Curating Diversity in Europe

25.9.2020, 10.30 - 20 Uhr

Symposium (online + live onsite in Berlin), Akademie der Künste Berlin, Pariser Platz, Plenarsaal


The symposium “Curating Diversity in Europe”, taking place on- and offline, offers a platform for keeping the discourse on diversity in contemporary music in Europe alive, developing potentials for transformation during a time of limited international encounters and swelling nationalistic currents. The focus of the symposium is on processes and profiles of curating that critically question power structures and eurological patterns of thought, to implement political, collective or participatory strategies in the curatorial decision-making process. Keynotes by Du Yun and Sandeep Bhagwati will be followed by panel discussions on emancipation, decolonisation and "looted music".

The symposium is planned in a hybrid format. All content (keynotes, panels, chats and networking) will be transmitted live to onsite participants at the Akademie der Künste, and simultaneously via internet to an online audience; content will continue to be accessible after the symposium as online video documentation. With this hybrid format, we want to strengthen the international networking and at the same time enable personal meetings.

The symposium is a project of "Sounds Now", a European network dedicated to promoting more diversity and inclusion in contemporary music and sound art, in cooperation with the Akademie der Künste Berlin, inm / field notes and Ultima festival in Oslo.

Media partner: VAN outernational

The symposium will be continued in May 2021 as part of the "Memories in Music" festival (May 6-9, 2021) at the Akademie der Künste.

We kindly ask you to register for active participation at the symposium by September 15, 2020 at mdzm [​at​] free of charge. The livestream can be followed passively without registration.

Download Registration Form


10:30 a.m. On-site: Arrival and informal meet and greet

11:30 a.m. Welcome
by Jeanine Meerapfel (President of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin) and organisers Julia Gerlach (Secretary of the Music Section of the Akademie der Künste), Thorbjørn Tønder Hansen (Artistic Director, Ultima Festival Oslo), Lisa Benjes (Director of the field notes Program by the inm – initiative neue musik berlin e.V.)

Part 1: Emancipating the Curatorial Process, Curating After Covid-19

11:45 a.m. Keynote “Multifaceted Curating” (working title) by Du Yun (Professor of Composition at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, and distinguished visiting professor at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, free curator, USA)

12:45 a.m. On-site: Coffee break
12:45 a.m. Online: Music presented by cdrk

1:00 p.m. Panel I: The Emancipation of Curating
with Stefanie Carp (Director Ruhrtriennale, D), Artyom Kim (Omnibus Ensemble, UZ), Sharif Sehnaoui (Co-founder and artistic director of Irtijal Festival, RL), Du Yun (Professor of Composition at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, and distinguished visiting professor at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, free curator, USA)
Moderation: Thorbjørn Tønder Hansen (Artistic Director, Ultima Festival Oslo)

2:15 p.m. On-site: Coffee break

Part 2: Curatorial Profiles and Perspective

3:00 p.m. Keynote “Curating Musicking as a Mode of Wakefulness in Interesting Times” by Sandeep Bhagwati (Composer, Curator, Professor at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia University Montreal, CA)

4:00 p.m. On-site: Coffee break
4:00 p.m. Music presented by cdrk

4:15 p.m. Panel II: Decolonizing the Curating Discourse in Europe
with Sandeep Bhagwati, George Lewis (Edwin H. Case Professor of American Music at Columbia University, USA), Elaine Mitchener (contemporary vocalist, movement artist and composer, GB), Anothai Nitibhon (Vice President for Academic and Research, Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music and free curator, T)
Moderation: Christos Carras (Executive Director at Onassis Cultural Centre - Athens, GR)

5:30 p.m. On-site: Networking Walk
5:30 p.m.Online: Networking – ZOOM

6:00 p.m. Online: Music presented by cdrk

6:15 p.m. Panel III: Archives and Transcultural Composition. “Looted Music” and Accessibility
with Carlos Gutierrez (Composer, Artistic Director OEIN, RB), Lars Christian Koch (Director of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin’s collections at the Humboldt Forum, D), meLê yamomo (Assistant Professor of Theatre, Performance and Sound Studies at the University of Amsterdam / NL, RP, D), Tiago de Oliveira Pinto (UNESCO Chair Holder “Transcultural Music Studies” University of Music Franz Liszt, D).
Moderation: Julia Gerlach (Secretary of the Music Section of the Akademie der Künste)

7:30 p.m. Open Panel: Exchange about the topics of the day, perspectives for topics in May 2021

8:00 p.m. On-site: informal picnic with a musical intervention in Tiergarten park
All contributions will be documented and made available on:

Download Program