MUTEK.ES Closes a Glowing 5th Anniversary
Strong artistic performances, packed daytime events, and a growing international audience affirm MUTEK.ES as an important platform for local and international digital creativity
March 14, 2014
After 4 days packed with performances and presentations by 28 artists from 9 different nationalities, and including 6 premieres, MUTEK.ES wrapped up its 5th anniversary edition in a festive birthday atmosphere.
Festival attendance jumped to over 6,000 visitors this year, with a notable increase of international festivalgoers visiting the festival this year. An impressive contingent of 109 national and international accredited journalists joined festivalgoers in discovering an edition that celebrated 5 years of building bridges between creativity and technology through MUTEK’s global network; the MUTEK.ES program carefully concocted a mix of artists and projects that have stood for their performances at MUTEK editions in Barcelona, in Mexico, or in Montreal over the last five years.
Musical highlights included a highly anticipated performance by Nils Frahm, whose virtuosic and emotive combination of piano and electronics captivated a practically sold-out audience at the magestic Tivoli Theater. Not content to simply show their appreciation with a rousing standing ovation, the audience created a mini-social media boom full of praise for the artist. Locals Kino Internacional & Inesfera opened the festival’s 5th edition at the Convent Sant Augusti with a tight set combining abstract IDM, breaks, and banging four-to-the-floor beats. Their performance, and the feeling of anticipation and celebration immediately noticed as festivalgoers lined-up outside on Wednesday night to join the opening celebrations, set the tone for the 3 days ahead. The spectacular stage design at Nitsa amplified the strong anniversary energy. Graced with standout performances by the incomparable Andy Stott, Marcel Dettmann with his uncompromising techno, and of course a special appearance of dub-techno wizard Deadbeat with Tikiman, the Nitsa also saw its LA/2 room host the MUTEK.ES closing concert presented by longtime partner RBMA, with memorable closing performances by RBMA laureates Begun and Boundary. That same night in Nitsa’s parallel room, the 10 Years of Hyperdub showcase put the venue’s soundsystem to the test with the bass-heavy journeys by label boss Kode9, who was joined by Laurel Halo and Scratcha DVA. Barcelona’s Nev.Era & Xarlene delivered one of the festival’s most powerful AV performances with their new album Contacto, while Wooky heightened the praise he has been garnering for his own new album Monjuic with a finely crafted live performance rendered cinematic by the visuals of collaborator Videocratz.
Daytime workshops and talks were as equally well attended as the highly anticipated nighttime performances. Here again a special mention goes to repeat MUTEK.ES collaborator Deadbeat for his involvement in a multi-day Ableton Live workshop focusing on production with recorded and found sound, as well as for leading the Children’s Push Playground workshop that encouraged first contact and experimentation with the creative possibilities digital technologies. Deadbeat’s daytime activities were as always very appreciated by festivalgoers, who showed up in large numbers. The children’s workshop in particular encouraged participation of new audiences at the festival, bringing together young families in a relaxed atmosphere of exploration and play. Pier Schneider brought in a full room for a larger than life presentation of his 1024 Architecture project created with Francois Wunschel, a spectacular and humour-filled theatrical AV piece that made waves at the festival and that was graciously supported by the Institut Francais. All of the festival’s daytime activities were once again headquartered at the stunning Convent Sant Augusti, whose exceptional space and gracious crew helped create a truly welcoming central meeting point during the festival.
The MUTEK.ES team is extremely proud of this 5th anniversary edition, which through the overwhelmingly positive feedback from the audience, press, and participants, as well as the notable rise in attendance, consolidated the event’s reputation as an incubator and international platform for local creativity. A heartfelt thank you is extended to all participating artists, partners and sponsors, festivalgoers, and especially to the team of dedicated volunteers that made the event possible. A special thank you goes out to Javier Torner, who worked tirelessly to develop this year’s festival mobile phone app, as well as to the students of the Master Cultural program of the Instituto Superior de Protocolo de Eventos, who came from Madrid to volunteer at the festival.
Stay tuned as the MUTEK family’s global anniversary year continues with the highly anticipated 15th anniversary edition of the original MUTEK Montreal festival that runs 27 May – 1 June, 2014.
And see you at the 6th edition of MUTEK.ES in March 2015!
MUTEK.ES would like to thank the following partners for supporting its 5th edition: Red Bull Music Academy, Nitsa, Convent Sant Augusti, Institut Francais, Grup Balaña, Moog, Call & Play, Deezer, TravellingAroundMusic, Struments, Loop Studies, Bodegas Grupo Dominio de Tare
The festival is grateful for the ongoing support of media partners: Resident Advisor, BTV, Radio 3, RTVE, Playground, Clubbingspain, DJ Mag España, Hunger Culture, Blisstopic, Beatburguer, Neonized