Music & clubs

Water, water everywhere

This summer at Haus der Kulturen der Welt’s Wassermusik X, the world will literally become your oyster. It starts Jul 21 and rolls on through Aug 13.

Image for Water, water everywhere
Oumou Sangar. Photo by Benoit Peverelli

This summer at Haus der Kulturen der Welt’s Wassermusik X, the world will literally become your oyster.

For its 10th edition, the water-centric music festival returns to the freshly renovated rooftop terrace of the “Pregnant Oyster” and revisits all the themes from preceding years, from “Surf and Tiki” in 2008 to last year’s “The Other Caribbean”. Musically speaking, this means a variety of festival faves from across the globe in addition to musicians and bands that didn’t make the cut in the past.

Arto Lindsay, member of NY’s no-wave combo DNA, plays the opening concert on July 21, followed by Colombian trio Los Pirañhas (Jul 22) who, like New Zealand-based Orchestra of Spheres (Jul 28), will cater to all you experimental dance music lovers out there. Another highlight will be pianist Abdullah Ibrahim and his band Ekaya, whose international career was kick-started by jazz legend Duke Ellington himself, defining South African pop music like no other (Aug 4). One day later, the festival ventures north to Mali with Grammy-award winning singer Oumou Sangaré contributing her trademark Wassoulou tunes (Aug 5). Heading east, Ethiopian jazz icon Alemayehu Eshete will be backed by The Polyversal Souls, Berlin’s very own Ghanaian-German ensemble fronted by Max Weissenfeldt (Aug 11). On its final day, Wassermusik invites Algerian superstar Khaled to demonstrate why he’s called the “King of Raï”.

The world-spanning experience – visually framed by the people responsible for Fusion Festival’s cosy look and feel – will be interspersed with daily contributions from art, fashion, film and, of course, politics. Argentinian-Spanish painter Pedro Strukelj, who attended the festival last year, created HKW-inspired drawings which will be exhibited in the venue’s foyer. On top, a fashion show questions the distribution networks of clothing for the African market; award-winning films from across the world will be screened; and lectures will fittingly tackle watery issues – like the potential conversion of part of the Spree into Berlin’s coolest public pool. The Jul 27 chat will be accompanied by HKW’s very own Chor der Kulturen der Welt, led by Barbara Morgenstern, also celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

Wassermusik X, Jul 21-Aug 13, concerts 7pm | Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Tiergarten