Yann Pissenem Talks Ushuaia

Posted on September 27, 2014

Words: Lena Kochetkova.

Ushuaïa today is the biggest and the most famous purveyor of the EDM sound in Ibiza. However, as the season draws to a close, it looks like the last events we will be able to catch on this dancefloor are pretty much underground: ANTS closing party on September 27 with Andrea Oliva b2b Uner, Deetron, Los Suruba, Tania Vulcano and Tapesh; La Familia on September 28 with Joris Voorn, Nic Fanciulli, Hot Since 82, Mark Fanciulli, Tom Trago and Raul Rodriguez and the Ushuaïa closing on October 4 with a marathon 12-hours set by Marco Carola. The problem of keeping a proper balance between different kinds of sound and diverse formats of parties has been urgent for Ibiza in the last few seasons, but the infamous party hotel has solved it flawlessly by finding an ideal proportion this summer – and we had a chance to talk about this with Yann Pissenem, the mastermind behind the Ushuaïa party programme and the man whom we owe for the launch of ANTS, one of the most beloved underground open airs of the last two years.

Yann-1

Ushuaia Closing Party

Ushuaia Closing Party

Buy tickets for the Ushuaia Closing Party from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy tickets for Ushuaia from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.

How would you assess season 2014 for Ushuaïa? Do you have any especially memorable stories to tell?
We had a really good season, in terms of numbers and the affluence of the public it was the best summer we’ve had in Ushuaïa in the four years of its existence. Speaking about stories, I’d like to tell you the one of Snoop Dogg’s concert at Ushuaïa. He was coming with a regular flight line, and his flight was cancelled. Using a normal airline to bring him from Frankfurt to Ibiza was simply out of question because of the tempest, so we had to find a private jet company as fast as possible. To make things worse, it was Friday midday and a bank holiday in Spain. Ok, we found the company, and we tried to pay for the jet with a credit card – and it was impossible, because of Swiss laws. We tried all the imaginable transfers and other ways of payment, and Snoop Dogg was sitting in the private jet for four hours, waiting! We had to work hard during several hours to find a solution to the situation, and in the end it was sorted out. It was for sure one of the biggest and the most intense moments of the season.

Ushuaïa is first and foremost associated with EDM sound, even though ANTS is a very successful underground party. Would you like to make the music policy of the venue more diverse in the next few years, or is it your plan to remain the purveyor of big room commercial house?
I think we needed to find a good balance between commercial and underground parties, and we found it this year. ANTS is a totally underground party, designed to showcase the emerging underground sound and the great DJs who play it. Last year we made a mistake by overdoing on the underground side, but we can’t be blamed for it: last winter everyone on the island believed that underground sound was ready to compete face-to-face with big EDM sound. Last season we saw a lot of new underground nights popping up, including our own Thursdays by Loco Dice, in addition to the already established names like Cocoon, Circoloco, Enter, Solomun, Sankeys… The island was really full of underground music, and the bubble exploded. We did too many underground parties compared to commercial ones, and in the end commercial public will always be more numerous: people are more used to commercial music because they hear it on the radio. So we all had to step back, and this year there was much more reason and control in programming new nights on the island. In my case, I came back with only one big underground event, which was ANTS, the rest was more commercial, and it worked for us like that really well. Next summer we can maybe add another cool underground night and keep a steady balance of 5 commercial events + 2 more forward-thinking. In the end, it’s all about business, and we need to maintain a healthy proportion. If I want to do a cool underground party, I can do it in my garage with 50 friends and great music. But if we want to run Ushuaïa as a business, we need to keep it rentable, I have to be responsible to my business partners. We need to create the best product, to cater for our public in the best way, and to secure the best numbers possible.

Ants The Mix 2014

Which young DJ talents that Ushuaïa has discovered and nurtured are you most proud of?
I’m not sure if we helped to discover any artist, but we definitely try to push the great emerging talents and to help them by providing infrastructure and a platform to start flying, so to say. I would like to mention Andrea Oliva for sure: he is doing a great job and he is growing a lot, he plays amazing sets, and I’m sure he is on the right way to become a big artist.

What are your plans for Hard Rock Hotel and Ushuaïa Tower for next season?
We will be doing live concerts in Hard Rock like this year, but of course the line-ups will be completely new. In Ushuaïa Tower, again just like this season, we will be doing some parties on the roof and a few events downstairs, but it’s not going to be too big.

How did you come up with the idea of booking Marco Carola for a marathon set on Ushuaïa closing?
Marco is the man of the year in Ibiza. He will be a great present for everyone who comes for the closing parties, which are mostly underground – just look at the line-ups of Amnesia, Space and even Blue Marlin Ibiza… Booking Marco was a big addition to the good image of Ushuaïa, and it created a win-win situation for all of us by securing a great closing party. Marco is really strong right now, he plays great music, last year he did DC10 closing party, and for us it’s an honour to have him at Ushuaïa. Just imagine, a 12-hours set will be so crazy! I’m really proud and happy about that.

Yann Ushuaia

Ushuaia Closing Party

Ushuaia Closing Party

Buy tickets for the Ushuaia Closing Party from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy tickets for Ushuaia from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.

Speaking about brand expansion, are you planning to make ANTS parties around the world in winter?
Yes, we’re planning a few things outside Ibiza. With ANTS we are going to do Rome, probably it will be New Year’s Eve, and we’ll do Miami for sure.

Ushuaïa is a hotel where the guests can find everything they need: comfortable and stylish rooms, parties with the best DJs in the world, amazing restaurants and bars, beach club, sea, swimming pool, shop and lots of entertainment. Is it your aim to create an environment where the guests can spend the whole time of their Ibiza trip without feeling bored and without feeling the necessity to go anywhere else?
The point is to create an amusement park for adults, where one can have literally everything, as you say: restaurants, clubs, daytime parties, little bars, beach clubs… We try to deliver to our clients the best service and the best experience at any moment of day and night. And for sure, by next season we’re going to increase some facilities, we’re going to introduce some changes in Ushuaïa Club and the Tower as well. Last year, we did a new VIP in the club, by next summer we will again come up with some new things and a few surprises.

Ushuaia

What is the global mission of Ushuaïa?
We try to deliver a show of the best quality, to offer a bigger experience rather than just a club, to create an electronic adventure where all the elements are synchronized in order to bring you into a fairytale from the very moment when you pass through the door. Our main goal is to help people have a great time and forget all the bad moments they might have in their lives: if they come to Ushuaïa and spend six hours there, during this time they will not be thinking of their family problems, or work problems, or whatever problems they may have. Smile on every face is our main goal and the main reward for the work we’re doing.

What were the happiest moments you had in Ushuaïa this summer – not from a professional, but from a personal viewpoint?
We had quite a few great moments in Ushuaïa this summer… Coming back to what we started with, I must say I enjoyed the time spent with Snoop Dogg both on stage and backstage. We established a super cool relationship from the very beginning, when I saw him going out of the plane, then we spoke for many hours after his show, and it was such a great day!

Ushuaia
Snoop Dogg
Yann Ushuaia
Ibiza 2014 with Essential Ibiza www.essentialibiza.com Photograph by Nic Click

Ushuaia Closing Party

Ushuaia Closing Party

Buy tickets for the Ushuaia Closing Party from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy Ushuaia Tickets

Buy tickets for Ushuaia from Essential Ibiza and enjoy great discounts and queue jump entry.