Watch: Full 50-minute ‘A Year with Armin van Buuren’ movie

As Dutch trance titan Armin van Buuren put it to inthemix this year: “I’ve never been more productive than I am now.” Judging by the relentless activity condensed into the new documentary, A Year with Armin van Buuren, he’s wasn’t exaggerating. Filmed in the lead-up to the birth of his daughter in July 2011, the movie documents the DJ’s level-headed commitment to his A State Of Trance radio show and non-stop tour schedule, while also venturing into his home life.

“Trance music has a special effect on people,” Armin says early in the doco. “It unites them in a way I’ve never seen with other types of music. It makes them ecstatic and has an almost religious effect. It’s extraordinary.” There’s certainly plenty of evidence of that across the 50 minutes, with an ecstatic turnout for the opening night of his Space Ibiza residency (Armin tells of his first experience on the island, doing the “graveyard shift” after Judge Jules at Eden), packed-out arenas on the A State Of Trance 500 tour and one acolyte reduced to tears. The movie also takes us to the childhood bedroom where Armin made Blue Fear and shows his process in the studio alongside Ferry Corsten.

However it’s the glimpses of vulnerability behind the business-like demeanour that are most revealing. “Sometimes he works for over 80 to 90 hours a week,” Armin’s wife Erika says. “He never stops working. He doesn’t like to show his weakness and does everything for his fans.” The balance of touring life and marriage isn’t always easy, as Armin reveals to the camera: “When I get home, I’m tired and cranky. And the woman I love has to suffer.”

In recent interviews, including our own from earlier this year, the DJ has strayed from the well-scripted path and revealed a more pensive mood. The theme continues here. “It’s good to realise I’m spending 95-percent of my life, with people who won’t love me in ten years’ time,” he says in A Year with Armin van Buuren. “They’ll be cheering someone else.” Armin fan or not, this is well worth a watch. Click on the Captions button for subtitles.