Sónar 2012: Activities behind the main line-up

By Garbiñe Jaurrieta. June 14, 2012


June is well under way, the heat is rising and Sónar is here. Like every year, and it’s been 19, Barcelona becomes for a long weekend the hub of electronic music. Technology and artistic creation go hand in hand in a festival that not only stands out for the concerts by giants like New Order or media celebrities like Lana del Rey but for the activities and exhibitions it holds.

No less important than the music shows at night is the SonarPro, a meeting point in Sónar that aims to be to the creative industries what the festival already is to the electronic music scene: an international benchmark for the latest innovations, trends and productions. With a small difference: not all the activities in SonarPro are open to the general public. Talks, debates and live experimentations are only for a few accredited professionals of this vibrant scene in New Media Art. 

Here goes a small selection of the most interesting new features and activities of this SonarPro 2012:

Musicians go to the cinema

Cinema, television and electronics, music and audiovisuals. A close relationship that will be discussed on Thursday 14 at 4 pm in MACBA’s auditorium. Among the guest speakers is Adam Smith (UK), director of “Don´t Think” the documentary of the concert that the Chemical Brothers –Sónar veterans and pioneers in electronic music marketing– gave at the Fuji Rock in Japan. An inconvenient: to attend you need an accreditation.

Richie Hawtin presents Twitter DJ

The Canadian DJ Richie Hawtin presents on Saturday 16 his project: Twitter DJ. With this tool all his Twitter followers should be able to listen to the songs or tracks he is playing in his concerts in real time. An experiment that will be put into practice a few hours before his show in Sónar by Night. Maybe this will replace those noisy calls from friends from the concerts we would have liked to go but that for X reasons we didn’t make it. Accreditation needed.

Pollywogs, by Roland Olbeter

Now even robots play classical music. The German artist Roland Olbeter has created “Pollywogs”, a sound installation that will also be open to the public for all three days of the festival and that basically involves five robots that interpret scores by Bach, Schubert or Chopin. 2manydjs are not the only ones to combine technology and classical music.

Music Hack Day

Ninety hackers and ten digital artists will meet up in the Centro de Cultura Contemporánea de Barcelona (CCCB) to create new musical applications and hacks. How? By working non-stop for 24 hours. In the end, a jury will choose the three best creations according to their “technological innovation, originality and market potential”. Unlike other activities, the “Music Hack Day” isn’t restricted to Sónar: the “marathon” takes place every month in a different city. An indispensable event for these hackers who, thanks to the latest technological innovations, make it possible for the electronic enthusiast to dance year after year to the rhythm of synthesizers.

Today, the future starts in Barcelona. 

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