Sónar brings the world together at international festivals that started in Barcelona

On the 14, 15, 16 and 17 June, Sónar Barcelona will celebrate its 24th edition in Barcelona, and later this year it will continue the Latin America leg of its international tour in Buenos Aires, Bogotá and Santiago de Chile.

What can Aurora learn from an international festival that hits various cities and has already brought 25,000 people to cities like Hong Kong, Istanbul, and the capital of Iceland?

Sónar is the International Festival of Advanced Music and Congress of Technology and Creativity, celebrated during three days every June in Barcelona. In addition to the 23 festivals in Barcelona, it has held 59 festivals around the world since 2002.

Sónar came to Chicago in 2010 and 2012.

How does a festival grow to encompasse the world? A music festival that started in one city and grew.

Explore Sónar with us this June in Barcelona, Spain.

Sónar Barcelona 2017 adds more than 60 artists to the program. Among them, highlights include Thundercat, a superlative bassist combining soul and old-fashioned funk with psychedelic electronica, who will present his latest album, “Drunk”, at SonarDôme.

The legendary French musician Cerrone, a regular at Studio 54 and creator of disco hits such as “Supernature” and “Love In C Minor”, will present a special show at Sónar by Night with projections, live vocalists and all the hits from his celebrated career. Before Cerrone there will be another dance music pioneer, Spanish DJ Fran Lenaeres, and the legacy of the “French Touch” will be explored following his performance with a set from Clara 3000 and Justice live show.

Hailing from the UK Sohn, a master of electronic pop with melancholic touches and hight emotional content, comes to Sónarwith new album under his belt, the excellent “Rennen”.

Andy Stott, one of the international scene’s most respected producers, will offer a dark techno and dub-house live show with his latest album, “Too Many Voices”, playing a central role.

There are also three exciting performanes by women who are each trasforming their respective genres: DΔWN, reshaping R&B with futuristic pop; Jlin, whose footwork moves towards abstraction; the charismatic Princess Nokia, the new figurehead of New York hip hop and trap from New York.

SonarXS, the new stage at Sónar by Day

Sónar by Day will feature a new stage. SonarXS, a space with its own personality dedicated to showcasing the freshest,  rawest and most uncompromising forms of electronic music, currently breaking out from the streets. From digital reggaeton, noise collage, dancehall and the latest innovations in the constantly evolving trap sound.

Artists of note include the new star of dancehall Bad Gyal, Andalucian footwork maestros BCN Posse and the popular MC’s Bejo and Dellafuente, who will perform with his partner in crime Maka.

Also cofirmed for the stage are artists including Kiddy Smile (France’s premiere exponent of the ballroom house scene), Conor Thomas (with his experimental and radical club sounds), Deena Abdelwahed (whose future beats are mixed with traditional Tunisian music), Total Freedom (uncompromised sound collage that joins the dots between  trance and Latin rhythms), DJ Florentino (bringing digital and futuristic reggaeton), Aethereal Arthropod (drone, ambient, speedcore).
Further names will be added to the SonarXS program in the coming weeks.
Tech-shows, new sounds and masters of the dance floor
Sónar by Night adds artists of the highest calibre to its extensive dance music program.
This is certainly the case for the Iranian-born American Dubfire, one of the world’s most highly regarded techno djs; New Yorker Nick Hook, collaborator with Baauer, Dj Rashad and Prefuse 73, who will follow up his acclaimed performance at SonarVillage two years ago; Canada’s Jacques Greene, a producer and DJ who has rejuvinated house music and whose album is due for imminent release. Parisian dj Clara 3000, a standout member of the Kill The Dj collective; and a very special duo formed by two of today’s most invigorating selectors and producers: Avalon Emerson & Courtesy.
Sónar by Day also features two women with a very personal artistic discourse: Argentina’s Juana Molina (about to release a new electronic leaning album) and  Elysia Crampton, an American of Bolivian descent whose music mixes ancestral Latin sounds with advanced digital production. Also performing will be the powerful electronic hip hop trio Keys N Krates; Jacques, the new star of French electronic synth pop house; and the legendary resident of London’s Fabric club, British DJ Craig Richards. 
This year three of Sónar‘s most amazing technological performances will be: “Shiro”, a striking new AV show from Nonotak, who have become one of the most important creative projects working with new technologies for scenic and stage design in the world; Boris Chimp 504, a real-time audiovisual performance that emphasizes the relationship between sound synthesis and graphic language, and shares the story of the first chimpanzee sent to the moon in 1969; and Tarik Barri ft. Lea Fabrikant, the Dutch multidisciplinary experimenter and Radiohead and Nicolas Jaar collaborator, with a show where several objects located in a 3D space, generate sound from different interactions and movements.
Red Bull Music Academy and Sónar complete the SonarDôme program
The SonarDôme stage program, curated by Red Bull Music Academy and Sónar, is completed with the incorporation of 19 artists, among them several well-known names and numerous young talents and projects emerging from the classrooms of RBMA.
Established names of note include Thundercat, who will present his new and critically acclaimed LP “Drunk”; Experimental American duo Matmos; the world premiere of the “Floorplan Live” show by Detroit techno master Robert Hood, together with Lyric; the superlative dj and Minimal Wave label chief Veronica Vasicka; the extraordinary young MC Earl Sweatshirt, an eminent member of the Odd Future collective; And, of course, C. Tangana, perhaps the most popular and relevant name in today’s national rap scene.
Joining them, RBMA adds another thirteen new emerging producers, musicians and projects: Suicideyear (US), Denis Sulta (UK), Star Eyes b2b DJ Jubilee (US), RayRay (Thailand), Daniel Brandt & Eternal Something (DE), Miiin (Korea), Etyen (Lebanon), Crystal / Sparrows (Japan), Ghostly Enemies (ES), Huma (ES), Lanoche (ES), Lamusa and Sofie Winterson (DE).

