Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Björk to open Barcelona’s ‘Sónar’ music festival


Barcelona (ACN).- Björk, the famous Icelandic singer, will perform an exclusive four-hour DJ session for Sónar festival’s opening night on June 14. The same day, an ‘immersive’ exhibition dedicated to the artist (‘Digital Björk’) will open its doors at Barcelona’s Center of Contemporary Culture (CCCB) and the artist will give a talk at Sónar+D. The 24th edition of the Sónar festival will open Wednesday, June 14 with Björk’s DJ performance and close on Sunday, June 18 in Barcelona’s Auditori with a Nico Muhly concert accompanied by the German orchestral group Stargaze. As for the festival’s musical program, this year’s edition comprises of outstanding names such as Justice, Nicolas Jaar, Moderat, Masters at Work, Arca & Jesse Kanda, Soulwax, Dj Shado or De la Soul among others.

Sónar organizers waited until Tuesday to announce the name of the big international artist of this year’s edition of the festival: the Icelandic singer Björk. The famous artist will indeed have an outstanding presence in the festival, crowning the 24th edition of the already legendary festival at three separate venues. Björk will be the lead artist of an exclusive four-hour inaugural DJ session at the Fira Montjüic on Wednesday, June 14. This will be a rare opportunity for her fans to enjoy an intense sonic adventure of the disparate genres that have influenced her career, from experimental electronica to traditional music. Entry tickets for this session were available on Tuesday for subscribed festival visitors and on Thursday they will be available to the general public at 35 euros.

On June 14, Barcelona’s Centre of Contemporary Culture (CCCB) will inaugurate a big exhibition dedicated to the artist, ‘Digital Björk’. It was coproduced with several international visual artists and programmers and will be installed in collaboration with the city, the events company, Sold Out, and the festival. The exhibition invites visitors to submerge themselves in the creative world of the Icelandic artist, with virtual reality as a new feature. Performance, cinema, installation, video, and interaction are the elements of the exhibition, which show several works by Björk in collaboration with artists such as Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry, Warren du Prees, and Nick Thornton Jones. The exhibition has traveled to different cities such as Sidney, Montreal, London, and Reykjavik and will be in Barcelona until September 24.

Finally, and just before her DJ performance on opening night, Björk will take part in Sónar+D, the professional new technologies conference, where she will give a talk about her ties to the audiovisual world. 

Sónar week

The Sónar music festival organizers also presented the program for the 24th edition of Sónar Week, which will attract thousands of national and international music and digital art lovers from June 13–18. The daily programming includes three conferences at the Fira Montjuïc during the week (June 15, 16, and 17), while Sónar+D, the professional conference for creative technologies has been expanded to one more weekday this year and will start on Wednesday, June 14, with exclusive access for accredited visitors. 

As part of the festival, on June 13, a big exhibition dedicated to Brian Eno will open its doors at the Arts Santa Mònica, as well as the Nesta conference at the CosmoCaixa museum. But before that, on May 25, the Design Hub Barcelona will open the international exhibition ‘David Bowie is’.

Beyond the precincts of ‘Sónar Day and Night’, the festival program will also include a retrospective of the recently deceased Catalan artist Tres, called ‘Blackout’ at La Virreina; ‘Wave Shift’, Mark Bain's sound installation in the Pavilion Mies van der Rohe; and ‘Epic’, the experimental dance show at the Mercat de les Flors.

As for the musical program of the festival, this edition consists of outstanding names such as Justice, Nicolas Jaar, Moderat, Masters at Work, Arca & Jesse Kanda, Soulwax, Dj Shado, and De la Soul among many others.

The final curtain of this year’s Sónar will fall on Sunday, June 18, with Nicho Muhlyin’s piano concert accompanied by the German orchestral group Stargaze interpreting David Lang’s ‘Death speaks’ in Barcelona’s Auditori.

Sónar goes international

This year the Sónar festival’s international editions started off strong with more than 25,000 people in Hong Kong, Istanbul, and Reykjavik. The festival was held for the first time in Hong Kong, with 5,000 people attending. In parallel Sonar was also debuting in Istanbul from March 25–26, and completely sold out attracting more than 9,000 people. Sónar+D, the professional fair, was introduced in the two cities for the first time with an extensive program comprised of 30 activities such as workshops, talks, and exhibitions. In Reykjavik, in turn, the festival celebrated its 5th edition in February with more than 11,000 people attending. Consolidated artists like DJ Shadow, Gilles Peterson, and Dave Clarke, as well as emergent talents such as Lady Leshurr, Kingdom and Evian Christ, Moderat, Róisín Murphy, Nina Kraviz, and Fatboy Slim were among the various artists participating in this year’s international Sónar editions.

After the Barcelona edition in June, the Sonar festival will follow its international itinerary on to the cities of Buenos Aires, Bogotá, and Santiago de Chile.

  • bjorkprimavera

  • Björk has cancelled her concert at Barcelona's Primaver Sound (by Björk / Primavera Sound)