Following the first international Night Mayor Summit in Amsterdam in 2016, Gather Festival has invited Amsterdam Night Mayor Mirik Milan to host the Nordic Night Mayor Summit. A four-hour conference packed with engaging expert sessions led by international nightlife experts. The sessions are a great way to get into the center of international night culture. In three rounds of 45 minutes you will be actively thinking and working with the experts to gather insights on topics like creative and cultural spaces, government policies and social structures in nightlife. The key learnings from the expert session will be recapped by Mirik Milan at the end of the conference.

Expert Session: creative and cultural space
Lutz Leichsenring (Creative Footprint, Club Commission Berlin)
Dimitri Hegeman (Happy Locals, Tresor Berlin, Detroit-Berlin Connection)

Moderator: Ella Overkleeft

Many cities deal with gentrification. The negative effects are putting pressure on creative and cultural spaces. The Creative Footprint, founded by Lutz Leichsenring, advocates for the protection of creative space globally through innovative data and informative content. By working with local creatives, nightlife experts, and data analysts they calculates the cities creative footprint.

There are many young people who are creative but don’t have tools, peers or space in their neighbourhood to put their creativity into work. That’s where the Happy Locals comes to help; a group of Berlin based organizations, who help make alternative projects happen. Initiated in 2012 by Dimitri Hegemann and Annette Ochs in Berlin, the Happy Locals want to share their experience and knowledge with interested people, finding collaborators and partners to plan creative projects.

Expert Session: The future of the music industry
Ellen Kvarby (Sony Music)
Olga Zegers  (former ID&T/SFX)

Moderator: TBA

The Social structures in music industry are subject of discussion more then ever. In this expert session the focus will be the position of women in night life.

Strong women in night life are becoming more visible; behind the decks, as a promotor of as a producer. But we still have a long way to go. How far have we come and what are the issues women in the scene have to deal with?

Expert Session: Government policies
Marc Fort (Texas Music Office)
Naima Bouchtaoui (City of Amsterdam Art Factories)

Moderator: Mirik Milan (Night Mayor of Amsterdam)

The night as a product has become more and more important for the profiling and image of cities and areas. Both in the social economic and cultural area day and night are getting more intertwined. How can (local) government can create a healthy ground for the creative industry? The Texas Music Office supports on of the biggest music and cultural conferences in the world SXSW in Austin. It’s a great example how culture and creativity provides a lively city. But also Bureau Broedplaatsen, set up by the City of Amsterdam, show how providing affordable workspaces for creatives increases the cities creative footprint.


Dimitri Hegeman

Dimitri Hegemann is a German ‘Space Pioneer’ he transforms industrial ruins and appropriating forgotten spaces for major art and cultural projects in which Hegeman build an unrivaled reputation. He’s foremost known for founding the famous Berlin club Tresor and the now legendary Atonal festival in the Berlin Kraftwerk art-space. Recently he started the Happy People project encouraging and inspiring young people to build creative projects.

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Ellen Kvarby

At Sony Music Sweden, Ellen is Head of the Creative Department. During her time at Sony she’s been working with artist such as Tove Styrke, kent, and Linnea Henriksson. In the last three years, Sony Music Sweden has been awarded for their creative work with kent, Alan Walker and Linnea Henriksson including three Cannes Lions and two Eurobest awards. Ellen’s great interest in music has led to working for the Stockholm Jazz Festival, DJ-gigs at some of Sweden’s most renowned clubs, arranging concerts and club nights, and Jazz History studies at Wofford.

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Lutz Leichsenring

As spokesman and member of the executive board of the Clubcommission Berlin, Lutz has been fighting for the rights of Berlin’s vast underground club scene since 2009. He also happens to be a member of Berlin’s Chamber of Commerce and Music Board, where he frequently votes on city development issues that serve to protect club areas affected by gentrification. In 2017 he initiated the Creative Footprint that finds numbers behind nightlife’s impact.

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Marc Fort

Marc is a music business consultant and the marketing coordinator at the Texas Music Office (TMO), within the Office of the Governor. Fort has a long history in the music industry; as a musician in several bands, as a radiomaker and -host, music journalist and since 2014 as one of seven members on the Austin Music Commission. He was elected unanimously by the Austin City Council and the city’s mayor to co-advise the council on music-related issues affecting the city and it citizens. TMO supports SXSW an important international music festival and conference that provided new energy for Austins cultural scene.

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Mirik Milan
Speaker & Moderator

Mirik is the elected Night Mayor of Amsterdam. Thanks to his years of technical experience he knows exactly how to process the trends he spots in society into attainable ideas, and how to bring together the right professionals in order to execute these ideas successfully. Since 2014 he’s the Night Mayor of Amsterdam. The night mayor is a rebel in a suit who asked and gives unsolicited advice to the mayor, city officials and the nightly creative sector.

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Naima Bouchtaoui

Naima is the project leader of Bureau Broedplaatsen, one of the internationally best known examples of programs that provide affordable creative workspaces. Bureau Broedplaatsen was set up by the City of Amsterdam in 2000. It brings together project developers, property owners, estate agencies and housing corporations and assist in the development of affordable studios and living/working spaces for artists and alternative cultural entrepreneurs on a permanent or temporary basis.

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Olga Zegers

Olga has been around in the music industry for over 25 years starting by working in the music industry in some way or form for over 25 years starting by working in clubs, being a booking agent and programming international festivals. Over the last 17 years she was responsible for top notch line ups of a variety of festivals and events including Mysteryland, Sensation, Welcome To The Future and many more whilst working at dance gigant ID&T.

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Organized by

Gather Festival

Gather is a combination of a conference and a festival and hosts some of the world's currently most interesting speakers and artists. It takes place in Stockholm, September 13-16 and is all about connecting diverse minds, backgrounds, experiences, and ideas through talks, cultural events, and objective-driven labs. Gather believes in the importance of collaboration, in creativity, and in the power of thinking differently.