Our friend Robbert is a Dutch DJ, internationally known as Hardwell. Since 2013 we have worked together with Jaap Kamps to design, program and perform all of his shows around the world. In both 2013 and 2014, Hardwell was voted world’s number one DJ on DJ Mag.
In 2018 Robbert announced a break of unknown length. During ADE he did one last show with the Metropole Orkest, telling the story of Hardwell about a boy that started making music in his room, explored almost every music style, kept reinventing himself and grew out to be one of the biggest artists in the world.
Now Hardwell is back! The rumors were true: after a sabbatical of 3,5 years, Hardwell closed the main stage of Ultra Music Festival Miami 2022. And that is just the beginning. Hardwell is ready for a world tour - and we will be joining him!
Rebels never die
Hardwell always had his own distinctive style, but now more than ever he wants to create an unique and unforgettable experience. As a mature artist Hardwell knows what he wants. The whole concept of the “Rebels Never Die” tour is based on the new and undefined sound and moodboards from Hardwell himself. This way the tour is very different, personal and completely from the heart.
Several months ago we started working on the world tour of 2022. This also means we were one of the lucky few to listen to Hardwell’s new music before everyone else. Perks of the job! London based production and events company High Scream made the first concept of the stage design. Working closely together, we added the lighting design together with Jaap Kamps. After lots of fine tuning, the design was technically elaborated by Backbone International. The final set is now ready to travel the world.
In the old days, Hardwell was more EDM with his grand and bombastic shows. For this tour, we want to create something more intimate and personal - almost minimalistic. This all comes down to the details. The biggest challenge is the fact that Hardwell’s new music is more undefined, without a fixed rhythm or style. This makes programming way more challenging and time consuming, but certainly more interesting. To highlight the small and weird details, we like to ‘freak’ with the lighting.
The first show at Ultra Music Festival Miami 2022 was a great success! Although the main stage of the festival was not the ideal setting to create the desirable experience, we did not use lots of extra lights. We decided to use our creativity to play with the base setup. We started small, by darkening the stage and using only 3 lights in the back to show the silhouette of Hardwell. From there we took every track to another level, making the experience bigger and louder, step by step.
For this show, we also programmed the laser controls. The laser beams exploded at the 10th track called ‘Laser’. This way, after building up slowly, the laser show was a special surprise for the last few tracks. The crowd went wild! We can’t wait to feel this energy at the next show.
Photocredits: Jorrit Lousberg