BRITISH COLUMBIA

EDM Warehouse Raves Legalized In Vancouver

12/31/2015 11:12 EST | Updated 12/31/2016 05:12 EST
Paul West via Getty Images
Capturing the indoor/warehouse rave scene. 4am and still going strong
An electronic dance music promoter says he is pleased that the City of Vancouver now offers a license allowing three EDM shows per month, per venue in the city.

The new license, voted into law earlier this month, effectively makes so-called warehouse raves legal in Vancouver.

Previously, such activities, though a mainstay of the underground electronic music scene, were unsanctioned and often shut down. But all that is now a thing of the past, says Matt Troy of the Vancouver Art and Leisure Society.

"Its nice to see city council and the mayor say this is important."

"It means that we're important, and that we're valued because previously we may have felt like our artform was illegal, our artform was not wanted," said Troy.

Troy has been involved in a pilot program with the city for the past two years, where three shows were allowed per month in non-traditional spaces.

"We've done them everywhere from automotive repair shops to dental labs," Troy said.

"Its nice to see city council and the mayor say this is important, this is a part of shaping Vancouver's cultural fabric," Troy said.

"I think this is the beginning of Vancouver leading nationally in terms of arts and culture programing, because it's not just EDM, it's all types of artistic shows and events at alternative spaces."

vancouver city hall

Vancouver city hall. (Photo: GoToVan/Flickr)

Harking back to times past, Troy said it was true that part of the thrill of hosting unsanctioned events was the idea that you might be shut down — but that in the end, that could have negative results.

"If an event gets shut down, artists are left without the money to be compensated. The whole city loses, the audience members, they're not able to participate .. and more events are less likely to occur in the future when that happens."

He said that, though some groups may still operate underground, he hopes the city will increase the number of these events allowed in the future, to make it easier for more promoters and groups to become involved.

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