Since EDC Las Vegas, we've all listened to a lot of live set recordings, and gazed at dozens of pretty pictures. Let's step away from the festival aftermath, and take a look at an incredibly unique perspective of EDC Las Vegas 2014.
In addition to the world's biggest DJs, EDC's main stage, the Kinetic Field, featured awe-inspiring theatrics. At the center of these performances were two charters played by Jeffrey Damnit, the Owl Priest, and Anthony Montemarano, the Organ Conductor.
Following the festival, EDM Sauce got a chance to talk to Jeffrey Damnit. We learned a little bit about him, a lot about what it's like being the center of attention for 3 nights on North American's biggest stage.
First, we were curious as to what exactly it means to be EDC's Owl Priest: Is there an exact Job description?
“The job was, along with the Organ Conductor (Anthony Montemarano), playing out the storyline of the stage show that was delivered through the music, huge LCD screens visuals, lights, lasers, and pyrotechnics.”
“We took the audience on a fantastic journey drawing us all away from reality for the night and then back to where it all began before the sun got too high in the morning sky. The Owl Priest was the ‘Master of Ceremonies'.”
We thought that an on-stage character was simply called an “MC” or “Main Character” but Jeffrey explained that Insomniac wanted to make sure that there was no confusion:
“It’s funny; we wanted to make sure that it was never just termed, “MC”, due to any confusion it may have caused with MCs in EDM or hip hop who have a completely different job description. I can’t rap and we wanted to make sure nobody expected me to bust out some rhymes. Throughout the week in Vegas the title changed a few times depending on who you asked. I was called everything from Master Of Ceremonies and Owl Priest, to Storyteller, Host, and even just The Wizard. It didn’t matter what they were calling me, I just knew I was having a blast…”
The Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas is a special event for everyone. Even the performers find the festival incomparable to others:
“I’ve been to large events before but nothing can compare to this party. The feeling of community that encompassed the 1.5 mile oval race track that we all shared will stick with us for the rest of our lives. Being out in front of the crowd took us instantly away from the fact that we were actually ‘working' and the home we all shared on and behind our stage was one of the most mind blowing experiences ever. That was the largest stage ever constructed in North America and this crew handled it like they’ve been living on it their whole lives. I feel truly blessed to have had the honor of working with them all…”
Having the privilege of working with Insomniac meant working with the most talented people in the world. Jeffrey talks about his first experience working with Insomniac and how grateful he was for the opportunity:
“This was my first time working with Insomniac. Jeffrey Erens and his crew in Holland wrote and produced the whole set of 9 vignettes you saw between the DJs. All of the scripts, music, visuals, etc. came to us from that talented crew overseas. They then sent it to Insomniac where Jila, Bunny, and their crew got a hold of it and eventually I got lucky enough to receive the phone call asking if I was interested in being their Master of Ceremonies. Of course, I happily jumped at the amazing opportunity. Then we all ran with it together and made sure to take the crowd on that beautiful trip we had at The Kinetic Field stage.”
Nobody goes to EDC without sharing time with thousands of wonderful people. We checked in with the “Owl Priest” about his experiences with the fans and the crowd at EDC:
“These were truly amazing people who made the energy of this immense party spread all throughout the Speedway. The love they all had for the music, the DJs, and the party itself was infectious. You couldn’t go anywhere without feeling it. It was a truly magical event. They kept us going strong all weekend long.”
Jeffrey also talked about the crew on the Kinetic Field:
“I wish I could remember all hundred names but it would be too much to print here anyway. They were all astonishing people! The ones who I was locked to the most throughout the weekend were the people running the live-performance artists. They had to keep it together for all the dancers, aerialists, acrobats, and us.”
I'm sure we've all imagined what it would be like to take the main stage at EDC. Jeffrey Damnit did it for three full nights. His performance helped give EDC a special feel for fans. We're excited to share his words about what it was like to be EDC's Owl Priest. You can see what Jeffrey is doing now by following him on facebook.
Jeffrey wanted to give a special thanks to some of his EDC co-workers including makeup artist Heidi, stage-cast managers/handlers Robin, Sophie, Gert, his wardrobe crew including Tonya & Tiffany, and Insomniac's Jila, Bunny, and Pasquale. Make sure you catch him as Main Stage Master Of Ceremonies for West Hollywood’s Halloween Carnival: The largest Halloween street party in the world.