SUNDAY TIMES - The Ultra monster dance music marathon is swinging through SA
Sunday Times Entertainment By Yolisa Mkele, 2017-02-17 12:40:03.0

The Ultra monster dance music marathon is swinging through SA

Dutch DJ Martin Garrix will perform at Ultra dance festival in South Africa this year.

Do you have a sleeveless shirt, espadrilles and a pair of pastel-coloured, above-the-knee shorts that have been dying to go on a bender? You're in luck because Ultra is back in town and that is the de facto uniform of all male attendees.

For those living in the dance music bundu, Ultra is a dance music festival that descends on dozens of cities across the globe.

For a day it deposits climate- changing amounts of dance music into that city's atmosphere before moving on to its next location, leaving the husks of exhausted revellers in its wake.

The South African leg of Ultra will pass through Johannesburg and Cape Town, bringing with it one of the most exciting line-ups in the genre.

This year's headline acts include David Guetta, Martin Garrix, DJ Snake, Dash Berlin and KSHMR, who between them are some of the biggest names in what your father would call "doof doof" music.

They will be joined by enough local DJs to spin their way out of any parliamentary question-and- answer session. They include Black Coffee, DJ Fresh and Euphonik and Transmicsoul.

Headliner Garrix on playing in South Africa

What do you think of the local EDM scene?

I love discovering new talent, DJ's with a refreshing sound.

Your schedule is crazy. Do you ever sleep?

Yes, I love sleeping. I know it's a busy and hectic lifestyle, but I'm not complaining. I can sleep everywhere and anywhere, which helps.

How does performing in South Africa compare to other parts of the world?

There's a great vibe in South Africa! I loved the vibe here last year at Ultra. South Africa is a special place for me.

Having been so big for so long do you think the EDM scene may be on a plateau?

I think it's difficult to predict what's going to happen to EDM and I'm honestly not really focused on that. I just keep doing what I love most and that's making music.

Is there a local act you would like to work with?

That's a difficult question. There is not a name that pops up in my head immediately, but I would definitely be open to collaborating with local acts.

How will this performance be different from previous South African performances?

I always try to improve myself and my shows. My team is getting bigger and so are the productions. You can expect a bigger show with lots of new music.

Will you have any down time while you are here, and if so what do you plan to get up to?

I hope I will explore the nature around here - perhaps go on a safari.

Catch Ultra in Cape Town on February 24 and in Joburg on February 25. For tickets and more info, visit

• This article was originally published in The Times.