“What is particularly enjoyable about the Yellow Lounge is that it is not at all intimidating. You don’t need to know anything about classical music to feel at home. There is none of the snobbery associated with the genre …”
The Guardian (London)
It began with the inspired idea of introducing hardcore clubbers to the best in live classical music. Deutsche Grammophon’s Yellow Lounge was born in 2001 in Germany’s coolest techno clubs. The concept has since grown to become a fixture of the club scene in Germany and beyond. Crowds in close proximity to performers, video projections and vibrant lighting all help create the unique Yellow Lounge atmosphere – informal yet intensely focused on the music.
Since launch Yellow Lounge has organised around 130 club nights, each attracting up to 1000 guests and a massive traditional and social media following. As the Berliner Zeitung has reported, “Over the years the series has developed its own dynamic. Not only has it proved how well classical music can work outside traditional concert halls, it’s also given rise to an increasing number of fruitful exchanges between electronic and so-called ‘serious’ music. Works by Mahler or Satie, for example, have been reworked very creatively and idiosyncratically by techno producers such as Matthew Herbert, Jimi Tenor and Ricardo Villalobos.”
Every event features live sets from outstanding classical musicians, rich DJ mixes of compositions old and new, and freshly created visuals from international VJs. The format has been exported widely, reaching clubs and other venues from Berlin, Brussels, Madrid and London to Buenos Aires, Tokyo, Sydney and New York. Its reputation is rubbing off on traditional venues too – Berlin’s prestigious Konzerthaus played host to the classical club experience in February 2015, when it was transformed for the night from conventional concert hall to Yellow Lounge haven.
“Yellow Lounge is a unique concept,” commented Anne-Sophie Mutter following her appearance at Berlin’s Neue Heimat venue in May 2015. “It introduces young people to great music, in intimate settings that really bring performers and listeners close together.”
The list of Yellow Lounge performers includes such classical stars as violinists Anne-Sophie Mutter, Hilary Hahn, Daniel Hope, Gidon Kremer, Menahem Pressler and pianists Hélène Grimaud, Alice Sara Ott, Daniil Trifonov and Vikingur Olafsson, the Emerson String Quartet and the Rundfunkchor Berlin. The events have also played host to pioneering neoclassical composers, Max Richter, Ludovico Einaudi, Ólafur Arnalds, Hania Rani and Dobrawa Czocher among them, and cutting-edge DJs Clé and Eva Be, Marc Hype, Tobi Neumann, Alex Barck and Arnold Kasar.