About the Project

  • The Idea

    About the Project

    The Idea 

    A singing encounter

     

    Sing along, Berlin! has one goal: to bring together people with different social and cultural backgrounds by singing together and experiencing community with others. The idea is to discover ones own voice, give it its due space and share it. Singing together initiates encounters between people in private and in public.

    The Berlin Philharmonie will be the space to be conquered first. In a weeklong camp the participants will study songs in different languages. Their themes shall all revolve around welcome and arrival. Children, adolescents and adults with or without a previous training will join together. By singing together in an informal setting, singular connections shall develop and diverse relationships shall be endowed.

    On the basis of this personal and practical experience Sing along, Berlin! wishes to expose the dimensions of the singing voice and give the participants a sense of its possible impact. These mentioned aspects and the development of a community shall play an important role in the camp’s rehearsal process. Sing along, Berlin! is looking for a singing community, which will – after intensive days of rehearsal in the protected space of the Philharmonie – dare to step out into the public space and share this sense of encounter (and create new moments of encounters). Two prominent places of public life shall make way for this momentum: Kulturforum Berlin and Berlin’s Main Station.

     

    At the Main Station

    The idea of the camp to create temporary social spaces by communal singing will be continued inside the Main Station. The event shall give a momentary structure to the general confusion of voices at the station. The commuters will be literally “picked up” and invited to experience an emotional situation and let themselves be touched. The Main Station signifies a place of arrival, meeting and departure. It is a public space that at different rhythms turns people into observer, people waiting, searching or rushing. All different pulses are to be found simultaneously.

    This major traffic junction owns a very specific acoustic and with its crossing paths it creates an architecture full of emotion and a swinging atmosphere. It is a polyphonic space that comes to life and is shaped through the various voices – an architecture of movement.

    All of the above makes Berlin’s Main Station into an attractive performance space for Sing along, Berlin! which stands for the welcome and the offer to accompany the travellers. They are to be engaged and invited to a brief halt in their journey by voices. These voices prepared themselves in a working group to unexpectedly receive and welcome others and accompany them for a short distance.

     

  • The Camp

    The general idea / overview

     

    Sing along, Berlin! is a summer camp for all members of the public who want to try out their voices and meet in the Berliner Philharmonie. In very diverse styles polyphonic songs and musical arrangements will be learnt which all deal with arrival and welcome. With or without sheet music the participants will sing, improvise and train their voices all together as well as in smaller groups. During the Sing along, Berlin! camp different methods will be trained how to approach others whether a friend or a stranger by playfully making contact and sending messages through the use of the voice.

    Members of the Berliner Rundfunkchor (the Broadcast Choir of Berlin) will look after the different groups (“studios”) as their mentors. On top of training the individual vocal capacity during the camp the participants are to experience ways and impulses to get in touch with others, to become self-confident while singing and to develop the bravery to show themselves and to accost others and to sing for them. The camp will focus on three forms of presentation: concert, performance art and flash mob. The centre of attention will be the open cooperation of all participants rather than individual abilities and achievements. The first presentation will take place as part of “Berliner Philharmoniker Open Air 2016” at the Kulturforum on 27th August. The highlight will be the performances in the Main Station on 28th and 29th August.

    The course of events

    The Sing along, Berlin! summer camp will consist of different units both for all participants together and so-called “studios” and “workshops” in smaller groups dependent on musical preferences. Every day will consist of different units: exchange with the singing tutors, vocal training, harmony singing, musical improvisation, contact improvisation, scene work and movement.

    Catering and chillout will be cared for.

    The schedule of the camp from 22nd to 29th August 2016
    22nd – 26th August, 10am – 7pm daily camp at Philharmonie Berlin
    27th August, 11am – 6pm rehearsal in the great hall of the Philharmonie Berlin and presentation outside at Kulturforum, Berlin
    28th August, 11am – 6pm vocal warm up, event in the Main Station and additional surprise performance
    29th August 3pm – 5pm repetition of the event at the Main Station

    preparational meeting: 5th July, 6pm – 8pm at rehearsal space of the Rundfunkchor Berlin im Haus des Rundfunks, Masurenallee 8-14, 14046 Berlin (in between U-Bahn station Theodor-Heuss-Platz and S-Bahn station Messe Nord/ICC).

    requirements 


    love for singing (previous experience is no condition), minimum age is 12 years

    costs

    entry fee: children/adolescents/students: 50,- € including catering on site. Sibling concession: 10,-€. Adults: 75 – 150,-€ at ones own discretion. Holders of the Berlin Pass: 5,-€ (registration with info@singalongberlin.de)

     

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  • The Studios

    The summer camp Sing along, Berlin! consists of several units with all participants together and others in smaller groups. We want to differentiate studios, workshops and tutti.

