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A catalog of musical activity in Berlin would turn up an astonishing array of institutions, ensembles, genres, approaches, and styles. Some of this diversity, as it appears in the festival, is reflected in the views in this section.

Berlin’s Ongoing Musical Renaissance

By A. J. Goldmann
Berlin is a city of contradictions. It is an old European capital with a youthful energy and vibe. Situated at the crossroads between East and West, the reunified city has the culture and sophistication of London or Paris and the run-down and grungy feel of Prague or Budapest. It is a place that is so burdened with history yet so free: a city where the weight of the past is countered by the vibrancy of nonstop artistic excellence and experimentation.

Zitty, a bi-monthly listings magazine, teems with music listings on everything from all-night raves in abandoned seven-story buildings to radical reinterpretations of Wagner operas. In between is exciting music of every stripe.

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Contemporary Music in Berlin: An Artist’s View

Violinist Ekkehard Windrich, member of KNM Berlin, answers the question “Are people in Berlin interested in contemporary music or in cutting edge compositions?”

I think finding an audience in Berlin is not very difficult, even if you do quite exciting projects. To find that audience is not the problem. Perhaps it's a bit more difficult to keep that audience and not just to be a fashion …

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Simon Rattle talks about his approach to Mahler’s music. Courtesy of EMI.


DJ Shazam, from Nomad SoundSystem, on musical diversity in the Berlin club scene. Interview by Tamara Tischendorf.

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