A couple of times now, I’ve written about how live instrumentation is going to be the next big thing in electronic music. It easily bridges the gap between the traditional, instrumental style of music and the newer, electronically enhanced method of playing out at big festivals. Lots of acts have been doing it for ages already, consider Die Antwoord, Beats Antique and The Crystal Method. Others are beginning to jump on the trend, like Madeon, Porter Robinson and Krewella. Having a DJ up on the decks jumping around is a lot of fun to look at, but nothing will ever compare to the live performance value of real instruments.
One artist in particular went in the opposite direction. Having started her career in spite of America’s Got Talent, Lindsey Stirling has made a name for herself as the electronic violinist. Her on-stage persona oozes charisma and she has the skill to back it up. I caught her show in Los Angeles last year and it absolutely blew me away; I swear to God, I think I actually cried a little bit.
This year, I’m looking forward to seeing her again at an even bigger venue, the Greek Theater in Los Angeles. Before I get to the show however, I just had to ask Lindsey some questions.
What were your feelings when you started transitioning from small club-type shows into the larger, more extravagant festivals? Did you feel like you needed to step the game up a little?
Absolutely. I’ve always tried to make my show feel bigger than the size [of the] venue that I was playing. Every tour gets bigger and I take it as an opportunity to bring more of my creative ideas to life. I also try to make every tour have something new that my fans haven’t seen me do yet.
Aside from the usual American cities, you’re hitting a lot of South American and European cities on this tour, and even one stop in Turkey. Do you think that those abroad connect with your music in different ways, or is music sort of the “great communicator”, as RHCP put it?
Since my music is mostly instrumental it is amazing to see it connect with people all over the globe. They don’t view it as American music but it’s music that they can experience without the language barrier.
I saw you on your last tour stop in Los Angeles last year, and aside from the musical aspect, there was a lot of choreography and movement on stage. How much time is devoted just to the dancing, and do you have a choreographer touring with you?
I mostly just dance on stage once I have the tour learned but I lock myself in dance rehearsals for a solid 2 weeks in order to learn the choreography.
Similarly, there are times during your show when you get to sit down and relax a bit, as in during your acoustic renditions or your “Legend Of Zelda” medley. Do you use this time to recuperate and get your energy back?
For sure. It’s a pretty exhausting and physically demanding show. Not only do I have to dance and have sharp big movements but I have to exercise a lot of control in order to play. So that more relaxed section of the show has two purposes: to add diversity to the show and to give me a much needed rest.
Violin is, of course, your main instrument. Have you ever had a desire to learn a different string instrument, or another instrument altogether? Have you actually learned any of those instruments?
Someday I want to learn piano.
There is a lot of emotion and a great sense of connectivity between you and your fans at the shows. I know that you absolutely adore them and are thankful for their support. If money wasn’t an issue, what might you do to give back to the fans?
I try to connect with my fans through many different ways: social media, pre show meet and greets and in my performances I try to look into the eyes of individuals and connect on a one on one basis. The biggest thing that keeps me from my fans is time. I would love it if I could actually get to know more of them but unfortunately, there is not enough of me and of time for me to really know them all.
Your first breakout hit was “Crystallize” which featured elements of dubstep. Your general sound is a mixture of classical and electronic. You’ve had producers help with your tracks, have you ever tried taking up some of the production duties yourself?
No, but I am always there with the producers writing and helping them create the backtrack because I want the tracks to feel and express specific emotions.
Do you have any favorite electronic artists? I know that Kill Paris helped produce on “Heist” from Shatter Me.
I love Zedd, Skrillex and Nero.
Do you have any opinions on the current state of EDM culture?
I wish that there was more performance in electronic music. I feel like a lot of EDM shows are pretty much light shows and I wish there was more live musicality happening.
Will we be hearing new music on this tour? Is there a third album in the works?
Yes, I’ll be playing some new songs that I am really excited about. I have not started working on my new album but I will be working on that in the fall.
As an extremely multi-talented individual, what would you love to try getting into (hobbies, sports, etc.) that you haven’t quite had the time for, due to touring, music or otherwise?
I love rock climbing, I think it would be fun do yoga, I would love to learn how to play piano, I’d love to learn more about producing music.
For everything else, visit her website.