     

    Studios/Tutti

    In the so called studios smaller groups will devote themselves to a certain musical genre. By letting us know your musical preferences during your registration you will be able to work on a specific musical and aesthetic style in greater detail. While attending the studio you will study four pieces in this specific style. The vocal mentors who are all members of the Rundfunkchor Berlin will guide you with vocal training, learning the songs and share creative hints. An additional musical piece of each different style will be rehearsed and performed at the events. All participants will study those in rehearsals with everybody attending. 

    Studios

    1. Traditional choir
    Musical direction: Kerstin Behnke

    2. Circle Song/ Improvisation/Intercultural Song
    Musical direction: Michael Betzner-Brandt and Alfred Mehnert

    3. Pop/Jazz
    Musical direction: Philip Eick

    Mentors from the Rundfunkchor Berlin:
    Peter Ewald, Sabine Eyer, Heike Peetz-Glintenkamp, Axel Scheidig, Isabelle Vosskühler

     

    Musical direction of the Traditional Choir studio

    Kerstin Behnke works as a tutor for choral conducting at the Music Conservatory in Lübeck, as the artistic director of the chamber choir TONIKUM, the Berlin Cappella and receives national and international invitations as a conductor. After studying school music in her hometown Hamburg she joined the Berlin University of the Arts to train as a conductor with Professor Mathias Husmann.

    Her concerts combine the present and the past, compositions by men and by women, different artistic disciplines, science and music and works with various cultural backgrounds. Kerstin Behnke initiates compositions of new music for choir, especially with the composition prize by Berliner Cappella. She rediscovered many works by Lili Boulanger, Augusta Holmés, Marianne Martines and Emilie Mayer among others and enabled the re-edition of some of the works. In collaboration with the chamber choir TONIKUM she works on developing new concepts for concerts that enhance the inner participation of the audience beyond the simple listening to music.

     

    Musical direction of the Pop and Jazz studio

    Philip Eick

    Studied school music at “UdK Berlin” and currently trains as a singer and rhythmical choir conducting at the “Royal Academy of Music Aarhus/Aalborg” in Denmark. He was drawn to Denmark and right into the heart of the rhythmical vocal music scene to further explore the secrets of the Scandinavian a capella music. This genre attracts beyond the Scandinavian borders with echoing names such as “Vocal Line" and "The Real Group“ and also with new techniques like the "Complete Vocal Technique".

    Philip Eick toured for concerts and competitions not only through Germany and Denmark but also to Indonesia, France, Spain, Latvia and Austria. He was one of the founding members of the a capella band „BART“ and founder of „Kiezchor Schöneberg“, he sang for the „Vokalakademie Berlin“ in the “Fabulous Fridays” and worked as a singer with the “Salonorchester Berlin”. These days he is singing with the ensembles “Naura” and “Syng Selected”.

    Besides his various engagements as a choral conductor he also  holds national and international workshops on choral conducting, improvisation and vocal techniques in choirs. Also he teaches singing and is a member of the Chorkreativ-Team.

    Musical direction of the Pop and Jazz studio

    Philip Eick

    Studied school music at “UdK Berlin” and currently trains as a singer and rhythmical choir conducting at the “Royal Academy of Music Aarhus/Aalborg” in Denmark. He was drawn to Denmark and right into the heart of the rhythmical vocal music scene to further explore the secrets of the Scandinavian a capella music. This genre attracts beyond the Scandinavian borders with echoing names such as “Vocal Line" and "The Real Group“ and also with new techniques like the "Complete Vocal Technique".

    Philip Eick toured for concerts and competitions not only through Germany and Denmark but also to Indonesia, France, Spain, Latvia and Austria. He was one of the founding members of the a capella band „BART“ and founder of „Kiezchor Schöneberg“, he sang for the „Vokalakademie Berlin“ in the “Fabulous Fridays” and worked as a singer with the “Salonorchester Berlin”. These days he is singing with the ensembles “Naura” and “Syng Selected”.

    Besides his various engagements as a choral conductor he also  holds national and international workshops on choral conducting, improvisation and vocal techniques in choirs. Also he teaches singing and is a member of the Chorkreativ-Team.

    Musical direction of the Improvisation and Cross-Culture studio

    Alfred Mehnert

    has performed with the greatest and proved an incredible range from Jazz to Latin and electronical music. He has worked as a performer, a conférencier and as a lyricist during poetry slams in Kreuzberg’s doss houses on the one hand and on the great stage of the “Deutsche Theater” on the other. He succeeds as a teacher to overcome differences in age and social backgrounds and he manages to bring together formidable professionals to perform homogenously with unaware spectators in a jam that will captivate every witness.

