Bridger Larsen: Utah’s Favorite Promoter

Bridger Larsen, a promoter for Utah’s most illustrious dance music company, a role-model for the masses, and everyone’s friend. This guy has more spunk and passion in his back pocket than most people can wish to accumulate in their lifetime. 
We are ecstatic to give you an interview with a well-revered promoter.
Sit back, and enjoy, we sure did! 
 
Intersect
 

Question 1: For the unknowing reader, what companies and projects are you currently promoting?

Answer 1: I am a social media marketer for V2 Presents! I have been working in this role for almost 4 years! In addition, I have been working for about 1.5 years as the Front Gates Staff Supervisor for all V2 Presents events that take place at The Saltair.

(Bridger pictured far left)

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Question 2: When thinking up posts to promote, what do you keep in mind? The professional approach or an approach that is more fitting for your social media viewers, friends and fans?

Answer 2: I would say it really depends on the post itself and what the “goal” of the post is. For posts regarding show announcements and line up drops, I usually find myself marketing more on a personal level where my followers can feel a legitimate connection. For V2 announcement posts, I tend to try to stay more professional as that is the tone of the content being shared. Most of my stuff is really just me. I was nervous at first because I have lots of friends, family, and old coworkers on my page that are not in the EDM community. I was worried they may find the content “spammy” or annoying. The plot twist for me was most of them actually like and comment on my stuff, but I realized it comes from a place of genuine interest as the post is written in a way all of my friends and family know is genuinely me. I have been to a lot of shows, seen a lot of artists, and shared a lot of experiences in this scene – this has allowed me to really connect with others in a deep way and build meaningful and sustainable relationships.

Question 3: Throughout your years as a fan, attendee, and promoter; what has been your favorite moments? Least favorite?

Answer 3:  A common reason a lot of us are here is because of the community aspect. Ever since I attended my first show, I knew I had a place I fit in. I’ve always felt a sense of inclusiveness at shows that do not exist in the “real world”. This has always been one of the reasons EDM means so much to me. I also love lasers! You can never go wrong with lasers. My least favorite part if I had to choose is the divide of fans between genres. Some may feel as though bass music and melodic music lovers cannot enjoy the same sounds. One of my best friends, who also is my boss and mentor, is huge into house music and I lean heavily on the side of bass music. We have shared some of our greatest memories simply due to sharing new experiences and showing each other new artists. I encourage every single person to check out a new artist at a festival they are attending this year! You may discover a new favorite just by taking the chance.

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Question 4: Seeing how you are a well-seasoned individual in the electronic dance music world, has there ever been a moment you were overwhelmingly proud to say that you are a part of this music phenomenon, we know as “EDM”?

Answer 4: In all reality, the answer is all the time! I am and will forever be overwhelmingly proud to say that I am and will always be a part of the legendary EDM community. This community saved and continues to save my life. I am a stronger and happier person because of electronic dance music and those the love it as much as I. Being a social marketer for Utah’s largest electronic dance promoter is a dream come true and getting to share the same experiences that helped save my life is the best part. 

Question 5: Out of all the venues, events, club shows, festivals and, states you have had the pleasure of attending and visiting; who holds the number one spot for each aspect. List out your number ones!

