There is really nothing worse than dancing your ass off until 4 a.m. and then all of a sudden the lighting gains an emphasis on the red-and-blue. Great. Time to shuffle out of this makeshift venue and cross your fingers that no one hassles you (or worse, arrests you) on your way out. “I just came to dance, man.”
After a two year pilot program, the city council of Vancouver, BC has recently signed a new policy into law. It allows for artistic events (including EDM shows) to take place in industrial spaces late into the night. City Hall recognizes EDM events as artistic ventures, and therefore will allow three EDM shows to take place per month per venue.
This is a huge victory for the EDM community as well as the underground scene, even if the end result is that it’s above-ground. In theory, the license should make raves safer, more frequent, cheaper, and above all, legal. Inevitably, particularly with a three-show limit per month, not all events will obtain licenses and will operate illegally. So if you’re truly insistent on attending illegal shows, there’s hope. Maybe going above ground isn’t the most ideal thing for the underground scene.
Promoters will still have to follow certain health and safety regulations; that’s part of the deal. The big downfall is the three-event-per-month limit, but it’s better than the alternative of operating under risky circumstances. If nothing else, this is a step in the right direction. It’s nice to see the government and the dance community meeting somewhere in the middle. After all, the goal of EDM events is to have a good time, and if these licenses will allow for that to happen legally and more safely, we’re all for it.
We can only hope that this program will serve as a positive example for what can be accomplished when the city and members of the community come together. Now keep your fingers crossed that other PNW cities like Seattle and Portland are next!
What do you think? Is this legislation good news or bad news for the EDM community?
Get all the latest Pacific Northwest nightlife news, directly to your inbox.