     

    Workshops

    The workshops will be the units wherein you will be able to try out scenework, dance and performance skills. As an artistic medium the workshops will intercede between singing - which means working a lot on yourself and your “instrument” - and the outside world. The exercises will enable you to create your own stage in the public space and to do so with confidence. They are meant to help you open up towards the outside world and towards strangers and enforce the idea behind “Sing along, Berlin!”. A frame of instructions for movement and play will equip all participants no matter how experienced they are with the tools to playfully improvise their activities at the Main Station. The studios described above will be split into four different workshops. These workshops will be run by dancers, performers, directors and drama teachers.

     

    Direction of the Acting workshop

    Adrienn Bazsò

    was born in Hungary and trained as an actress in Budapest under the direction of Andrea Spolarics. She then performed with the company of the “Bárka“ theatre and other fringe productions in Budapest. She used the techniques of Stanislawski and Strasberg and studied the Grotowski method, physical theatre and contact improvisation. She moved to Berlin in 2012 for a MA in Theatre Pedagogy at the University of the Arts Berlin (UdK) and graduated successfully in 2015. Currently she works freelance as an actor at Grips Theater Berlin, runs the youth “Operativer Eingriff” at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater in Berlin and directs for “Klangradar – Kompositionslabor Schule” in cooperation with Panagiotis Iliopoulos.

     

    Direction of the Physical Theatre and Dance workshop

    Mareike Jung

    was born in 1991 in Sallneck and works as a mime, dancer and magician. She counts herself as part of the dynamic and innovative young creative scene in Germany. Still very young she started acting classes with actor Wolfgang Dold and improved her conjuring skills by attending the circle of magicians in Freiburg. From an early age she publicly performed her own magic and fire show in several theatres and on various events. 2014 she started to present her own dance performances and increasingly develops her physical theatre skills. She carried out several dance and circus projects with adolescents and in 2012 she decided to attend a course in mime and pantomime at Etage Berlin. More recently she has worked as a dramaturge, director and performer of her own show “Kopflos”. She also collaborated with the internationally successful Matroccrolis and D.A.T (Das andere Theater/ the other theatre). In 2015 she started a year of further training of dance at Dock 11, Berlin.

     

    Direction of the Percussion and Performance workshop

    Robyn Schulkowsky

    a US American percussionist, has been living in Germany since 1980. She interpreted and premiered some of the most important works for solo percussionist and is a much sought after performer. Her regular collaborators include the musicians Joey Baron, Reinhold Friedrich, Kim Kashkashian, the composer Christian Wolff, the choreographer Sasha Waltz and the artist Günther Uecker. Her percussion project with factory workers in Austria won the YEAH! – Young EARopean Award in 2011. In 2005 she initiated the “Rhythm Lab” and has travelled the world with it ever since, to reach new horizons of sound and experiences of listeners. They have played many venues including the Grand Central Station in New York, several cities in Romania, in Ingolstadt, Island, Mexico and Uruguay. Further stops in China and Argentina are scheduled for later this year.

     

    Direction of the Physical Theatre and Pantomime workshop

    Sandra Strauch

    The mime artist and bon vivant was born in 1979 and prefers to take things as they come her way. Living this philosophy she has become a sort of multi purpose adhesive full of wide ranging life experience. Whether as a professional mime artist and actress, a performance artist or producer, the “doer” Sandra Strauch delights and inspires her various collaborators and audiences with her various projects. In the last ten years she has taken an integral part in shaping the creative and often crazy cultural scene in Berlin. While off stage she runs movement and acting trainings that motivate the participants and are full of fun in places such as in children’s circuses, youth clubs, preparatory colleges and on large scale demonstrations. She manages to prove her distinct skills with people when she leads groups of up to 90 participants at congresses all over Germany. Her special interest in the human body and body language brought her to study therapeutical bodywork (Shiatsu and Zen-therapy®) and this again is inseparable from other aspects in her professional life. She is particularly excited to combine her previous experiences with choral speech and singing in this project and is looking forward to this summer!

     

    Vocal Mentoring

    Vocal mentor for the Jazz and Pop studio

    Peter Ewald

    studied church music at the Kirchenmusikschule in Halle an der Saale and graduated  with an A-degree. Between 1996 and 1998 he attended a correspondence course in concert and oratorical singing at the same college in Halle.

    Starting in 1990 Peter Ewald has been working as a church musician in the area around Lübben. He started his secondary profession as an oratory singer in 1991. Initially as a regular stand-in his collaboration with the Rundfunkchor Berlin, with the NDR-Chor and the Rias-Kammerchor started in 2001. He was assigned a post as a fixed member of the Rundfunkchor Berlin in 2011.

