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Returning to India, this Dutchman will have you in a trance with his ASOT festival

In 2013, he wowed fans with A State Of Trance, but Armin van Buuren is bringing back A State Of Trance in its latest avatar – the ASOT Festival. As part of the Sunburn and Percept Live’s bid to change the way fans look at EDM, the shows in Hyderabad and Mumbai are expected to be a party. The five-time World Number One DJ divulges more, before his gig and release of Armin Anthems to celebrate 20 years as a producer.

India as a artiste space.
Indian fans have a great understanding of EDM, and the scene has only grown multifold since I last visited. It’s a cultural movement and I think only retrospectively will we be able to confirm that.

Collaborating with locals.
I’d love to do some experimental music with Anoushka Shanker or Zakir Hussain.

Current favourite DJ.
Dutch master-mixer Ben Liebrand. Also, I’m still in awe of DJs like Carl Cox and Sasha.

Switching around the set.
A DJ set is really based on what you feel. It’s really on-the-spot decisions which cater to the vibes, atmosphere and actual situation. But there are a few tracks I’d want to play because those will have prepared visuals.

What can the audience expect?
It’s going to be an intense night of eclectic trance, state of the art production and a stellar line-up. The State of Trance, my radio show, will now be turned into a full-scale festival. So I will have multiple rooms of different music in a big arena.

Popularity of trance.
I’ve got to be honest with you, I don’t think that trance is the most popular sound right now in EDM, but I keep supporting it simply because I love it. It is really close to my heart.

What inspires you?
The ingredients for a great DJ – the connection to the audience, mixing your songs, song selection, and different emotional peaks, highs and lows – you’re there, conducting it.

Tour essentials.
My fitness gear, a family photograph and a book.

If not a DJ you’d have been?
I wanted to be a doctor, because my dad was a general practitioner and I liked everything that had to do with medical stuff. But, in Holland, only 1,500 students can join the basic medical school each year to become a doctor as it is very expensive. So I opted for law.
June 5, Hyderabad and June 6, Mumbai. Tickets (`3,000 upwards) on bookmyshow.com

Aakanksha Devi


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