Behind The Brand: Vander / Corals | Soundspace

Behind The Brand: Vander / Corals

Behind The Brand: Vander / Corals

Wildfires, mass flooding, and Covid-19 are just a few of the devastating events we’ve had to face over the past two years, and if there’s one thing to learn from those experiences, it’s that the planet isn’t happy with our consumer-driven way of life.

An increasingly sustainable approach to living is more important now than maybe any time in our history, and like any form of meaningful change, it starts at the most basic level.

One nightlife brand who want to push for change is Amsterdam-based club promotion Corals, who alongside tackling plastic waste and environmental sustainability, want to spread awareness of the impact we have on our surroundings.

We welcome Corals co-founder Vander to our Behind The Series series this month, to chat about the struggles of launching an eco-conscious party, what goals him and his team have for the near future, and what the job actually entails.

What made you want to launch Corals in the first place, do you remember the moment when the idea first came to you?

Corals came to me as a matter of manifestation in 2019 when a good friend of mine reached out, who was running the programming of a new club in Amsterdam called Ponton. He offered me to have a residency there, and I said yes without hesitation.

I always dreamt about making my own events, growing a brand and a community so I decided to step up this ‘residency’ opportunity by creating a concept.

Since the venue was next to the water, and I am super connected to the beach, I thought to do something related to it. After hours of research, I ended up looking at Corals under the water, how beautiful they are, and everything clicked.

And what were some of the biggest hurdles you faced at the very beginning?

Our biggest hurdle at the beginning was to create a name for ourselves and to make people dance on a Sunday afternoon. It was hard because we created a new brand, also the club was new and super far from where we normally go. There was a lot of uncertainties, but in the end it was perfect!

What does a typical day in the office look like?

Well, to be honest, our office is the composition of a few WhatsApp groups – very modern lol. It’s designed in a way that we can all live our lives without the ‘corporate’ feeling. I’m always in my studio making music and I wouldn’t give that away, so I don’t expect my team to do it. Passion first, work second.

We’ve learned to trust each other while working remotely and we’ve become very dynamic and active. One day you can have our deco team scouting new venues while me, my partner Sebaas and my manager Taylor are doing all the administrative work such as contacting bookers, negotiating for sound systems, and posting on social media etc.

The sustainability aspect of your approach, what exactly makes a brand sustainable, in comparison to one which isn’t?

When it comes to events, I believe sustainability comes from having some clear values regarding environmental impact and doing everything in your power to reduce waste. In our case we are in control of choosing the venue we want to work with and choosing the materials we use to decorate. We only work with venues who are aligned with our sustainable values and won’t make it a big deal if we ask to not have plastic glasses at our events, for example.

Another aspect is that we re-use all our decorations at each party, you can see the pieces grow and adapt over time, we still have decor from our first party. Which I believe is something beautiful to see, it’s like watching a baby grow. We also create decorations with plastic waste in order to create an impact with our community. Which is my last point here, I think it’s our duty to educate and keep communicating on the impact our decisions on the world.

And how has the city of Amsterdam supported your efforts so far?

So far so good, I am very grateful with the people in the city and everyone who has supported us. Our comeback event sold out in the first day without even announcing a line-up. This said a lot about the strength of the community, people really trust us. After that response, we decided to get a bigger place because we also love our community and want to give the best we can.

What are some of your biggest goals for the rest of 2021?

I took 2020 as a year of reflection and a lot of planning so 2021 is about execution and getting to the next level. My biggest goal is to solidify my team, double my DJ bookings across the globe, and finish my new “live” performance.

What’s the worst job you had before working as a promoter?

Working as a promoter – lol.

And lastly, what’s your favourite track at the moment, regardless of style or genre?

Visual Distortion of Reality by Whitesquare – I’ve also launched a new Spotify playlist of my favourite tracks you can follow.