The massive festival that we know of today didn’t start off as you may picture it in your head. 2019 tickets sold out in under an hour, with people purchasing them from every corner of the world. Back in 2005 though, Tomorrowland’s festival goers didn’t have the same jaw-dropping experience as they do now. The stages were not nearly as creative or elaborate, and the crowds were a fraction of what they are now.
Here is the evolution of Tomorrowland – the world’s most popular festival that was started in Belgium.
2005: The first edition of the festival took place on August 14, 2005. Two Belgian brothers, Mauricio and Gael with Andres Unidos Cisneros, organized the festival. Performers included Push (M.I.K.E.), Armin van Buuren, Cor Fijneman, Yves Deruyter, Technoboy, and Coone.
2006: The second festival, on July 30, 2006, hosted Armin van Buuren, David Guetta, Fred Baker, DJ Zany, Ruthless,and Marco Bailey. DJ and producer Paul Oakenfold was also announced on the poster, but canceled at the last moment, as he was on tour with Madonna at the time
2007: The third year, the festival lasted two days for the first time in its history, taking place on July 28 and 29, 2007
2008: the festival took place on July 26 and 27. For the first time, more than 100 DJs participated. The number of visitors exceeded 50,000 for the first time as well.
2009: Tomorrowland took place on July 25 and 26 and attracted over 90,000 people which break it’s previous record. The special act on the main stage was Moby. The festival saw the use of a theme for the first time – Masker (Mask).
2010: Tomorrowland sold out days before the event, with a record attendance of 120,000 visitors over two days. The festival’s theme was “Zon (Sun)” and was nominated for the Best Music Event by the International Dance Music Awards.
2011: Marked the festival’s expansion to three days. Only a few days after the official pre-sale of tickets kicked off, Tomorrowland was completely sold out and had over 180,000 visitors.
2012: Tomorrowland took place between from July 27–29, 2012, at the De Schorre, a provincial recreation area in Boom, Belgium. The line-up consisted of 400 DJs. 185,000 people from over 75 countries around the world were in attendance, with 35,000 of them staying in Dreamville. Because of the enormous success of Tomorrowland and the fact that it is a Belgian festival, ID&T decided to give Belgians an exclusive chance with a pre-sale (80,000 of the 185,000 tickets) on March 24. In less than one day, all of the tickets sold out and at some moments there were 2,000,000 people on the online waiting list.
2013: Tomorrowland took place on July 26–28 and reached over 180,000 attendees at De Schorre in Boom, Belgium. Full madness passes sold out in 35 minutes, and the remainder of tickets sold out in a reported one second.
2014: To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the festival, and to meet the high demand for tickets, the 2014 edition of Tomorrowland would be held over two weekends; 18–20 July and 25–27 July. MTV announced that it would produce two hour-long MTV World Stage specials featuring performances from the festival and that it would produce a documentary surrounding the 10th anniversary of Tomorrowland.
2015: Tomorrowland 2015 has taken place on 24, 25, and 26 July 2015 and saw 180,000 visitors. The theme for the year was “The Secret Kingdom of Melodia”.
2016: Took place on 22, 23, and 24 July. The theme for the year was “The Elixir of Life” and saw 180,000 visitors. The 2016 edition of Tomorrowland saw a surprise set from Tiësto on the Thursday prior to the weekend and was sponsored by Budweiser.
2017: Saw Tomorrowland expand to a two weekend event for the first time since their tenth anniversary in 2014. The theme, “Amicorum Spectaculum”, and dates were announced in January 2017, and was scheduled for the final two weekends of July 2017, the 21-23 and 28-30 July. This year, a record number of tickets were sold – 400,000 spanning the two weekends. The festival saw a massive increase in the number of performers to span the 16 stages, including regulars and a lot of artists making their festival debut.
2018: The 2018 edition of Tomorrowland saw an attendance of 400,000 people for the second year running across the two weekends. The festival took place on Friday 20 to Sunday 22 July and Friday 27 to Sunday 29 July with tickets for the two weekends selling out in an hour. The theme for the 2018 edition of the festival was “The Story of Planaxis”. Tomorrowland 2018 also saw a lot of Avicii tributes to commemorate the death of the Swedish DJ three months prior to the festival.
2019: What surprises does Tomorrowland have in store for everyone this year? We’re not sure – but what we do know is for you to live your best life, you’ll need your Baja Llama shirts on! #FightAgainstBoring
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