Interview with Swiss superstar DJ Andrea Oliva

The Basel born DJ has become a fixture in Ibiza each summer. Here he talks to Time Out at the start of a summer season on the island headlining some of the biggest club events in the world.
Andrea Oliva
By Kit Macdonald |
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Andrea Oliva was born in Basel and began DJing at the age of 16, quickly building a reputation as one of Switzerland's best deep house jocks. His Banditz parties brought him to the attention of promoters around Europe and beyond, and for the last decade or so he has been a fixture in Ibiza each summer where he is one the main headline names each season at the legendary ANTS party series at Ushuaïa.  Oliva has become a key player over the years on the line-up at ANTS which now attracts some 6000 clubbers each week over the summer season, who adore the high energy atmosphere and deep underground tech house sounds. Indeeed 2017 shows no signs of slowing down for the Swiss Italian talent - with releases on Relief, Rejected, Kaluki, Snatch, Subliminal and 7Wallace throughout the year in addition to a debut Boiler Room session and key dates at clubs and festivals worldwide. Oliva will also be a headline act at what is perhaps this summer's most hyped new club, Hï in Ibiza, with his new residency, Andrea Oliva and friends, running throughout the season. 

You began DJing when you were very young, how did that happen?

My uncle had a synth with a drum sequencer which he used to produce techno, and i found it fascinating to watch him do it. Then when I was about 12 a couple of friends showed me how to mix two records and from that day i knew i wanted to learn to DJ, in the same way people decide they want to learn an instrument. I first played to a crowd when I was 15 or 16.

How important were your Banditz parties in developing your career?

They were the breakthrough in Switzerland, definitely. I had a job in record distribution, so I was this really young kid who had all the promos before the international headliners did. Banditz allowed us to book so many international DJs for tiny amounts of money. We had people like Nic Fanciulli, Audiofly and Loco Dice, who earn huge fees now, play for us for maybe 400 or 500 euros.

You're associated more with Ibiza than Switzerland these days, is that strange for you?

It's not because Ibiza is like a second home now, and I love having my base there in the summer. It makes sense because of the number of gigs I play there, and because the weather is so much nicer. I play maybe six or seven gigs a year in Switzerland now, so I do keep in touch with home as much as I can. Usually I play at Nordstern in Basel, which is famous worldwide for being an intimate little place that regularly has huge stars playing at it. One of the things I still do at home is my yearly all-night Christmas Eve set at Nordstern. It's always a really great night, all my friends come down after having dinner with their families, and it gets crazy.

What kind of impact has playing at ANTS each year had on you as a DJ?

I've been playing at ANTS Saturday since it began in 2013 but I wouldn't say it has changed me really as a DJ. It is important to just be yourself , you need to have your own kind of style and your trademark. ANTS was an unexpected success and it gets bigger and bigger each year. But I try to take it easy though and just enjoy the moment.

For all the dates and news on Andrea Oliva read more here 
Andrea Oliva will be in Switzerland on July 31 at Nordstern in Basel.

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