Most of us have experienced the incredible, mood-altering power of music.
- Posted on Feb 17th 2011 12:00PM by Melody Lau
"Last year's festival was amazing," Wavelength organizer Jonathan Bunce, better known as Jonny Dovercourt, tells Spinner. "It exceeded all expectations -- and we had pretty high expectations, it being our 10th anniversary and marking the end of our Sunday series."
Wavelength 500, their 10th anniversary, nearly sold out all their shows, packing nostalgic fans and old friends into different venues around the city, even reuniting local acts in the process. Most notably, on the festival's last night Owen Pallett performed as special guests, with an even more remarkable performance capping the night off.
"To me, with the Hidden Cameras reuniting, it showed me that Wavelength is this kind of thing that was outside of us," organizer Ryan McLaren says. "We didn't reunite the Hidden Cameras, Wavelength did."
Since then, the collective spent the year that followed reworking ideas and experimenting with even more elaborate projects. Dovercourt calls it Wavelength's "transitional period," which saw them present the Images Festival as well as taking the show on the road, bringing shows to Montreal and Guelph.
"We've always wanted it to be a bit more like a multi-arts road show than just an indie band night," he says. "I feel like, in our year with Wavelength, we went back underground. There was a little less awareness of what we were doing than there was in the past so it kind of gave us a chance to go underground and try some things."
While Dovercourt and McLaren lavished in their new-found freedom, there was uncertainty as to what the next step would be. "We were free to be creative," McLaren says. "But we didn't know what we wanted to do, if we wanted to make it strictly a monthly series or if we wanted to do or special projects."
The aptly titled ELEVEN festival (which kicked off yesterday and runs to till Feb. 20) features acts such as Woodhands, Maylee Todd, Lullabye Arkestra, Anagram, Neon Windbreaker and more. In addition, Wavelength will also start a speaker series and studio sessions with writers and musicians, respectively.
"We try to make every show a bit more unique now instead of an assembly line show production, which is what it eventually became," Dovercourt adds.
"We've definitely emerged and ELEVEN is the butterfly to the chrysalis... a better metaphor, please?"