The Sherp takes a look at the history of Movement, Detroit, where Techno started and continues to thrive.

The first electronic music festival held in Detroit was the Detroit Electronic Music Festival back in the year 2000. Taking place in Detroit’s Hart Plaza, it was a landmark event that brought visitors from all over the world to celebrate Techno music in the city of its birth. The event went through several incarnations and names in its first few years which finally gave birth to the Movement Electronic Music Festival, which has since evolved into one of the world’s largest electronic music festivals. It continues to uphold the traditions of the original festival, featuring performances by musicians and DJs while emphasizing the progressive qualities of the culture surrounding electronic music.

1. Two of techno’s godfathers, Kevin Saunderson and Derrick May, played as producers of Detroit’s premier festival from 2001-2005 before current promoters Paxahau took over. Their knowledge of the foundations of dance music helped build the Movement brand to what it is today.


Courtesy : Beatport


2. Celebrating its 10th anniversary as head promoters, Paxahau has seen Movement grow into the one of the biggest and longest running electronic music festivals in America.


Courtesy : Paxahau

3. Since its inception, Movement has called Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit home. The concrete park is situated right along the Detroit River and the Canadian border making it the perfect place to showcase the urban beginnings of the techno genre.


Courtesy : The Guardian

4. As a festival for all ages, Movement does not discriminate, welcoming the youngest of fans to seasoned rave flag bearers.


5. These two pictures show the growth that the Detroit festival has seen in recent years. Movement has developed from a small, boutique event to an international brand with its own iteration in Torino, Italy.


6. Known for its always eclectic lineup, Paxahau takes pride in melding today’s lesser known artists with some of the dance music’s most well-known faces. A local native of the Detroit area, Windsor-bred Richie Hawtin has been a staple of the festival for years and continues his residency this Memorial Day weekend.


Courtesy : Beatport


7. Growing alongside its rich history of electronic music, Detroit fosters a vibrant dance community which can be seen in full force during the Festival. From BBoys and girls to poppers, freestyle dancers and housers, Movement attracts self-expression in all forms and celebrates an individual’s creativity.


Courtesy : Bryan Mitchel

8. With many festival stages having fictional names, it is rare to see one that accurately depicts its purpose. The Underground Stage at movement is located beneath the main festival grounds and boasts the best in dance music’s more obscure and harder sounds. Be sure to bring your ear plugs however because it gets loud!


Courtesy : James Parker & Nicholas Kiehle


9. While Movement is known for showcasing the art of the DJ, Paxahau also understands that dance music is not solely a DJ’s world but that the live element also plays a part. In 2011, New York based jazz house band Tortured Soul graced the Vitaminwater stage for a thrilling high-energy performance.


Courtesy : Paxahau


10. As the current Movement Festival celebrates its tenth anniversary this weekend, it has seen tremendous growth in attendance and talent. With a passionate promoter such as Paxahau who understands the city’s history and who takes pride in their thought out curation each year, Movement will continue to give Detroit a premier electronic music festival it deserves.

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