Foundation Fridays at Toika Lounge have become a staple event for trance lovers in Toronto. Over the past few months, Ozmozis Productions has been working hard to mix the finest in rising talent with the resilient Toronto trance community. With a non-pretentious, laid back environment, the cozy venue allows for an intimate experience of music and fun between the DJs and their fans.
On Friday, November 30th, Ozmozis partnered with Toronto’s own DJ/Producer Arnej to turn the night into a fundraiser in support of the Canadian Cancer Society. Those who follow Arnej know that a few months ago, he regretfully announced the diagnosis of his father’s lung cancer. His fan base has been active in showing support and sending love to Arnej through this tough time via tweets, Facebook posts and more. In response to the situation, Arnej teamed up with Ozmozis to host #Dance4aCure, an EDM event of which all proceeds would be donated to the Canadian Cancer Society. #Dance4aCure created a lot of buzz on the web as artists across the world showed support, including a shout-out from Markus Schulz on his weekly Global DJ Broadcast. We, at EDM TOR, were touched by the initiative and made it a point to be there with bells on.
That night, the cover charge was open for donation, so I dropped a $20 bill into a box and proceeded into the club. It was approximately 11:45pm when I arrived and there was already a crowd of people around the bar and on the dance floor. While resident DJ, Mr. Morton, was on decks, I was greeted with familiar faces around the bar. On three different occasions I found myself in conversations full of praise for Mr. Morton, including comments like “you can’t go wrong with Morty” and “he keeps getting better and better every time I see him.” Since the start of Foundation Fridays, he has won the hearts of this local crowd, sweeping them off their feet with a unique sound that always sets the mood just right for the rest of the night. He recently played an incredible set at Canada’s first Gatecrasher event back in November, which definitely put this local talent on the map. Next time you attend a Foundation Friday event, be sure to arrive early to experience the sounds of Mr. Morton.
Before it was his turn to spin, Arnej was mingling with the crowd, taking pictures with fans and thanking friends for showing their support. He took over the decks around 12:30am and immediately had people all around the club moving to the beat. It was 12:45am when Arnej took the mic and thanked the crowd for being there. He then made a surprise announcement that Oz, the founder of Ozmozis Productions who is well-known for his silky, long locks, would be shaving his head to donate his hair to Angel Hair for Kids – Program of a Child’s Voice Foundation. Immediately a stool was brought to the front of the dance floor and hair- stylist Dasha Senko started working on Oz’s hair. A crowd formed around him and people took videos and photos as Oz’s signature ‘do was disappearing in front of their eyes. After 15 minutes, a round of cheers was heard – Oz’s hair was ready for donation and the party continued.
Arnej’s set was exactly what you’d expect from this rising star, whose recent productions have been released on record labels like Black Hole Recordings and Coldharbour Recordings while being supported by legends in the industry, all around the world. Arnej has got a deep and dark sound that translates beautifully into progressive trance music that you don’t just hear, but you feel rather intensely. His track selection that night was absolutely on point with the music he creates. We heard massive tracks like Skytech’s What’s Wrong, W&W’s new track Lift Off, Beat Service’s Fortuna and Outsider, Orjan Nilsen’s Between the Rays, and Cosmic Gate’s Fire Wire, just to name a few. Of course the dance floor was absolutely crazy when Arnej dropped his Arnej Re-Acidification remix of W&W’s Operation AK47, which was followed by Khomha’s Dark Knight and the collaboration of Markus Schulz and Ferry Corsten, Loops N Tings. Between Arnej’s enthusiasm on the decks, the excitement of Oz’s new look, and the incredible set that was being played, there was never a dull moment during the night. It was just after 3am when Arnej handed the decks back over to Mr. Morton who continued with the dark progressive trance sound and played a little back-to-back with Arnej. Nearing 3:30am mark, a few hardcore fans will were still left standing. At this point Arnej already had is jacket on but continued to play for his fans right until 3:45am, when the party officially ended.
When all totals were tallied, Arnej, in partnership with Ozmozis productions, raised $1,600 to donate to The Canadian Cancer Society. We are incredibly proud of the Toronto trance community for coming out to support Arnej in his journey to overcome what must be an overwhelming time in his life.
I suggest you keep your eye on Arnej. His name is becoming well-known all around the world and with recent releases like The Second Coming and People Want To Be Needed on Coldharbour Recordings, my prediction is that he’ll rise to fame sooner than we can say the words.
We’d like to congratulate Arnej and Ozmozis for the success of #Dance4aCure, and if you are a trance fan, we suggest you check out the Ozmozis website for upcoming trance events the city.
See you at the next one!
Anjali Handa – EDM TOR