Telekom Electronic Beats

Future Sound Of Leipzig: Booking Germany’s Best New DIY Club

The final chapter of our Future Sound of Leipzig series puts the spotlight on Solaris, a resident DJ at the Institut Für Zukunft and the club’s main booker. In order to pick her brain, we presented several sub-topics to get her going. Here, she shares insight into the IfZ crew’s goals to undermine societal ills and how she developed her personal sound.

On the vibe at IfZ:

“When I’m booking people, I look for someone whose musical approach fulfils my narrative with maximum of fun and the ability to let go for a night. We try to have a balanced ratio of males and females on our lineups. When we started doing this, it seemed to be hard to find ‘enough’ female artists—especially in techno. But I was wrong; there’s a lot of good female acts, but sometimes they’re not promoted that well. It takes more effort to find them sometimes. We’re not telling everyone, ‘Look, we are really pushing to promote women specifically.’ What we want is someone to see them in the lineup or hear them play. Ideally, it’s a more subtle way to teach and to dismantle prejudices.”

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On IfZ’s vision:

“We have a working group of several designers, and Lena Wawrzyniak is the head. She coordinates everything and created the CI.  Since January, the designer has changed three times. Anja Kaiser did the monthly poster for the last three months. In January it will changed again to Jim Kühnel, who won a prize for the poster of the first Raster Noton label showcase at IfZ.”

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On Solaris’ Voice as a DJ:

“I’ve been DJing professionally for three years, during which time I’ve developed in different ways and styles. I play a lot of broken beats and spheric, ambient techno. I recently noticed that I’ve become more interested in slower sounds over the years. I also like playing Chicago house, acid, electro, ambient and movie soundtracks, but that doesn’t happen often. People book me more for techno in general, and that’s what I still like most, but I try to combine more than one genre in a DJ set. I don’t like it if the whole set sounds the same—it gets boring.”

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On the development of IfZ and Leipzig’s scene:

“When we start doing the club, it felt like we were running into walls when we made more “advanced” bookings. It’s hard to reach people in Leipzig with stuff that isn’t so straightforward. Now it seems like we’ve turned people on a bit more. The experimental shows are getting more attention, but these are still niches. What’s really noticeable is that people from other cities are coming to the club more and having an influence on the way people in Leipzig listen to music. It’s a good development, I think.”

Read past Future Sound of Leipzig columns here.

Published December 29, 2015.