pasquale rotella

This isn’t the last of my Beyond Wonderland spam but I think this will be the most meaningful.

My first massive was Pop: The Dream 360 at Oracle Arena in Oakland. There I tried Molly for the first time. Honestly, I enjoyed it. I continued to roll after that event and was having the time of my life from what it seemed. Not so long after (maybe about a month), my parents somehow found out. I wasn’t allowed to go out anywhere for a while. No coffee with friends, no shopping, not even going to friends houses just to study. It was literally home, school, and work.

Fast forward to Beyond Wonderland. I bought my ticket when my parents started letting me go out again. I was so excited to get back with the community I love so much. I was planning to roll this weekend until my mom said to me “Don’t make me one of those parents that have to make you take a drug test.” So I spent the whole weekend sober. At first I was a little angry but now I couldn’t be more thankful that this happened. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always been about the music. Molly heightens the experience for some and that’s exactly what it did for me back in April. My first music festival just made me realize how much I was in it for the music and Pasquale’s idea of experience. Everywhere I turned there was something that made me smile. Everything was beautiful.

It was in the middle of Benny Benassi’s set that I realized how thankful I am for getting caught. Not many people can say that. Without my parents, I wouldn’t have felt such an emotional and spiritual connection at Beyond. I cried when I heard “Dance the Pain Away.” I thought about my parents, my friends, my sisters, the people who make insomniac events possible for us and myself. I’m thankful for all of this. I’m thankful for the people that keep P.L.U.R. alive, Pasquale for creating such beautiful events, the positive influences in my life, and so much more.

I’m proud to say that I’m a sober raver. I’m proud to say that EDM can touch every piece of my body and make me feel a natural high. I’ve never felt the emotions I went through at Beyond. I was speechless half the time. There were times where I was completely frozen just smiling at the stage and thinking to myself “Damn, how is it possible that music can affect you this way? How is it that in this moment I’m feeling what seems to be true happiness?”

Beyond Wonderland Bay Area has changed me and has turned me into a better person than I was walking through the gates for the first time and I couldn’t be any more thankful. Thank you so much, Pasquale. I can now say you’re one of my heroes.