Como uma alegoria analógica sobre o amor, a musica electrónica e o movimento relacional com o planeta, numa trajectória itinerante passo ante passo sobre o desígnio da tribo que ouve e dança a realização primeira da expressão humana, o movimento.
Love Parade <3
The biggest dance event in the world peaked in 1999, when an estimated one and a half million ravers flocked onto the streets of Berlin for one almighty celebration of love and hedonism. It was a fitting end to a decade which saw dance music explode from the underground and dominate airwaves and dance floors alike for ten heady years. As the millenium ushered in a new era however the Love Parade, and dance music itself, began to decline in popularity. In 2002 and 2003 a mere 750,000 turned up for the event and sponsors began to get cold feet. When two major backers pulled out, organisers were forced to cancel the 2004 and 2005 Parades. Only time would tell whether the Berlin Love Parade was a spent force – a dinosaur of a past age; or a sleeping knight, ready to awake when the world needs him most!
The Love Parade began life as something of a political movement way back in the summer of ’89, and four months before the fall of the Berlin wall. It was organised on the initiative of Matthias Roeingh, aka “Dr. Motte”, a DJ of the Berlin underground scene who wanted to use the international language of music as a medium for spreading peace and love, and promoting world unity. In his words: “Music knows no boundaries or nationalities.” Some have argued that that these philanthropic sentiments were always secondary to the primary purpose of throwing a massive drug-fuelled, techno orgy.
Whatever the original motives, the Love Parade grew exponentially from its humble beginnings in 1989 – with one truck and 150 people – into the world’s biggest dance festival. It became an event that completely took over Berlin for one day of every summer, right up until 2003. In fact by 1996 the event had already grown so big that organisers moved it from the Ku’damm (Kurf?rstendamm) shopping avenue in Charlottenburg to the Tiegarten Park, where the expansive Strasse Des 17. Juni could better accomodate the masses.
The Love Parade usually started about 2pm, going on to the evening and then splitting into innumerable after parties at night as the whole city was transformed into a vast club. At its peak the Parade featured fifty gigantic trucks where up to 250 DJs would blast out house and techno to the expectant revellers. Two common tactics for enjoying the day were to either walk beside a certain truck that you liked the sound of, or to stay still and soak up the different vibes of each van and its followers. The liberal, hedonistic crowd soon became famous for their inventive dress sense, exhibitionistic – and often kinky – tendencies, and for their ‘back-in-the-day’ rave costumes, which would include furry leg-warmers, glow-sticks and of course plenty of whistles. The festival’s original cries for love and tolerance were rarely impeached and incidences of crime were always surprisingly low for such a big event.
Despite it’s enormous success in the ’90s, in the mid-noughties the Love Parade was in serious danger of submerging completely. Originally billed as a political demonstration, the German state had been legally responsible for policing and clearing up after the event. However in 2001, after years of legal wrangling, the courts ruled that the Parade had become a commercial event and was responsible for paying for itself. At first organisers rose to the challenge and sponsors were found, but its declining popularity and perceived significance meant that, since 2004, the required capital could not be raised. There were many that thought the Love Parade would never raise its magnanimous head in Berlin again…
Thank the Gods above though, these pessimistic forecasts were banished in 2006 when the Love Parade made a surprise – and triumpant comeback. The organisers found new sponsorship and a staggering 1,200,000 people took to the capital’s streets to celebrate the event’s return. It seems that there is hope yet for peace, love and hedonism on Planet Earth!
Finally, if you can’t make it to Berlin for the 2017 Love parade, then just remember that the legacy of the Love Parade now stretches out to a number of amazing cities around the world: Santiago, Acapulco, San Francisco and Tel-Aviv were amongst hosts for parties in 2005 and 2006!