Berlin Atonal is widely renowned as one of the world’s most important festivals of experimental music, video art and media experimentation. It was re-established in 2013 at the so-called “Kraftwerk”, a decommissioned thermal power station located in the heart of Berlin. The 2017 festival featured works by more than 100 artists from the areas of music, sound art, film, animation, media technology, painting, installation and interactive media. The works included sculptures and installations, audio-visual performances, site-specific installations of architecture, light and sound, lectures and workshops. The festival started with a performance of two new pieces by the Ensemble Modern, in which the octyaophonic sound system, designed by the composer Karlheinz Stockhausen, has been used in Berlin for the very first time. The composer Roly Porter has been invited to present a major production. He is known for using mathematic structures in music and has conducted pioneering work in modelling biological processes, e.g. cell growth, for compositional purposes. For the Atonal 2017, he has developed a musical work together with the Sri Lankan composer Paul Jebanasam which emphasised and connected the distinctive styles of both artists. In cooperation with Japanese partners, the 2017 festival has put together a new programme entitled “New Assembly” which introduced Berlin Atonal to Asian and especially Japanese audiences, and presented individual Atonal productions in Tokyo.
Artistic director: Laurens von Oswald
Curators: Harry Class (AU), Paul Reachi (FR), Farahnaz Hatam (IR), Colin Hacklander (US)