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DR 2020 Activities

Perseides and Firefly Activities

Press Image 1: Radar Datscha © Gabi Schaffner

“Listening to the Universe – Radiophonien des Alls“

A radio art festival by Datscha Radio
2:04 pm, August 11 until 2 pm, August 13, 2020

Every year in August, the Northern Hemisphere’s night sky is graced by meteor showers – the Perseids. Datscha Radio is using this astronomical spectacle as the departure point for a 48-hour festival of radio art. The broadcast starts at moonset on August 11 at 2:04 pm.

Datscha Radio – a non-commercial, independent, nomadic and interdisciplinary Berlin radio art initiative – has been engaged in expanding the culture of radio creation since 2012. It aims to create new listening experiences beyond the dichotomies of culture/nature and sender/receiver. It is transmitted from an allotment garden in the north of Berlin.

Listening to the Universe – Radiophonien des Alls“ is dedicated to themes and music inspired by the phenomenon of the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. Every year, around August 12, as the Earth draws close to the comet’s orbit, fragments of the comet fall into the Earth’s atmosphere at high speeds and light up in the form of shooting stars.

With a broad spectrum of topics – from cosmogonical myths to the signals of meteor detectors, from starlight-inspired violin improvisations to experimental horoscopes – Datscha Radio hopes to trace the path of these ‘falling stars’ to their manifestations in space and matter as the fictions and artistic responses that are bound up with them.

Where: On UKW 88,4 in Berlin and 90,7 in Potsdam, over mini FM on location and on the Internet via datscharadio.de and fr-bb.org.
The following radio stations will be transmitting Datscha Radio’s programme: Soundart Radio (Devon/UK), Radio Lora (Zurich/CH), Radio free FM (Ulm), Radio Blau (Leipzig), Archipel Stations (Berlin).

“Listening to the Universe – Radiophonien des Alls“ has been imagined and organised by Gabi Schaffner, Kate Donovan, Niki Matita and Helen Thein. Funded by the Amt für Weiterbildung und Kultur, Berlin Pankow, by Musikfonds e.V. by means of the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and Media (BKM), and by the Hans und Charlotte Krull Foundation.

Further information:


Gabi Schaffner (artistic direction), info@datscharadio.de, mobile0152 233 61 855
Helen Thein (press spokeswoman), thein@datscharadio.de, mobile0151 750 34 547

Link to PRESS Files.

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Open Call Datscha Radio: Listening to the Universe – Radiophonien des Alls

Call 1: Audio Works
Call 2: Telegram to the Stars
(Contact phone number published: 8th August on this website)

Every year, from the 17th of July to the 24th of August the nightskies of the Western hemisphere are graced with the meteor showers of the Perseides. Datscha Radio takes this astronomic spectacle as a point of departure for a 48 hour live radio art festival.

Datscha Radio’s 2020 event “Listening to the Universe” explores radiophonic, musical and theme-based phenomena caused by the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle.  When the earth crosses the orbit of the comet, each year around the 12th of August, comet particles enter the earth’s atmosphere at high speed and light up as meteors.

From cosmogonic storytelling to the signals of meteor detectors, from starlight inspired violin improvisations to fancy horoscopes, Datscha Radio hopes to trace the matter of, in between and around the fallings stars. 

We will broadcast online on datscharadio.de, via micro FM in the garden and – for the greatest part – on FM on 88.4 in Berlin and 90.7 in Potsdam.

The Perseides are Calling!

With “Listening to the Universe – Radiophonien des Alls Datscha Radio wants explore transpositions of the universe into sound.

From the setting of the moon on the 11th of August at 2:04 pm until 2pm sharp on the 13th of August 2020, we will be broadcasting directly from a Berlin allotment garden in the North of Berlin. 

What are the sounds that tickle our awareness into new states of being and perception? How can we shift from Western-based knowledge culture to a diversified multiverse?
Datscha Radio wants to find out – and needs your radiophonic input and messages.

Call 1: Listening to the Universe

How can we “reflect” the universe? What is the sound of stars falling, the chirping of matter, the rumble of transformation? How can we tune in to particular matter? What are the intricacies of sky media (bodies, thoughts, transmissions, that navigate and move through the space above)? How can we create visionary stories that embody alternative futures. Let us travel to distant planets, subterranean galaxies, visionary politics of the mind and body.

Let us broadcast your ‘radiating’ compositions and sonic musings together under the falling stars of the Datscha garden. Datscha Radio asks you to focus on visions of the universe and their possible metamorphoses into sound, language and music: slow time, music of the spheres, non-human communications, poetry, dark and light matter, alternative storytelling… you name it.

  • Please send your files via wetransfer toinfo@datscharadio.de.
  • Please provide two or three lines (400 spaces max) each about the piece and its relevance for the theme, and yourself, including a website if desired. 
  • Label your tracks as: name_surname_title
  • Add a line as to whether you agree with having your broadcast work archived with Datscha Radio’s online documentation. 
  • Please put “Listening to the Universe” as a subject line.
  • Deadline: Call 1: Please submit your audio piece by the 8th of August 2020.

Call 2: Telegram to the Stars

Have you got your wishes ready for the falling stars? We’ll help them travel the aether and further and further…
Datscha Radio hopes to gather a continuous assemblage of your audio or text messages to the stars that will be played or read out over the course of our 48 hour transmission. The universe will listen, be assured!


Call 1: Please submit your audio piece until the 8th of August 2020.

Call 2: Please send your wishes, poems, dream-states and messages in audio or text to the Datscha Radio line, which will be made public on the website from the 8th of August. You may send ahead and during the festival but no later than the 13th of August, 1pm.


