CTM 2019 – Persistence

CTM 2019 Theme

As polarising stances and simplistic rhetoric continue to proliferate at alarming rates, we are faced with the difficulties of resisting them and the rifts they create. The challenge lies in cultivating persistence without tumbling into rigidity or dogma—in cultivating a steadfastness through a recognition of diversity, difference, and hybridity while also embracing fluidity, uncertainty, and flux.

With Persistence, CTM 2019 examines the aesthetic and societal potentials and pains of perseverance, and of its opposite: the transient and the provisional, and considers the struggles that come with balancing continuity and changeability.

Music and art today are characterised by continuous searching, open-ended experimentation, and the speculative nature of hypotheses, which allows for a positive adoption of uncertainty. A hypothesis is always open to being corrected or discarded. It requires constant questioning and exchange: Listening, critical discussion, and doubt are inherent components of this process, as are sensing and recognising inconsistencies and differences.

A decisive difference between artistic and scientific hypotheses is that art and music take subjective feelings, personal experiences, empathy, the imaginary, and desire as their starting points. Artistic propositions can therefore never be completely eliminated, and because they need to be experienced, they offer transitory moments of radical pluralisation. Thinking and acting on this basis is a form of resistance against essentialism and naturalistic misconceptions, against the absolute, and unshakable identities, and also against the corrosive powers of uncertainty. So, can music and art provide us with methods to move towards new societal horizons? Can we maintain a productive, idealistic kind of perseverance—a persistence of the transitory?

The persistence of transience is not only a fitting allegory for CTM Festival’s 20-year anniversary, it also describes an attempt to think of collectiveness, community, and subcultures as fleeting, experience-based associations. It’s a framework for considering them as testing grounds for collective speculation rather than rigid or exclusive constructs. CTM has always strived to provide a forum that facilitates exchange and networking between different creative communities, while at the same time fostering open spaces of possibility that also allow those who are non-associated to navigate the interstices and try things out.

In order to keep such spaces open, however, we must also insist on stable economic conditions. To survive as an artist and to maintain communities and spaces of open discourse make for great challenges worldwide. We urgently need concepts, tools and structures that enable music and cultural creators to continuously experiment in a self-determined manner and to freely associate themselves. CTM’s 20th anniversary edition—which was for a long time unimaginable to us – brings together many actors and initiatives across music, culture, and technology to imagine, discuss and celebrate open and pluralistic structures.

What the Press Said

«Dance music is not in crisis, it’s more hopeful than ever.»
→ FACT Magazine, John Twells

«CTM, celebrating its 20th edition this year, is an integral part of Berlin’s cultural furniture, adventurous in its quest for ideas that no one else would consider, let alone have the gall to execute.»
Crack Magazine, Gabriel Szatan

«The extent of the programme means it's impossible to hit it all. But rather than sweating over schedules paralysed by potential FOMO, you traverse through the festival taking in as much as you can, energised by the knowledge that wherever you land will bring an experience that fills you with inspiration. And when we are inspired, we persist.»
→ Mixmag, Patrick Hinton


CTM 2019 – PERSISTENCE – Trailer made by Oliver Thomas and Marius Rehmet of Vojd. Music by Slikback.


CTM Festival's 20th anniversary edition took place from 25 January – 3 February 2018 in Berlin venues HAU – Hebbel am Ufer, Berghain, Griessmuehle, Festsaal Kreuzberg, SchwuZ, Paloma Bar, MONOM at Funkhaus Berlin, nGbK, DAAD, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Heimathafen Neukölln, and Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien.

Under the title Persistence, CTM 2019 examined the state of music and sound practice in the face of rapidly proliferating polarising stances and simplistic rhetoric. Can music and art provide us with methods to move towards new societal horizons? Can we maintain a productive, idealistic kind of perseverance—a persistence of the transitory?

Close to 400 artists and participants from 41 countries contributed to over 239 performances and projects that made up the CTM 2018 programme, which also included the premiere of numerous commissioned works. Live performances of Linn da Quebrada's influential Pajubá graced HAU1; the Nusasonic initiative, a collaboration with Yes No Klub (Yogyakarta, Indonesia), WSK Festival for the Recently Possible (Manila, Philippines), and Playfreely/Blackkaji (Singapore) along with the Goethe-Institut, enabled exchange with various sonic cultures from Southeast Asia. The SET x CTM collaboration enabled the Berlin premieres of a number of special commissions; a Skatehalle arrived in the Halle (am Berghain); and a collaboration with MONOM realised special performances in 4DSOUND.

Talks, workshops, panels, and film screenings, in addition to the annual festival magazine, made up the 8-day Transfer programme. The 7th edition of the collaborative MusicMaker’s Hacklab for music technology took place, as did the annual Research Networking Day, a Network Speed Dating session, a collaboration with Raster at nGbK, and the CTM exhibition, this time entitled Persisting Realities.

As always, CTM was held in parallel to and in collaboration with transmediale – festival for art and digital culture which took place at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt. CTM and transmediale also hosted the citywide Vorspiel initiative together with over 40 local venues and organisations.

Visual Identity

↑ CTM 2019 exhibition booklet, poster, flyer, magazine, and merch. Design by Marius Rehmet (VOJD).

