Provided exclusively to Billboard, the Phase 1 leg's tour dates range from college markets like Albany and Ann Arbor to such major U.S. cities as Chicago and Philadelphia, as well as international stops in Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Puerto Rico.
Billboard can also exclusively report that Bingo Players will headline the Fresno show on March 7th and Dillon Francis will headline the Austin stop on April 25th. The tour will kick off Jan. 17th with Diplo in East Lansing, Mich., and feature the likes of DVBBS, Flosstradamus, David Solano and more, as well as the "Paint Factory" stage structure first seen at Life in Color Miami.
Billboard checked in with Life in Color founder Sebastian Solano to discuss the brand's rise from a college party in 2006 to today's trans-national EDM institution.
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Billboard: Where did the concept behind LIC come from?
Sebastian Solano: When myself and the cofounders were all going to college together at Florida State, the fraternities and sororities were throwing these paint parties called Dayglo. We attended one and thought it was the most amazing experience we'd ever encountered at a party, and we had a vision of touring this concept through all the colleges and one day turning it into a worldwide event. Seven years later, here we are in 40+ countries doing shows from 5,000 to 50,000 people.
How did LIC grow from a college events company into the major brand it is today?
I think after we conquered the college market, we realized we could create a lot more with this concept. We knew LIC was bigger than just a college event and our team was capable of taking this brand worldwide. We decided to scale down on the amount of college events and focus more on the bigger shows. We switched our focus from doing college shows to doing both college markets and all the major cities in America. We grew our events not only in attendance but also in production quality and talent booked. We also invested over seven figures in R&D to develop new paint shooting technology and grow our show from a paint party to a full-scale spectacle that is now talked about in the same sentence as the biggest EDM brands in the world.
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How has the SFX acquisition changed LIC?
It has made us a much more professional and efficient company. As any young fast growing company, we were lacking the infrastructure needed to keep up with our massive growth and expansion. Since SFX, we have expanded into 40+ countries worldwide and are now selling more than 600,000 tickets a year. I believe there are no more than one or two other EDM brands selling this many tickets worldwide.
What made you realize LIC was ready for a world tour?
From the demand and success in our international shows. We get calls from promoters from everywhere in the world about wanting to produce LIC in their markets. From the Americas, to Asia, Australia and Europe, we have plans to be dominant in every corner of the world.
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How will your approach to LIC programming differ between domestic and foreign markets? What are the challenges and opportunities?
It is definitely challenging to deal with the logistics and limitations of producing a show and keeping it to the standard and consistency we want for LIC. We have weekends where we are producing our show on three or four different continents. It took us a long time to be able to do this, but we are proud to say we are capable of producing LIC in different parts of the world and still blowing our fans away. Our team works very hard and sometimes they spend months on the road in countries where they don't speak the language without being able to see their families. But all these sacrifices are why we are now a globally recognized brand.
What does the future hold for LIC?
We want to reinvent ourselves every couple of years and make sure we stay ahead of the curve. The way the market is right now, the weak brands are starting to suffer from saturation and only the strong brands are succeeding. We are on pace to sell over one million tickets world wide by 2016, and I want to be the first brand to do this. We also want LIC to be seen as a life style brand, as we want to influence our fans to live their life in color and enjoy every minute of it. We want to interact with them 365 days of the year as they are our inspiration to keep going.
Life in Color Tour Dates (Phase One):
1/17 East Lansing, MI Lansing Center - UNLEASH Show w/ Diplo
2/6 Lincoln, NE Pinnacle Bank Arena
2/7 Denver, CO Denver Mart
2/14 Rio De Janeiro, BR Marina Da Gloria - UNLEASH Show
2/16 Uberlandia, BR Estancionamento Castelli Master - UNLEASH Show
3/7 Fresno, CA Fresno Convention Center
3/7 Sacramento, CA Cal Expo
3/13 Buenos Aires, AR Mandarine Park
3/27 Cecepcion, CL Sur Activo
3/28 Santiago, CL Espacio Reisco
4/10 Rochester, NY Main Street Armory
4/11 Ann Arbor, MI The Convention Center - Eastern Michigan University
4/11 Houston, TX Minute Maid Park Lot C
4/11 Philadelphia, PA Festival Pier
4/15 Kingston, RI Ryan Center
4/17 Tulsa, OK Cox Business Center
4/17 Normal, IL The Corn Crib
4/18 Chicago, IL TBA
4/24 Hartford, CT XL Center
4/25 Austin, TX Carson Creek Ranch
4/25 Albany, NY TCU Center
4/25 Columbia, MO Midway Expo Center
4/25 San Diego, CA TBA
5/2 Tucson, AZ The Slaughter House
5/16 Cleveland, OH Dock 32 @ The William Mather Ship (Behind First Energy Stadium)
TBD Seattle/Tacoma, WA TBD
TBD San Juan, PR TBD