MGMT at Frost Amphitheater, Stanford, CA, April 2013

Large-scale concerts are exercises in experience design; the music itself is just a small component of the overall event. The buildup, the community, the accessibility, the ease of navigation, the atmosphere of the venue - these are what make an experience truly special. They're also the greatest challenges, as they must appeal to a large, diverse, and often fickle crowd.

As I organized events with the Stanford Concert Network, I looked to festivals like Coachella and Burning Man for design inspiration. The former, for example, delivers tickets in beautiful lacquered boxes that would make Apple envious. The latter facilitates year-round meet-ups for its community members around the world. Details like these are what inspire life-long customers who return year after year, long after the novelty of the event has expired, and this is the approach to experience design that I employ in all of my work.

Crowd at Frost Amphitheater, April 2012