Answer 5: Oh man, that is a hard one! I will do my best to answer but I may have some that tie for first!
VENUE: The Gorge in Washington or Red Rocks in Colorado. Taking some of the most beautiful views in the world and building a venue out of them. Life-changing!!
SLC EVENT: My first ever festival and the home to so many of my favorite memories is Das Energi. Those sunsets hit different over the salt flats!! Also the first time I saw two of my top five favorite artists: Black Tiger Sex Machine (2016) and Dubloadz (2017) were both at Das Energi.  
CLUB: I mean this one is a no brainer! Sky SLC is the best club in the state. Thankful to them and V2 we currently (outside of this coronavirus pandemic) throw three shows a week there. Not only does this bring so many more artists (new and old) to SLC but also gives us the chance to go out weekly and dance our asses off!
SHOW: I mean my first ever EDM event was seeing Skrillex on his Fall tour. This is the last tour he went on and it was back in 2015 (I only have about 5 years of experience but let me just say I have packed A LOT into those 5 years). Skrillex is where all of this started for me. I fell in love with Skrillex first, went to his show, and then fell in love with EDM and the amazing community. You got to pay respect to the OG’s though, Skrillex is the G.O.A.T.
FESTIVAL: Electric Daisy Carnival is absolutely the top of the list for this one. I am in the process of planning my 5th trip under the Electric Sky. Aside from the mind-bending production, thousands of lasers, and larger than life stages; I have never seen a better or bigger firework show! Such a vibe. Go if you have not!
STATE: Washington is first here. I am not sure if it is just because the energy out there is unmatched, or if it’s the overwhelming amount of cute boys. Either way, sure to be a fun time! 

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Question 6: Utah has a very expansive and elaborate music industry. Without a doubt, unified and well-connected. Who and or what can you thank for where you are today?

Answer 6: I think this may be my favorite question! I tell her as often as I can but I never feel like it is enough! I also never get the opportunity to share publicly regarding this topic. The person I owe the biggest THANK YOU too is Courtney (CeeCee) Coles. Damn, where do I start? Nearly 4 years ago I took the chance and applied to market V2 events. A beautiful lady that goes by CeeCee reached out and let me know I made the team (this was after my second attempt, don’t ever give up). The energy of my Facebook had to change entirely because at the time I was a very negative person. I was able to really turn my Facebook into a completely different “person” if you will. I was able to connect with people on the things I loved and not the things I hated. I was able to find people that are into the same types of entertainment and interests that encouraged positive intent and not the opposite. It started to run much deeper than just the account, you know? Like it really helped me as a person realize the importance of harvesting the positivity out of life instead of picking apart everything that is wrong with it. I truly can never repay Courtney for the amount of greatness this opportunity has brought me. I also want to give kudos to V2 Presents. Brandon, Jeremy, Ian, Mitch, and every other person that helps create the magic deserves a big shout out! These people dedicate their lives to creating unforgettable moments for us time and time again. Utah is so damn lucky!

Question 7: Easiest and hardest parts about being a well-known promoter in a vast city like SLC? Any tips for the underdogs who are trying to climb the ranks?

Answer 7: I would say the part the comes the most natural to me is the “people” aspect of it. I have always been one to connect well with others and have a large friend group. Not necessarily the “popular” one but more along the lines of the one that had a few friends in every friend group. I would say being social and making friends are somethings that just come naturally to me. One key to being a successful promoter is by growing your network so you need to be able to make friends! On the other hand, the two (sorry y’all I couldn’t narrow down to one) most difficult parts are
A.) Remembering everyone’s names – I have a really bad memory and also work with hundreds of employees that I attempt to know on a first-name basis at my day job so overall I am really bad at remembering people’s names. Then you throw in that Utah makes the tiniest variations to names like Brennan, Brenden, Braden, Brandon, etc. and so if I do actually think I remember the name I still happen to doubt myself because I cannot remember if I am remembering the right name or a close variation that will make me look dumb if I say and then just doubt myself too much and don’t even end up using their name and just feel stupid.
B.) Continually creating engaging content – this one I mention because at first, I did not really see myself being successful at this so I did not really know where to even start. I tried my best to be original and was able to create a decent amount of engaging content. I continually tried to grow my following and work on connecting with people that were into similar festivals and artists like me. Over time, I continually increased my engagement and was moved into a more long-term social marketing role. Within this role I have promoted V2 Presents’ events for multiple years including the annual festivals Das Energi, Get Lucky, and Get Freaky. When promoting yearly events you have to find a way to really be able to individualize your content to each and every year and find unique and original ways to keep people interested in what you are sharing without being repetitive. If you are wanting to be a promoter I say BE YOU!! The only way your friends/family/following are going to be intrigued by what you are sharing is if they can really tell that it’s you behind the content. You have to stick to being yourself and promote the way that works for you and your following. BE GENUINE.
C.) Oh and one last bit of advice, no posts tagging 50 people or whatever. Getting reach is not done by tagging large amounts of people in the status but instead by creating a status that a large number of people feel inclined to share themselves onto their own feed. That is genuinely successful promoting in my eyes. 

