Already for the seventh time the zoo of Münster opened the doors on May 6th and 7th 2017 for international street art. Once again 30 acts from many different countries performed their shows for more than 7.500 visitors. They provided a varied program of music, theatre, comedy, juggling or artistry and made sure large enthusiasm by young and old. In this unique environment even elephants were dancing, gorillas were drumming and giraffes were looking at the spectacle from above. The audience enjoyed a unique visit at the zoo!
Idea of the festival
Among a lot of other plans we had the idea to organize a festival with all the artists who present their craftsmanship to the audience on the streets. During their performances they collect money in a hat, and all too often it is a 'tough go' to live on that.
Nevertheless there are many single artists and groups who are exceptional at what they do, and some careers have started 'on the road'.
We have been inspired by (fortunately in the meantime) existing miscellaneous festivals all over Europe and collected countless addresses of street musicians, street artists, jugglers, clowns and comedians. We spotted tremendous performances at Piccadilly Circus in London, at the Ramblas in Barcelona or at the Festival de Théatre de Rue in the french town of Aurillac. The funniest and most relaxing moments of getting to know each other were on bridges, over the river Seine in Paris, the river Liffey in Dublin, the river Vltava in Prague or the river Aare in swiss Berne.
But not until during a conversation with Jörg Adler, the managing director of the Münster all-weather zoo, did the idea evolve: Why not organizing a festival at the zoo with artists performing in various zoo areas? At least the animals would have fun with that!
The artists' first reactions were that of caution, an occasion such as this hadn’t been attempted before. But after some thought first questions were asked, such as: Is it possible to perform beside the lions' cage? Are elephants able to trumpet Jazz? Are chimpanzees allowed to drum? Do meerkats start the Vienna Waltz with their left paw? Should be funny to juggle together with seals!
And like the animals from all over the world living together at the zoo, we were fascinated by the idea of inviting international artists from as many different countries as possible to our festival, to represent a high bandwidth of worldwide culture.
Programme of the festival
A wide range of buskers and groups of street performers will be invited. The Festival committee decides not only on the basis of artistic aspects, but also with a view to cultural diversity, for example, just a bunch of jugglers could be a bit boring in the long run. The groups or individual artists will repeatedly perform on Saturday and Sunday at different places. Thereby overlaps in time will be avoided so that spectators have the opportunity to really watch all performers.
A German proverb says: "Das Brot des Künstlers ist der Applaus" (Applause is the bread of an artist). But, in addition, the audience should express its appreciation by contributing to the 'hat collection', which is typical of street art performances. The special service: At the zoo's box office rouleaus [rolls with coined money] can be acquired. Furthermore, we would like to promote intercultural exchanges by offering foreign artists accommodation in Muenster host families.
The Festival will be organized by Jovel GmbH and CulturContor Nicolas Leibel for the Allwetterzoo Münster GmbH. To break even, sponsors are invited to take part in sponsoring the Festival. Requests concerning this matter we kindly ask to address to the festival committee.