What Does Freedom Sound Like?

Curating Diversity Patt 2

What does Freedom Sound Like

What Does Freedom Sound Like?

6–9 May 2021, Symposium Part II

Continuing and building on from September 2020, the second part of the Curating Diversity symposium invited participants to embark on a collective reflection process in giving space to sounds of freedom that are continuously being co-created – beyond Eurocentric power structures and thought patterns.

The participatory Open Space format supported a more practice-oriented approach, focusing on a peer-led exchange of knowledge via collective listening sessions and workshops.

The symposium brought together diverse actors to explore the development of multiple non-colonial music and sound practices. The aim was to form new alliances and derive measures for action together, keeping in mind how these can be implemented sustainably.

Advisory Board:

The symposium was developed in collaboration with an Advisory Board consisting of Memory Biwa, Du Yun, Candice Hopkins, Lee Walters and meLê yamomo.

Listening Sessions:

Listening sessions with Hardi Kurda, Robert Machiri & Memory Biwa, Marshall Trammell, Joseph Kamaru, Ariel Orah, Atiyyah Khan & Grant Jurius, Elsa M’Bala and Raven Chacon


Opening Concert for Memories in Music:
Kirsten Reese: Cobourg Nets, Ensemble Adapter, world premiere
Erkki Veltheim, mit Daniel Wilfred: October 19th, 1845, Ensemble Adapter, world premiere

Filmpremiere Avant Joik / Memories in Music:
Performance Annette Schmucki: repeat one_two dachversion, Ernst Surberg, world premiere
Film Avant Joik, Katarina Barruk, Maja S. K. Ratkje, Matti Aikio, world premiere
Performance Spirit Weather: Altitude, Tony Buck,Tony Elieh, world premiere

What is Open Space? 

  • At the beginning of the Open Space the participants themselves decide what will be worked on.  
  • Every issue of concern to anybody can be raised.  
  • Work will be done in break-out groups – size, approach, length will be decided by participants.  
  • Participants make notes on their findings, these will be published during the event.  
  • Everybody receives a Book of Proceedings with all reports.  
  • Active participation and getting the most out of the event is supported by being present through the entire event.  


Van Outernational

What does Freedom Sound Like

Advisory Board - meeting notes

Thoughts and recommendations that came out of meetings held with the Advisory Board before the event on May 6-7. These meetings were long and intense; sometimes uncomfortable. Ideas were discussed freely, without any agenda.

What does Freedom Sound Like

Format and Inspiration

The Curating Diversity symposium, taking place online on Thursday May 6th and Friday May 7th is organized as a participatory, “open space” symposium where our ambition is to approach, discuss and process issues related to decolonizing and developing non-colonial ways of curating contempora...

What does Freedom Sound Like


Many thanks to all for bringing your expertise and experience around the table and engaging in such fruitful, constructive and open exchanges throughout the two days of the symposium “Curating Diversity: What does freedom sound like?”. We are grateful for the valuable and insightful discus...

  • Diversity

For further reading

Soundings Bild von Sound Across

Diversity and Decolonisation

In the past few years, field notes has organised numerous conferences and further education courses on the topics of anti-racism and diversity development as well as the decolonisation of contemporary music. Many of the events were able to be documented on video or in writing and can be vi...

Jeanine Meerapfel at Curating Diversity

Programm »Curating Diversity«

The symposium Curating Diversity in 2020 fell in the middle of the pandemic and therefore had to be planned in a hybrid way. The advantage today is that the entire programme of various keynotes and panels has been recorded and can be viewed here.

Curating Diversity

Curating Diversity 2020

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 cu...