Moogfest announces free and open-to-the-public events

Last night, Buncombe County leaders approved $90,000 in public funding for Moogfest, the technology and electronic music festival set to be held April 23-27. According to Xpress reporter Jake Frankel, “Moog Music and Moogfest President Mike Adams said the event will be a major economic boon to the area — to the tune of $30 million. He estimates that it will bring in $238,000 in tax revenue, more than paying back the county grant. The company is investing about $3 million in the festival, he said.”

Today, Moogfest announced that select components of the five-day event will be free and open to the public. These include a Modular Marketplace, a public tech expo in partnership with the North Carolina Technology Association, a placemaking design by Clemson School of Architecture, new media art installations that celebrate the synthesis of art and technology, and an outdoor music stage on Broadway Street in front of the Moog factory. Shows on that stage will take place Friday-Sunday, April 25-27. The lineup will be announced later this month.

Photo by Becky Upham

Press release

In an effort to ensure that Asheville and the surrounding community have access to the landmark speakers, performers and experiences the festival brings to Western North Carolina for the first time, Moogfest is opening up many of these unprecedented opportunities to area residents free of charge.

“Having been here since 1967, I have seen Asheville evolve from a vibrant but aging community, to near isolation, and now to one of the best places in America to live,” said Moog Music President Mike Adams. “As a result of its extensive programming, Moogfest will transform Asheville into a world class hub of media, arts, and technology for one full week in April. This will result in not only tremendous short term economic impact for our city, but could also establish new economic opportunities for generations to come.”

Beyond a traditional music festival, Moogfest aims to become an engine for driving economic development in Western North Carolina. While it will undoubtedly be a short-term, shot-in-the-arm for downtown retailers, restaurants and hotels, the long-term goal is to be a catalyst that encourages start-ups, entrepreneurs, and other job creators to consider Asheville as a viable option for locating their businesses.

According to Asheville Mayor Esther Manheimer, “The city’s strategic partnership with and support for Moogfest will serve as an economic development engine bringing more than an amazing music festival to Asheville. The conference and music festival will not only serve as boost for tourism, it will position Asheville as a hub of technology and creativity, attracting thousands of innovative thinkers, entrepreneurs and scientists to our great city.”

From public art exhibits to experimental music workshops to urban architectural installations, Moogfest 2014 will bring today’s foremost thinkers, artists, futurists, scientists, and innovators to downtown Asheville to engage in a dialogue of innovation and creativity. The goal is to stimulate conversations and introduce current and future generations to a new way of looking at the world around them.

Moogfest’s Modular Marketplace:
A unique element of Moogfest’s free programming is a Modular Marketplace that showcases the latest and greatest from a lineup of innovative instrument makers; boutique electronics, experimental effects and modern modular synthesizers will create an interactive exhibition in which the public can engage with new musical devices and their designers.

The Modular Marketplace will host daily demonstrations, workshops and sound experiments from the engineers that are shaping the sounds of tomorrow. There will also be a free week-long clinic on electronic music production from music hardware and software producer Ableton and world-renowned electronic music and DJ school, Dubspot.

Synthesis NCTA:
A public tech expo in partnership with the North Carolina Technology Association (NCTA), featuring demonstrations of the latest cutting-edge creative technologies produced by companies throughout the state, Synthesis will host exhibitions and entertainment showcasing the cool side of technology. This is also a great opportunity to learn about employment opportunities with these companies.

“NCTA is excited to partner with Moogfest to offer our member companies an opportunity to connect with an audience of early adopters of technology,” said Brooks Raiford, President & CEO, “It will also give festival goers the chance to see the great technology companies that are here in the state.

Along with NCTA, Moogfest is working in conjunction with many area partners, including The Media Arts Project (MAP) and the Clemson University School of Architecture, to develop a diversity of free programming.

Clemson School of Architecture:
As part of their spring project, Clemson’s senior architecture students collaborated on a placemaking design that combines Asheville’s unique downtown landscape and the temporary nature of a festival. Said Douglas Hecker, Associate Professor at Clemson School of Architecture, “Clemson University’s School of Architecture is excited to be working with Moogfest 2014 in developing a temporary urban space for the citizens of Asheville and festival goers. The space is being developed with Moogfest’s free outdoor programming and is designed to connect festival goers and the citizens of Asheville to each other and to the events happening in the many venues happening throughout the city during Moogfest.”

[MAP] The Media Arts Project:
Moogfest has partnered with The Media Arts Project (MAP), a local organization that has done great work on many regional events, including their annual {Re}HAPPENING at Black Mountain College. In collaboration, Moogfest and MAP issued a call to artists to submit proposals for new media art installations that celebrate the synthesis of art and technology.

“The MAP is thrilled to be collaborating with Moogfest on bringing the High Tech Art Exhibit to life,” said Ursula Gullow, MAP’s board chair. “The exhibition presents an exciting opportunity for the City of Asheville to showcase conceptual and interactive art pieces that merge technology with aesthetics, produced by local and international designers. Through this event The Media Arts Project and Moogfest are placing Asheville on the map as a vital arts and music destination.”

Over 50 submissions were received, and after careful judgment, less than 10 were accepted. Two of the pieces accepted were from Asheville and one is coming from as far away as Sweden.
These pieces all incorporate a certain element of user interaction. Artists have integrated audio, visual, and interactive elements to create one-of-a-kind temporary art installations. They will be installed in downtown Asheville along Lexington Avenue toward Broadway, turning the street into an interactive art playground.

Outdoor Music Stage:
Moogfest’s largest music venue will be an outdoor stage on Broadway St. in front of the Moog factory that will be free and open to the public. Shows will take place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (April 25th – 27th). The stage will feature new artists, a featured record label showcase and select headliners. Performance schedules will be announced later this month.


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