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The Women of Imagine Music Festival Spotlight - Madeleine (Maddy) Goodhand
Photo Credit: Maddy Goodhand

The Women of Imagine Music Festival Spotlight - Madeleine (Maddy) Goodhand

In short, Imagine Music Festival is a four-day aquatic adventure filled with circus acts, pool parties, transformative workshops, art, wellness classes, silent discos, field games, electrifying performances and more. If you’ve taken a look at this year’s lineup for Imagine Music Festival (IMF) in Atlanta, Georgia, you know this fest is jam-packed with talented female artists who are showing what it means to be a boss babe in the EDM world. 

I’m stoked to see every single incredible woman on the lineup this year. However, there is one industry queen who is the sole reason why myself, every artist and the entire staff and fanbase will be diving deep into our underwater wonderland this September. 

Meet Madeleine (Maddy) Goodhand; a boss babe, industry influencer and the founder of Imagine Music Festival, along with her husband, Glenn Goodhand. 

Maddy Goodhand, founder of Imagine Music Festival

Photo Credit: Maddy Goodhand

I had the privilege to sit down with Maddy and discover what it means to be one of the masterminds behind the nationally-recognized wonderland. 

Originally from Finland, Goodhand is no stranger to adventure, growing up in Switzerland, Beijing, and Hong Kong. 

“My family moved to the States to Atlanta in '99 when I was 12. I speak both Swedish and English,” says Goodhand. 

While working in the nightclub scene, Maddy and Glenn decided they wanted to break through their current mold and create shows without any creative restrictions or barriers. 

“We did not want to have any walls, we wanted a blank canvas that we could create the exact environment that we had envisioned,” says Goodhand. “We wanted to choose our staff and work with the best people in the industry. We wanted to radiate positive energy and spread light, and believed that by creating a good team and a group of individuals that believed in what we were doing we could create magic and a festival that felt different from the others.”

That’s when the aquatic fairytale was born. 

Imagine Music Festival at Night

Image Courtesy of Imagine Music Festival + Facebook

 

Imagine began as a two-day festival in the middle of Atlanta, Georgia. Goodhand shares that starting an electric wonderland didn’t come without its fair share of challenges, one of which included losing the fest’s original venue.

“[The biggest challenge was] being able to fit our big dreams into our small budget,” she explains. “Also, that first year we lost our venue four months before the event. It ended up being a blessing because we ended up at the Historic Fourth Ward Park in downtown Atlanta, which was absolutely beautiful.”

Imagine quickly began to explode in popularity, and after its second year, the fest had already outgrown its first home.

“We didn't want to move, but if we had to, we wanted to choose the biggest place we could find so we had infinite room to grow. Going to Atlanta Motor Speedway and adding camping AND a third day all in the same year made a statement to the world the type of festival we wanted to become,” states Goodhand. “It was a huge undertaking at the time, and was very challenging, but I'm glad we took the leap and pulled it off.”

Imagine Music Festival at the Speedway

Image Courtesy of Imagine Music Festival + Facebook

 

The festival is independently operated by the Goodhands, with help from their hand-selected team members rallying beside them. 

Maddy says that herself, Glenn, and the rest of the Imagine team have spent each year improving the festival’s production, making it more and more memorable for guests. 

“We keep a close ear to the ground and are always asking our guests and friends in the community how we can improve...This constant tweaking and paying attention to what our guests want, we feel, has led us to experience such rapid growth,” states Goodhand. 

This year, the festival is expected to be the most mystical adventure yet, with new themes and experiences to elevate the underwater world to the next level.

“This year we have introduced the theme “What Lies Deep at the Bottom of the Ocean” inspired by Seven Lions track, "Ocean." Our stage designs and festival decor are playing off the theme which is super cool,” shares Goodhand. “We have also switched up the layout and are adding some fun new areas with different fun things like pop up performances, vendors, themed bars, and games. We are also working closely with the artists to develop some really neat Meet & Greet opportunities and new VIP experiences.” 

Goodhand adds that while it hasn’t always been easy to earn respect as a young woman in what she describes as, “a man’s world,” she is using her platform as a successful woman in the industry to boost her fellow females.

“When I have the opportunity to talk to our entire staff and inspire other young women to be in a leadership position, it’s very rewarding as I feel I have broken through the struggle,” she says.

In addition to promoting strong female staff, Goodhand is showcasing the fierce female talent in the industry through this year’s stellar lineup. 

“The lineup is awesome, [I] can't wait to see our stacked female lineup with Rezz, Alison Wonderland, Leah Culver, Anna Lunoe, Nora En Pure,” shares Goodhand. “And of course I'm excited for Diplo and Tipper.”

(If you haven’t had a chance to read all about how Leah Culver plans to bring the house down this year at IMF, you can do so here). 

Goodhand says that she is thrilled to see the fest come together this year, and describes the entire experience as “humbling and exciting.” 

“I feel like I'm watching this magical moment in the universe - to see a vision come to life and so many smiling faces and guests having the time of their [lives],” she explains. “I'm proud of us [for] being a homegrown, independent festival and being compared to the biggest festivals in the world. Personally, I'm proud of overcoming many challenges and being able to grow from those experiences. I think its a mutual pride we share with our whole community.” 

Confetti Falling at Imagine Music Festival

Image Courtesy of Imagine Music Festival + Facebook

 

Goodhand adds that she sees no limitations to what Imagine may become in the future.

“We are still in our early stages, so the possibilities are really endless for where we can go and the type of festival we will become,” she states. 

Tickets to Imagine are selling out fast! Join me and thousands of other underwater dreamers as we express our inner mermaid realness on September 19 - 22, 2019. Grab your tickets here.

Psst...want to know what lies deep at the bottom of the ocean? Discover the magic for yourself here: 

TAGS: mariann roberts, Lifestyle & Culture,



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