OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign up, Login or Learn more

Bearpit Karaoke in a stone amphitheatre in Berlin on Sunday afternoons

This is a weekly event in the summer. Weather permitting, people fetch up around 3 p.m. and anybody is invited to take the stage for a few minutes, and show those gathered there what they can do with a backing track and a microphone.

Photo of Niklas Jansen
5 3

Written by

This is a weekly event in the summer. Weather permitting, people fetch up around 3 p.m. and anybody is invited  to take the stage for a few minutes, and show those gathered there what they can do with a backing track and a microphone.This is a weekly event in the summer. Weather permitting, people fetch up around 3 p.m. and anybody is invited to take the stage for a few minutes, and show those gathered there what they can do with a backing track and a microphone.

Bearpit singers nearly always get huge rounds of supportive applause, especially when they're good, but also if they simply come across as nice people.

5 comments

Join the conversation:

Comment
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Hi Niklas,

I really love the amphitheatre Karaoke! Actually, I wanted to post it myself and was just checking if somebody else did… but here we go, all the better!

There are a few things that I want to add or emphasise about this project which I make it truely great:

• it is completely self-organised by a guy with a bike (Joe Hatchiban)
• he built a mobile soundsystem on his bike to use infrastructure of the city that was already there, the amphitheatre in this case, but which was practically unused before
• it is free and open for everybody
• the usual border between audience and performer does not exist here
• he managed to establish a tradition for people to go there on Sundays, at the same time creating a sense of belonging / identity for the neigbourhood
• it goes well together with a nearby fleemarket, and other microbusiness, selling food and drinks around the event

-> all organised bottom-up, thats the beauty of it.

At some point earlier this year, he had some trouble with the city and the license he needs to do this, but in the end, the city was supportive.

-> Cities should be as supportive as possible to foster such initiatives that are free and open for all. There is always the danger of too much red tape but this is a story where the city, after some hesitation, understood the positive impact it can have.

Here is the official website of the project:
http://www.bearpitkaraoke.com

Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Despite the events popularity, i have heard the local council have made it harder for Joe, limiting the days he can hold the event in the Mauerpark, blocking his usual days and trying to decrease its regularity.

Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Hi Steve,
you are right, the counci intervened because of, as they argued, to much trash, not enough toilets and because Joe Hitchiban was not preventing hawkers from selling beverages… But the city revoked their intervention because of the popularity of the event. Everything back to normal as for now. Here is an article about that, unfortunately only in German:
http://www.tagesspiegel.de/berlin/prenzlauer-berg-mauerpark-karaoke-wieder-jeden-sonntag/6717772.html

Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Good to know. It did seem counter intuitive, but German bureaucracy does tend to defy common sense.

View all comments