Hoping to get a glimpse of the future, Solveig Steinhardt bought tickets for the MaerzMusik contemporary music festival.
In time, out of time, ahead of time – the Maerz Musik festival showcases the music of the future.
"The MaerzMusik festival unites composers and works under one theme."
For more than a decade, Berlin has been presenting international avant-garde music at the MaerzMusik festival. If you are having a hard time grasping the exact meaning of the term avant-garde, imagine music that follows the traditional parameters of Western music while trying to break its boundaries in some way. It’s a very broad genre, often difficult to recognize, and each year the festival makes an effort to unite its guest composers and their works under a common theme, either geographic or conceptual. When it explored the contemporary music of Baltic countries in 2003, performances were filled with Eastern European folkloric inspirations. In 2006, the focus was “Japan and the West,” or more precisely, on the interactions and analogies between Japanese and American music. In 2010, it examined music as a realm of utopian thought and practice.
This year, the festival’s brand-new artistic director, Berno Odo Polzer, decided to rename the festival altogether, and not just for this edition, but for the future, too. By giving MaerzMusik a new subheading, “A Festival for Time Issues,” Polzer intends to tell us that time determines our lives and our history, as well as the production patterns guiding contemporary music. From 20 to 29 March, installations, concerts, performances, and film projects will explore temporal experiences in music with the aim of offering visitors ways to access the phenomenon of time. The first performance, Liquid
Room at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele, is a four-hour concert/installation involving four stages where sounds and audience can move freely, and learn more about the 20+ events scheduled for this year’s edition at www.berlinerfestspiele.de