Berlin’s legendary Berghain club reopens its doors, offering an entirely new experience

August 4, 2020

Although Berlins nightlife is still on hold due to Covid-19, former power plant, and legendary nightclub Berghain, has reopened its doors, and is now offering a whole new experience.


With a maximum capacity of 50 people at a time to respect social distancing measures, individuals can now discover a new sound exhibition called "Eleven songs -- Hall at Berghain" which is the creation of artistic duo Sam Auinger and Hannes Strobl, and runs until August 2.


Without the venue's selective doormen guarding the entrance, no one has to worry about being denied entry. Once inside, instead of entering a crowded nightclub filled with techno music, visitors are welcomed to grab a seat and listen to the exhibition.


“You listen, you experience, you can close your eyes or leave them open and follow the sound across the room,” said Carsten Seiffarth, Berlin-based curator and director of the sound art gallery Singuhr. “It's also about having an experience with this room and feeling emotions that go beyond just listening.”


Instead, visitors to the former power plant are wrapped in a mysterious, almost surreal soundscape of rhythmic throbbing, soft city noises, murmurings and even whirling helicopter blades.


The architecture of the place makes this experience so much more unique due to the way the projected sounds interact with the architecture of the concrete walls. "The room itself is a kind of instrument to them," Steffens said.


Although many restrictions have been lifted in recent months allowing retail shops, restaurants and museums to reopen, nightclubs are still closed due to the concern of big crowds circulating indoors, potentially leading to another wave of outbreak.


"We didn't really know what was going to happen. What if no one came because they were afraid of getting infected?" said Seiffarth. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case.


“Besides, people are ready to get out of the house and do something different after weeks of confinement”, he added. "It's also about having an experience with this room and feeling emotions that go beyond just listening."


Source: AFP by Larissa RAUSCH