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Following Terminal V’s first-ever three-day weekender event at Halloween, Simon McGrath and Derek Martin, directors of Scottish promoter EE Live, tell Access how they turned the indie Edinburgh event into one of the largest electronic music festivals in Europe.

Derek Martin (left) and Simon McGrath (right)

EE Live has grown Terminal V from a single-room warehouse event with 2,500 people in attendance in 2017, to now bringing more than 15,000 music fans to Terminal V Halloween and 40,000 at the ever-expanding Terminal V: Festival at Easter.

How was this year’s event different to previous years?

DM: It was a new model for Halloween this year. We ran a series of single main arena shows over the weekend packaged up into our Halloween Trilogy concept. This allowed us to focus on a different vibe each day and offer something different than what you would expect at our festival here in Edinburgh.

Production is always such an important part of Terminal V events; our new Halloween model allowed us to do something pretty special in that main arena for a 6,000-capacity show each day.

Halloween in general is such a big date for people’s social calendars now, more so than even NYE arguably. So we like to embrace the full Halloween and fun aspect which we hope is evident from our site design, added features and the look and feel of the event.

What are your plans for the future?

SM: We’re currently finalising the line-up and plans for Terminal V Festival 2024. this is the 10th edition of Terminal V in Edinburgh since we launched back in April 2017, so it feels like a special one for sure.

Our festival makes use of all the halls and warehouses at the venue alongside the outdoor surrounding areas which gives us a unique hybrid experience with a mixture of indoor and outdoors across the festival site.

Apart from that, we recently launched our label, Terminal V Records which has featured a wide range of fresh global and homegrown artists from Scotland, Colombia, Germany and Australia. We will be picking up our international plans very soon.

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How did you bounce back from the pandemic?

SM: We came out the back of the pandemic with a larger two-day festival in Edinburgh. After rescheduling numerous times, we took advantage of the time away to develop the brand and fine tune many areas of the events we do.

This included further developing our production to the standard we wanted it to be at. This is now a staple part of Terminal V, raising the brand profile and awareness globally.

How has the event boosted the Edinburgh live events scene?

DM: Without a doubt it has significantly boosted the Edinburgh scene and Scotland wide too. Our production companies and suppliers we work with relish a Terminal V event with our unique, challenging production ideas, bespoke stage designs and requirements throughout the year. We have a great relationship with the event supply industry across the board and I’m sure our contribution is welcomed. Our events would not be possible without their expertise and resources.

Many of the young Scottish techno artists coming through now have been inspired by attending or working at Terminal V over the last six years. Getting to see some of the iconic artists we bring to Edinburgh leaves a lasting impression on tomorrow’s future Scottish DJs and producers.

For Terminal V festival especially, having five stages and a large festival site gives us the opportunity to work with so many different companies and suppliers which is a massive boost to the Scottish events supply trade.

Terminal V suppliers:

  • Inc
  • Catalyst
  • FE Audio
  • Coloursound
  • Showtek

Terminal V was recently voted the Best Festival in the UK at DJ Mag’s Best of British Awards 2023. The event was nominated alongside AVA Festival, Waterworks Festival, We Out Here Festival, and Bassfest Summer Festival.

Terminal V 2024 will take place from 13-14 April at The Royal Highland Centre & Showground.