[INDUSTRY CATCH UP] RUDEE NIK
(rudee nik photo cred: alec donnell luna)
(vertigo photo cred: marko kovacevic)
Vertigo has steadily become a fixture in Toronto's electronic dance music scene over the past year, providing an afterhours home for local talent, internationally-known bookings and lovers of house and techno. It's Vertigo's one year anniversary this weekend and I caught up with Vertigo maestro (and manager) Rudee Nik to learn more about him, the club, his philosophy on bookings, underground culture and more. Check out our catch up here!
When did you get into the industry and in what capacity have you been involved?
I believe it all started with a passion to find music outside of what was on the radio in the late 90’s. I discovered house music and the emerging Toronto rave scene. After a very short time of shakin' my ass on the dance-floor, I quickly figured out that I'd much rather be playing the records for the crowd and be behind the scenes, involved with the events. DJ’ing led to the nightclub business where I helped run The Basement from 2008-2013 (an intimate underground nightclub located at Queen & Bathurst), and after a short hiatus from clubland we came back with Vertigo in September 2017. I help with the overall running of the venue and programming of the nights, and I’m one of the main DJ residents at the club.
(photo cred: alec donnell luna/ded agency)
How important is underground culture, and what in your opinion makes up underground culture?
I think the underground culture is made up of people who enjoy and share one common denominator: higher order of critical and deeper thinking in music, art and ideas. In our case, house and techno are synonymous with the underground. The music creates the culture.
(photo cred: marko kovacevic)
Can you tell us about the venue itself and what makes it unique?
Firstly, the venue is something special: the exposed brick (we’ve been told it has a very Montreal-esque vibe to it) and the unique layout really create a cool underground, moody atmosphere. When we discovered the space, we were really in awe of its character. We also have our friendly, sociable, trustworthy security and staff to make sure we have a safe and clean environment, our diverse, respectful, openminded clientele, and of course 4AM espressos! We have a complimentary coffee bar espresso service that runs all night!
(photo cred: marko kovacevic)
Can you talk to us about the programming philosophy or intention behind the artists you book and the sound you're interested in bringing to the venue?
House and techno! There are currently so many great DJ’s in Toronto, it only made sense to program our weekly scheduling with them in mind. Our bigger DJ showcases have included Kenny Glasgow, Sydney Blu and we hosted Nathan Barato & Carlo Lio for their Rawthentic New Years Eve event.
We’re coming up on our one year anniversary and we’ve really been spoiled with the talent that has graced our decks.
Thanks, Rudee, for taking the time to talk with us. Wishing you and Vertigo an amazing first year anniversary weekend!
Check out what Vertigo has on deck next (click on the flyer for link to event info):