This year Red Bull Music Academy alighted in the big, but idyllic city of Montreal for the 18th edition RBMA, located in the Phi center, Old town. The cultural center houses exhibitions, film, technology and a lot more. With help from local creative directors and designers, RBMA rebuild and -designed the complete interior with 10 home studios, a lecture hall, and a restaurant. When you enter the building, you directly step into a creative space that brings you back to Montreal in the 70’s.
Every year the Red Bull Music Academy takes place in a different city with participants from all over the world, giving them a chance to explore their musicality throughout lectures and access to professional studios. This year, the participants have access to 10 home studios and 1 live studio no less, which are all accessible 24 hours a day with facilities from analog drumcomputers and pianos, to live instruments. Between the lectures from artists such as pioneer DJ Robert Ouimet, old RBMA participant and South Africa’s house hero Black Coffee, 92-year-old and the third man to helm the Sun Ra Arkestra Marshall Allen and many more, they jump in the studio to put all the information and inspiration to work. With 70 participants and 35 in the first term from 38 different countries you understand that the Phi center quickly turned in a flourishing mixture of music.
After 2 weeks of living and creating together, the group of participants turned into a tight group, it almost felt like you entered an intense school camp where it doesn't matter where you're from or who you are. During the closing showcases where the participants played the songs they've created over the 2 weeks, Just Blaze, who was an RBMA mentor, turned the lecture hall into a serious house party. The first term came to an end, and you could feel a sort of relief but also sadness in the air. Friendships where made, collaborations started, and the participants went home into a creative future. The 1st term of the Red Bull Music Academy was yet again a success and we want to thank Red Bull Netherlands for inviting us and giving us the chance to experience the academy up close.