100% Halal • 700 Bliss • 9T Antiope

ĀBNAMĀ • Actress + Young Paint • Aditya Utama • AJA • Ali Demirel • Alobhe • Ambátt • Anastasia Kristensen • Anja Schwanhäußer • Andrea Neumann • Andreas Siagian • Angel • Ani Klang • Anita Jori • Anna Leevia • ARK • Artur Mendes • A Tribe Called Red • Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman

BadSista • Basel Abbas & Ruanne Abou-Rahme • Bendik Giske • Bestial Mouths • Bhaki Prasetyo • BlackBlackGold • The Black Madonna • bod  [包家巷] • Boo Lean • Brat Star • Brandon LaBelle • Buttechno • Byetone

C-drík • Caliph8 & Nonplus • Carmen16 • Casimir Geelhoed • Casual Gabberz • Cheryl Ong • Christine McCharen-Tran • Christopher Bauder • Christoph Jacke • Claudia Priscilla • Cocaine Piss • Colin Self • CORIN • Craig Schuftan • Croatian Amor • CURL

Dahlia Borsche • Dasha Rush • Dariush Sardari • Deena Abdelwahed • Derek Debru • Des Martin • dieb13 • DJ AZF • dj. flugvél og geimskip • DJ Marcelle • DJ Occult • DJ Rachael • Död Mark • Dorine van Meel • Drew McDowall

Eartheater • Elia Rediger • Emma Robertson • Erwan Keravec • Eva-Maria Bertschy

Fatima Al Qadiri • Federico Zonno • Frank Bretschneider • Freak de l’Afrique • Frikimo

Gabber Modus Operandi • Gafacci • Gazelle Twin • Geoff Stahl • Gigsta • Giorgi Ujmadjuridze • Goro • Grischa Lichtenberger

Hanna Bächer • Helena Nikonole • Hops • hvl

IC3PEAK • Infinite Livez • Iron Sight • Israel Martinez & LaR Ensemble

Jacolby Satterwhite • Jerusalem In My Heart • Joe Muggs • Johannes Paul Raether • John Bence • John Connell • John Twells • Jon Davies • Juba • Juliana Huxtable • Julia Tieke

Kai Whiston • Kancheli • Kanta Horio • Khyam Allami • Katarina Barruk • Keira Sinclair • Kiko Goifman • Kikelomo • KILLA • Kilo Vee • Kode9 • Kok Siew-Wai • Kristiina Männikkö • Kyoka

Larry • Leevisa • Lightning Bolt • Linn da Quebrada • Lintang Radittya • Lisa Blanning • Liss C. Werner • Liz Pelly • Lotic • LSDXOXO • Luciana Lamothe • Lucy Railton

Machine Woman • Maja S. K. Ratkje • Marcus Gammel • Maria W Horn • Marta Zapparoli • Martin Tétreault • Marylou • Mat Dryhurst • Maxime Faget • Melanie Schiller • MCZO & Duke • Mieko Suzuki • Mika Taanila • Mika Vainio • Mina & Bryte • Miss Djax • Mo Loschelder • Moritz Stumm • Moroto Heavy Industries

Nai • NDRX • Nguyen Hong Giang • noctulicents • Nguyễn + Transitory • Nik Nowak

Olivia Jack • Opium Hum

PAARTANZ • Pangaea • Paul Rekret • Pedro Marum • Pedro Oliveira • Perera Elsewhere • Perila • Peter Kirn • Phatstoki • Pininga • Pisitakun • Pouja Pour-Amin Ensemble • Prison Religion • Putas Vampiras

quest?onmarc • Qumasiquamé

Rabih Beaini • Raed Yassin • Rainer Kohlberger • Ramberto Agozalie • Rambo • REKA • Resom • Riar Rizaldi • Rie Nakajima • Riobamba • Robert Lippok • Robin James • Rosa Reitsamer • RUI HO • Rully Shabara • Ryoichi Kurokawa

Sabine Erklentz • Salomé Voegelin • Sara Fumaça b2b Foresta • Sarah-Joy Lynch • Sofie Birch • Saoirse • Sarah Farina • Sarana • Schtum • Sentimental Rave • Setabuhan • Sho Madjozi • Sick Girls • Signe Wehl • Skatebård • Slikback • Sodadosa • Sote • Spela Petric • S Ruston • Stanislav Glazov • Stefan Fraunberger • Stefanie Alisch • Svani

Tabitha Rezaire • Tama Sumo • Tania Candiani • Tarawangsawelas • Tatiana Heuman • Temp-Illusion • Tengal • Thomas Ankersmit • Thomas Jepsen • Tiernan Cross • Tim Tetzner • Tirzah

Ursula O’Kuighttons • Uta

Valentin Tszin • Vanligt Folk • Vivian Caccuri

Wallis • Walter Vinyl • Wok the Rock • Wolfgang Kaleck


Yair Elazar Glotman & Mats Erlandsson • Yoshitaka Hikawa • Yuen Chee Wai • Yves Tumor

Zanias • Zenna Fiscella • Zitto • Zoo • Zuri-Maria Daiß