     

    Vocal mentor for the studio for Traditional Church Music

    Axel Scheidig

    was born in Sonneberg (Thüringen) and received his first musical training at the Spezialschule für Musikerziehung in Wernigerode and with the Rundfunk- Jugendchor Wernigerode. Between 1991 and 1997 he studied singing and musical theater in Weimar with Prof. H. Bante. He attended singing classes with Schlick, Lorenz, Moll and Stämpfli. In 1997 Axel Scheidig received the award of the International Handel Competion in Halle.

    He was a founding member of the vocal ensemble “Die Weimarer Hofsänger” which toured Paris, Verona, Athens and others and won the award of the Deutsche Musikrat in 1998.

    From 2002 to 2004 he sang as a permanent ensemble member of the Collegium Vocale Gent. As a soloist he performed for the theatres in Gera, Eisenach and Weimar in “Figaro’s Wedding” by Mozart, “Die Kluge” by Orff, “Don Carlos” by Verdi, “Paris Life” by Offenbach. In 1998 he worked temporarily for the NDR Chor. Starting in 1997 Axel Scheidig sang for the Rundfunkchor Berlin as a guest and was given a permanent position in 2005. Solo performances include Sir John Tavener’s “The Veil of the Temple” at the Hamburger Bahnhof (Berlin 2007) and Johann Sebastian Bach’s “St. Mathew Passion” under the musical direction of Sir Simon Rattle (Osterfestspiele Salzburg and Philharmonie Berlin, 2010).

    Together with three other singers of the Rundfunkchor Berlin Axel Scheidig is a member of the ensemble “Vokalzeit” and of the association of soloists “ Die Charmonists” with whom he tours all over Europe. In 2010 he performed the part of Robert Biberti in the “Comedian Harmonist” production of the Staatstheater Darmstadt.

     

    Vocal mentor for the Circle Song and Improvisation studio

    Isabelle Voßkühler

    was born in 1971 in Berlin and studied musical theory and romance studies. In 1992 she moved to the academy of music “Hanns Eisler” in Berlin to study singing. While still a student she sang as a freelancer for the Rias-Kammerchor, the NDR-Chor, the Collegium Vocale Gent and the Rundfunkchor Berlin. She was accepted as a permanent member by the latter in 1997 where she frequently is heard in solo parts. In the last years she has often performed in concerts dedicated to contemporary music with the Ensemble Integrales.

    Vocal mentor for the Circle Song, Improvisation and Jazz studio

    Sabine Eyer

    Sabine Eyer was born in Hagen and attended her studies in singing at the Academy for Music and Theatre in Leipzig with Prof. Berthold Schmid. She profited from artistic input by Bernarda Fink, Michael Volle, Anna Reynolds and Helena Lazarska in their master classes. She attended the song master classes of Prof Sigmund Hjelset (Norwegian Song) and Francoise Tillard (French Song).

    As a soloist she has performed nationally and internationally in theatres, at concerts and at festivals including Gewandhaus Leipzig, Festival & Academy, Verbier and Mendelssohn Festtage, Leipzig. At the Opera Leipzig she sang the grandson in “Lohengrin” by Richard Wagner and Soprano II in “Diary of one that disappeared” by Leos Janacek. At the theatre in Chemnitz she performed Third Lady in “The magic Flute” and Hansel in “Hansel and Gretel” by Humperdinck. 

    In February 2011 she became a permanent member of the Rundfunkchor Berlin. Before that she had performed with them frequently since 2008 as a freelancer.

    Artistic Director

    Michael Betzner-Brandt 

    lives in Berlin and works as a conductor, author, pedagogue and pianist for silent movies. He develops groovy contemporary choir music with his award winning choir “Fabulous Fridays”, which is published with Carus-Verlag. He also is the founder and director of the “Ich-kann-nicht-singen-Chor” (“I-cannot-sing-choir”), the Rock-Pop choir 60+ “High Fossility” and “Begegnungschor Berlin – Berliner singen mit Geflüchteten” (“Berliners sing with refugees”). He has published books, organised numerous concerts and workshops with the theme “creative choir – singing without sheetmusic”. www.CHORkreativ.de

     

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  • Public Actions

     The public events

    Out into the public

    27th August, 11am – 6pm rehearsal in the great hall of the Philharmonie Berlin and presentation outside at Kulturforum, Berlin

    28th August, 1pm – 6pm vocal warm up, event in the Main Station, afterwards surprise event at the Federal Ministry of Finance

    29th August 3pm – 5pm repetition of the event at the Main Station 

     

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  • The Community and Review

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