Every spring for the last three decades, electronic music fans and artists have gathered in Miami to spend a week celebrating the music that powers parties around the world.
For its 30th anniversary, the Winter Music Conference has assembled a lengthy and intriguing list of sessions and performances that run from March 24 to 28. As the conference ends, the massive three-day Ultra Music Festival, held March 27 to 29, features one of the biggest annual events thrown by the Magic City.
WMC 2015 kicks off a busy week with exhibits at the Deauville Beach Resort in Miami Beach. The hall is expected to be packed with instruments, gear and equipment aimed specifically at DJs and producers seeking an edge in a rapidly evolving genre.
Artists and producers already in the industry, as well as those looking to break in, can benefit the most from sessions whose topics include working with record labels, building an audience and promoting the work.
The biggest single industry event that isn’t a show at a club, the 30th Annual International Dance Music Awards, is on March 26. It’s the only award show worldwide dedicated solely to dance and electronic music and its surrounding industries. The 58 categories receive more than two million votes from fans around the world, according to conference promoters. Attending is one of the best ways to get up on new artists and trends that are making people move.
A WMC badge covers more than just the price of conference admission, though. Each night of the week, clubs around Miami host parties thrown by the hottest DJs and up and coming talent. Cruising around the Magic City in a Silvercar, party-hopping is easy because of the many conference-sponsored and unofficial parties that rage all over Miami.
As the week ends, more than 30,000 people begin assembling for ULTRA in downtown Miami, one of the biggest electronic music festivals in the world. This year’s festival includes headlining sets from Skrillex, Tiesto, Aviici and Steve Aoki. Multi- and single-day passes are available for the festival, and a clear weekend schedule is required to catch the seemingly endless list of performers.