We interviewed Jeremie Akiba director of Dementia Events producer of Lights Out Festival, July 21, 2012, Miami and we are excited about Dementia Events!
When did JJ and you decide to start Dementia Events?
The idea behind Dementia Events and throwing large-scale music festivalscame to JJ and I about two years ago. We originally had a ton of ideas flowing between the two of us, and after fine-tuning our plan and critiquing each others’ ideas, Lights Out Festival was born. This has been years in the making, and I can’t wait to see the event finally come to fruition.
What did it take to finally get to hosting events and being successful at it?
I have been involved in the Miami nightlife industry for four years and after attending special event after special event, I was able to pinpoint exactly which facets of each affair appealed to the masses, and that is what we are bringing to Lights Out Festival: the best aspects of all events that our guests have ever been to whether it be lighting, sound, decor or energy.
Stepping back in your history a little bit, What is the underground scene in Paris like compared to Florida?
The underground scene in Paris simply just doesn’t compare to the underground scene in Miami. Our plan is to create an underground scene here in Miami by allowing our guests to listen to up-and-comers, nearly all of whom they would never hear on the radio, and would only know about if they did some research on the EDM industry themselves. By building the followings of current people on the rise, it allows for the promotion of themselves and their music, allowing for new additions to move into the underground scene. It’s a transition process.
How does it feel to produce your first event Lights Out Festival?
It’s truly exhilarating to be a part of something that we’re hoping will become a staple in the city of Miami. And to be able to do it right in my own backyard, I couldn’t have asked for more. What I’m most excited for is to see the whole venue set up the day of the event and being able to say, “This is exactly what I envisioned, now here you go everyone, enjoy yourselves.”
Has it been a lot of work?
With such a big production, communication is critical between all members of my team. There is no way that I would have been able to do all of this myself. There’s a team of four of us that make sure everything is executed to perfection. Without them, I wouldn’t even have the opportunity to speak with you today. I’m so grateful for the squad that we have and it’s reassuring to know that if something needs to be taken care of, my team has the ability to get it done.
Are you all excited?
We’re really stoked about the event, I’m not going to lie. In all honesty, we here at Dementia Events literally can’t wait for everyone to journey into the musical vision that we have created.
What are you looking forward to at Lights Out Festival?
I can’t wait to see the look on everyone’s faces once they see the environment that we have created for them. A lot of time and effort has gone directly into thinking solely about the guest’s comfort, and we have many amenities that exemplify that such as private viewing areas, private bars, air-conditioned restrooms, misting stations – you get the idea.
Tell us about donating a portion of proceeds from Lights Out and what that means?
We are donating a percentage of our festival’s proceeds to the Miami-Dade Public School music programs. We believe that giving back to the city that allows us the opportunity to create an event is something that the cities themselves deserve. Also, by giving back to music programs in general, our city’s youth may now have the ability to engage in a music program that their school may never have been able to offer without our donation. Donating is truly the most gratifying thing in the world today, and hopefully our efforts reach brilliant heights, like those of someone like Jimi Hendrix.
We love the idea of Lights Out Festival being a “union between light and sound”- how do you think Lights Out Festival will deliver this message?
All I’m going to say in regard to this is that we have gone completely over the top, so bring your A-game. I’m sorry for not elaborating any more, but the aspects of our production are things that you’re going to have to come and see for yourself!
What future events does Dementia Events have planned and/or hope to hold?
Lights Out Festival is set to occur seasonally, bringing back different artists each time. We are going to continue to bring you access to some of your favorite artists at cheap prices, the way that it should be. We plan on touring the East Coast as well in months to come, making stops in Washington D.C. and New York. We’ll keep everyone in the loop about artists and venues once we close in on the dates.
Is there any specific artist or location that you hope you get to work with through Dementia?
Ideally, I would love to take Lights Out Festival overseas and back to my homeland of France. I have always dreamed of putting David Guetta where my favorite soccer team, PSG plays, at the Parc des Princes. Nearly 50,000 screaming fans begging for more “sexy, Frenchy house music.” Wow, that would truly be epic.
Thank you Jeremie and be sure to check out Lights Out Festival coming up July 21,