties.”

Reach reporter Alexandra Simon at (718) 260–8310 or e-mail her at asimon@cnglocal.com.
Updated 4:54 pm, August 3, 2017
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