Entertainment

New startup CLSR on why small boutique music events are here to stay

The highly experienced founder duo has seen it all — now they want to add something new to the entertainment industry.
By JOHAN MAGNUSSON
June 16, 2021

Karl Ohlsén Pettersson has been running concerts, festivals, and music events more or less his entire life. He was also one of the initiators of Summerburst in 2011 that since has grown to become one of the leading European dance music festivals. Mille Yousefali has been at the helm of a bunch of Stockholm’s leading nightclubs for more than two decades. 

Together, they were about to launch CLSR a year ago. And even though the pandemic changed their plans, the timing now is perhaps better than ever. They will start small and intimate with the goal to grow over time.

— We create small boutique music events, held at unusual and amazing locations with carefully selected artists. It’s really nothing quite like it. It’s fun and playful, and something new in the music events space, Ohlsén Pettersson tells.

What’s the main difference between regular concerts and your concept?

— We are striving to exist outside of regular arenas, and want to be a bit more ambitious when selecting our venues, to add magic to the concept. We do share a lot with regular concerts, but we try to add something different.

In your initial statement, you mentioned that your concept is ”far away from concerts in sports arenas”. What’s wrong with them?

— It not that they are wrong, says Ohlsén Pettersson — they are fantastic spaces that works great for many things. But if you want to curate smaller, more intimate music gatherings, they are not the place for this concept. We’ve tried to make arenas personal. It’s difficult.

With your comprehensive experience, what kind of post-pandemic entertainment industry will there be? 

— We sure hope and believe that people, in due time, will want to dive in and enjoy physical events again. It sure seems so, when we talk to people and see how people express themselves online. Digital movement will also surely stick around, there have been many fantastic launches within digital experiences, but it could be that the future is hybrid. Experiencing a physical music event is something that we do believe is very close to people’s soul, and that will have a big comeback, the duo shares.

Will the industry change? And what will remain the same?

— Many big music events and festivals define us as humans, they have more purposes than one. That will not change. There might be change in the tech surrounding it though, which is not bad, says Yousefali.

CLSR’s registration is open, with the first event date, artist, and location to be revealed within a week.

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