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Question 8: What do you get out of being a vital instrument in the dance music industry? Experience? Networking? Personal Insight? Give us a breakdown of what keeps you motivated to maintain the promoter lifestyle.

Answer 8: This question is just not fair! I would say it’s impossible to be able to summarize in any amount of words the things being involved in such a passion-driven industry has done for me. Lots of different experiences have evolved from this. I have grown to play a pivotal role in entry logistics for all of V2 Presents shows that take place at The Saltair. I am an Event Staff Supervisor and additionally manage the info booth/escalations table. I have had immense local networking opportunities and am still working on more country-wide networking. Most importantly what I get out of playing a small part in the massive electronic music scene here in Utah is the gratification in sharing the scene with others. Helping find new people to attend these events and continually keeping EDM fans informed of upcoming events truly brings such an amazing sense of happiness to my life. These events are so important to myself and so many others and it is such an honor to be able to spread the word and be a brand ambassador for such a badass company (V2 Presents).

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Question 9: If you weren’t in the dance music culture, where do you believe you would be and what would you be doing? What other passions do you have?

Answer 9: Well, I think I would be dead. Not to be a Debbie-downer but I will say that before I discovered EDM I was in a really bad head-space with little hope to change that. I had gone to a few shows and I really fell in love. The first place I ever felt like I fit in. It truly was/is so beautiful. I kept telling myself something like “I need to share this with others. I need to find a way to spread the word and introduce others to our unique universe.” I saw some stuff from V2 Presents basically asking for people to apply to promote their shows via social media. I applied, did not get it the first time, tried again, and was successful! EDM got me through my darkest times and I can confidently say I wouldn’t have made it without it. If I had to choose another passion it would have to be for baking. I don’t really bake much anymore but as a kid, I loved the show Cake Boss and always wanted to be a pastry chef so that’s the closest answer I can think up haha.

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Question 10: What fun, new and exciting things can we expect from you Bridger in the upcoming weeks and months?

Answer 10: In the next few weeks you can expect me to be at home. Mostly considering the current state of the world and specific to the event industry. In the interim, my boss and I are brainstorming some new ideas to better our event staff and volunteer program. We are always collaborating and trying to find better ways to improve our events, speed up entry logistics, and find ways to create unforgettable Energi for everyone. As always I will be working on creating some creative and engaging content and maybe connect with a few new friends!

Question 11: What is your end-goal with promoting? Do you see yourself in the shoes of major promoters like Disco Donnie and or Pasqualle Rotella?

Answer 11: This one is a fun one. It’s changed over time for sure. If you asked me this my first year promoting I would have laughed! I originally got into promoting as I wanted to share the same experiences that saved my life in hopes they could change someone else’s too. It really was as simple as that. I’ve accomplished that more than I ever thought to be possible and have shared this world with more people than I ever could have imagined. Now, four years later, I do realize I may never be in the same shoes as someone like Pasqualle, but I certainly hope that I can continue to grow and develop in this industry and see how far I can go. My next goal is to be able to never again have to say “I have to go to my day job at 7 am” when finishing up working a show around 1 am. I want this to be my full-time career. If I make that happen, I’ll set a new goal and just keep the cycle going! The harder you work, the further you go. It’s an ever-growing industry with lots of room for hard-working talented individuals.

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Thank you so much, Bridger. You have exceeded our wildest expectations. We cannot thank you enough for your proactive role and dedication to our dance music community.
We will assuredly be talking more in the future and cannot wait to do a follow-up Q&A!

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