The field of New Music is often accused of showing too little political commitment. Consequently, the fifth addition of the Cologne music festival explored whether there are any political positions to be found in contemporary New Music – especially in works which are not text-based. Under the motto “Music. Politics?” the 2015 festival presented a large number of concerts by internationally renowned orchestras and leading ensembles of New Music. In addition to a series of participative projects for amateur musicians, the festival included events portraying the Dutch composer Louis Andriessen, in whose works political commitment plays a central role. The festival has developed an interdisciplinary, cross-genre project called Freihafen (“Free Harbour”), which examined the visionary and political potential of music by means of artistic actions, lectures and concerts. Audiences had free admission to a 25-hour-long, diverse programme of concerts and philosophical and scientific reflection and exchange, staged in the concert hall and foyer of the Cologne Philharmonic Orchestra, in the festival tent and in the neighbouring Museum Ludwig.
Artistic director: Louwrens Langevoort
Participants: Klangforum Wien, Initiative für Neue Musik - suono mobile, Vokalensemble Nova Wien, Anna Soucek (AT), Jan Tabor (CZ), Michael Scheidl (AT), Nora Scheidl (AT), David Kweksilber Big Band.
Vienna, Konzerthaus: 23 – 24 May 2015; Hollandfestival, Amsterdam 6. – 7.6.2015; Festival ZeitRäume, Basel: 12 – 13 Sep. 2015; Philharmonic orchestra at the Rainy Days festival, Luxembourg: 28 – 29 Nov. 2015