Andy Barsekow: “The PULS Open Air is more than just a typical music festival”

On the occasion of the Puls Open Air Festival, taking place from the 30th of May to the 1st of June, we made some questions to Andy Barsekow, the Festival Coordinator. Puls is a radio program of the Bayerische Rundfunk that support new bands and innovative music.

Tell us a little about yourself and your role at the Puls Open Air festival. How do you become the festival coordinator?

For me, almost everything is about music and the promotion of young bands. That’s why I’m also responsible for the music rotation on the radio and the band promotion at PULS. In my role as a content curator and BR project leader of the PULS Open Air, all my favorite areas come together. Organization and music. PULS has had a wonderful indoor festival at the Funkhaus of the Bayerischer Rundfunk for 15 years with the PULS Festival. For a long time, I’ve been working to organize an open-air version in the summer so that PULS music can be made accessible to a wider audience. In 2016 we join forces with the organizers AMONT Gastro GmbH to organize PULS Open Air. Since then, I am very pleased to form part of the PULS Open Air.

What are the highlights of this year’s edition?

There are many news this year. In addition to all the great concerts and parties, I’m especially looking forward to our new electronic stage “Burghain”, where people can dance all night in the open air to electronic music, a project that we have been planning for a long time and finally is included in this year’s edition. The trio Kitschkrieg is not often seen live and their show in this environment probably would be extremely unique. And clearly, AnnenMayKantereit is certainly unbelievable.

What can we find in this festival different from another music festival?

The PULS Open Air is more than just a typical music festival. The supporting program plays a similarly important role as the concerts and parties. As in the last year, we again offer various workshops where the audience can, for example: make radio or coding and can interactively contribute to topics such as fair fashion and plastic-free. For the first time, there are also live podcasts recorded on-site with audiences and normally released as podcasts after the festival. On top of that is the unique location of the palace Kaltenberg. There spike towers, a rippling mill, a small amphitheater and a huge arena meet a thoroughly designed lighting concept by visual artist Matthias Singer. There is certainly not that often.

Big music festivals like Primavera Sound have focused their line-up in the female participation, and you are doing the same this year. Is the future female?

The future is balanced. It just does not matter if a band / DJ is female or male. Because in the end, only the music counts. But to make it that far, a few things still have to change – not only in the world of music but generally in our society. Fortunately, a few players in the music industry are progressing and trying to break up the long-established structures. The Primavera, the KeyChange Initiative or the PULS Open Air are just a few examples.

Tell us one band from Munich we should track down. 

Hard to say. There are a lot of good bands all over Bavaria right now: Cosma Joy, Some Sprouts, Hannah & Falco, Angela Aux, Manual Kant, Me & Marie, Bruckner, SAMT, Endlich Rudern, ZULU, Roberto Bianco & Die Abbrunzati Boys, Lakedaimon, SEDA, The Nice Nice, LORiiA, Felly, Tiger Tiger, Die Sauna, Umme Block… I could continue the list forever.

What are the best places in Munich to discover new bands?

In the clubs, on the radio, at festivals – there are so many places in Munich to discover good new music. You just have to keep your eyes and ears open and go out.

How would you define the music scene in Munich?

Lively and motivated. There are just a lot of good things going on in Munich, but they have to meet even more support from the city. Compared to other big cities, we are still lagging far behind and it is time for the city to recognize the potential of pop culture and subculture and, accordingly, to promote and advance it.

*More information and tickets at Puls Open Air Festival.

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