The leading artists in national electronic music scene

Among the new national artists added to the festival program are Catalan group Anímic,  the most uncompromising and risk taking bands in the country, with their new and excellent album, “Skin”, in which synthesizers dominate their sound; Aitor Extebarria, El_Txef_A, accompanied by several musicians on stage, will performe the soundtrack composed for a documentary about the bombing of Gernika live; and for the first time at Sónar, the remarkable Fran Lenaers, the pioneering Valencian dj who mixed guitar and dance music in the glory days of Spanish electronica before the Ruta del Bakalao.
In addition to the above, Sónar adds 12 other local artists and projects from the scene to its program, tracing through all national scene variants, showcasing the very best from each genre.
Among the highlights are Fira Fem, who will play songs from their recent and more electronic album, “Vida Nueva”; the tropical and psychedelic Playback Maracas, one of this year’s most pleasing surprises, who will perform their vibrant live show; and the stylised, emotive and scientific pop of Connectome.
Sónar will also present the talent, vision and wide ranging knowledge of the country’s best djs and selectors: Bawrut (techno, acid), Diego Armando (African rhythms, dub), Tutu (dance, pop, electronica), Judah (hip hop, funk), Telmo Trenor (beats), Mario Nieto (breaks, future beats), Rumore (house, balearic) and Sandro Jeeawock (r&b, footwork).
“Björk Digital”, the immersive Björk exhibition
From June 14 to September 24, the “Björk Digital” exhibition will be running at the Barcelona’s Centre for Contemporary Culture (CCCB). This extraordinary immersive exhibition features digital and video works from the iconic Icelandic artist’s collaborations with some of the world’s best visual artists and programmers.
“Björk Digital” at Barcelona’s Centre for Contemporary Culture will remain open until September 24, its longest run to date, following shows in Tokyo, Sydney, Montreal, Reykjavík, London, Mexico and Los Angeles (from May 19 to June 4) and will offer a unique opportunity to visit the exhibition in Spain.
“Björk Digital” is an immersive exhibition conceived as an experience to submerge oneself in the unique creative universe of Björk, with Virtual Reality playing a major role. The exhibition combining performance, cinema, installation, video and interaction, includes several audiovisual pieces produced with the latest technology in Virtual Reality, and will display several works Björk has created in collaboration with artists such as Michel Gondry, Spike Jonze, Alexander McQueen, Nick Knight, Stephane Sednaoui, and more recently Jesse Kanda, Andrew Thomas Huang, Warren du Prees and Nick Thornton Jones.
“Björk Digital” is a co-production between the CCCB and Sold Out, in collaboration with Sónar.

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