Interview by Talia Kliot
While we haven’t been able to see anyone in the hallways for the last little bit, I took to Zoom to talk to Noah Abecassis, the founder of Station Music Festival.
When Dawson students see you in the hallways (or on Zoom, in this case), what do they see?
In the hallways, they would see a tall guy. I hope I’m smiling, but other than that, I’m not super sure.
Do you have any hobbies?
Yeah, well since we’ve been in quarantine, hobbies have sort of become everything. I’m actually sitting right here and building a vegetable garden. It’s been a cool learning experience to build something from scratch like that. I’ve also been painting… And cooking, I love cooking.
What’s your favourite recipe?
This sounds really simple, but I really like mushroom pasta. With a good glass of red wine, of course. It sounds like a mom thing, but it works.
Classy. If peanut butter wasn’t called peanut butter, what would you call it?
Um. This is boring, but peanut jam, maybe?
Come on, you can do better than that.
Okay wait. Nut reduction, or nut pulp? I’m allergic to peanuts, so I don’t think about that very often.
I totally forgot. That was an insensitive question on my part.
So insensitive of you.
Oh my god. They’re going to fire me from The Plant. [Editor’s note: I still have my job.] Let me change the subject. Tell me a bit about Station Music Festival.
It’s an annual nonprofit music festival that raises money for local charities by promoting local musicians and local businesses. The idea came about two and a half years ago, when a friend of mine mentioned it en passant. It blew my mind. I told her she had to do it, but she said that there was no way she’d find enough time. I said, “If you don’t do it, I’m going to.” And she told me to go for it.
From that point, I spent a year and a half on and off working on it. I was getting a bit discouraged because of how much there was to figure out since I’m not someone who was ever part of the music industry or part of the charity circuit. So, the first bit consisted of finding experts who could tell me how to proceed. After that, I finally decided that I couldn’t keep doing it alone, so I spoke to a friend of mine, Josh Ptack. He was the only person I hadn’t worked with before, that I could trust to hold me accountable and not let me get discouraged. And so from that point, it became really serious; we were both set on making it happen.
About a month and a half ago, we posted our first Instagram post and launched officially. Everything was working out. We had our venue picked out, we were working on bringing artists, and getting sponsors was going super well. Then, when Coronavirus hit, we had to reevaluate everything. At first, we were very hopeful that things would fix themselves. But then, we realized that we really needed to call it off. That was a tough moment, but since then, we’ve seen it as a rebirth type thing. We still want the event to happen, hopefully next summer. We’re working on finding the best date, but we’re waiting to see how things roll out with the Coronavirus and the economy and everything. We’ve seen it as more of an opportunity to become more public and gain more of a following. So even though we’re not going to have a live version this summer, in the long run, it’s going to make for a better festival.
To keep up to date with Station, check out their Instagram account @stationmusicmtl where they are live-streaming concerts every Saturday night at 8 pm!