Our Datscha Radio program will grow with the flow of the events. There is no fixed time schedule. You’ll find a list of all participating artists on our website in due time.

Datscha Radio can be heard on

  • datscharadio.de
  • on colaboradio.org
  • in collaboration with other radio stations and projects (if interested, please, let us know)

What can Datscha Radio offer?
Datscha Radio works on a voluntary basis. Therefore, unfortunately we can neither pay for any costs, nor distribute any production fees. 

What we have to offer is:

  • a platform and experimental site for acoustic super novae
  • the broadcast of your contributions locally, via stream and on FM
  • lasting sustainability: the documentation of “Listening to the Universe” will be archived, for you to enjoy and share.


Datscha Radio is a non-commercial art and culture project. The copyright for submitted files remains with the artists. The legal model that we are using is the Creative Commons License (see http://creativecommons.org/learn/licenses).

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On Tuesday, 23rd of June, one hour of Datscha Radio Taipei will be broadcast. The excerpt is taken from DRT #4, Species and Environment, originally produced on the 23rd of February 2019.
Playing at: 12-1pm; as well as at 3-4pm and 8-9pm
At: https://teslafm.net/

We’ll be listening to Margaret Shiu of Bamboo Curtain Studio and Huang Chen-Chi, who is playing the erhu, a traditional Chinese violin.
Produced by Gabi Schaffner.

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Datscha Radio can happily announce that funding is secured for its radiophonic stargazing event “In Between… The Stars”, on occasion of the Perseides’ falling stars in mid-August 2020. The project will be supported by the Amt for Weiterbildung und Kultur, Berlin-Pankow, and the Hans and Charlotte Krull foundation.

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Datscha Radio on Air. Photo: ©Gabi Schaffner

How does making radio in the garden sound like? Between bugs and beetle bread, under the spell of the moon, in the small hours of the morning. How can the garden and its ecologies resound in radio?
These questions lay at the core of my archival and radiophonic investigations of what “makes” Datscha Radio special. On commission of Kunstradio Vienna a 51 minute sound collage was put together, to be broadcast on

Sneak Preview HERE

Includes excerpts of Datscha Radio 2017 and the Nightgardening series 2019 plus additional material. Datscha Radio Berlin is realized with Kate Donovan, Helen Thein and Niki Matita.

Full Credit List, artists in order of appearance:

Intros Datscha Radio aus 2017 und 2019

Sarah Washington: Analogue Birds, Datscha Radio 2014 (Backdrop)

Hidden Stories Singers (Dafne Della Dafne, Rosanna Lovell, Zara Verity Morris, Shanti Suki Osman, Mary Beth Volker): Let Us All Speak Our Minds by Elizabeth Knight

Martha Zapparoli: Improvisation – inaudible sound project 

Silky Toss & Pete de Ville: Sugar Bee, von Eddy Schuler

Frieder Butzmann. Twitter Twitter Tirili.

Seamus O’Donnell und Mi Ho: Freshly Squeezed Juice (Backdrop)

Presentation: Niki Matita
Datscha Abendchor mit Seamus O’Donnell, Mi Ho, Rosanna Lovell, Hans Kellett, Mat Pogo, Zelda Panda

Presentation Niki Matita (mit JD Zazie)
Marek Brandt: Musik für Nacktschnecken

Presentation Kate Donovan, Gabi Schaffner
Hans Kellett: Gardening with Perennials for Winter Interest
Hannes Wienert: Horchfelder 

Datscha Radio Madrid Jingle with KTA Martin, Eva Kurly, Alberto Garcia and Romi Casile

Niina Lehtonen-Braun: Pikku Lintu

Tech Check. Donovan, Schaffner, Thein

Niina Lehtonen-Braun: Iltakahvit

Kat Austen: The Beetles’ Harvest Supper

Helen Thein und Christy Spackman: The Scent of Water

Hans Kellett: Polar Star. From the series „10 (S)Cent Poems“ by Gabi Schaffner

Niki Matita and Walter Schulze: Secret-en-plein-aire 

Moderation: Niki Matita
Lukatoyboy: 7“ Bird Vinyls (Backdrop)

Mimi Coertse: The Nightingale and the Rose, 1932. Von Camille Saint-Saens. 

Nightingale. Live Stream Nightgardening

Jari Koho: Piano / FM Radio / Loop(Backdrop)

Helena Otto: Moon & Beetroot from the Performance „To the Belly and Back“ mit Jasmina Al-Qaisi

Niki Matita and Walter Schulze: Secret-en-plein-aire (Backdrop)

Ela Spalding: Reading from „The Anthropocene“ by Christian Schwägerl

Kate Donovan: Gratitude Ritual 

Ana Berkenhoff: Beast Jetzt (Tiny Sample)

Ela Spalding: Sundown

Marold Langer-Philippsen: Maschkera (The Night Garden)

Peggy Sylopp with Gabi Schaffner: Dawn walk


Sarah Washington: Datscha Owl, Datscha Radio 2012

Assortment, editing and additional sounds: Gabi Schaffner, 2020

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Nightcall Radio by Kate Donovan: On magnetism and the unheard, unsung, of the night.
A live stream of a microFM transmission from a garden in Berlin. Starting at 21:15 CET, when the night officially begins, Nightcall Radio wonders which signals are sent at night – in the radio, in the garden – and which are also received.

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This spring is different. It’s a good thing there’s radio! We’ve put together some special radiophonic seeds for you and will send them to you on air in the near future. Miraculously, there are various “seed distribution resources” that will support their dispersal.

New broadcasting studio in Berlin
On March 31st, the new FRBB studio will open in Haus der Statistik on Alexanderplatz in Berlin. From 3 – 10 p.m. there will be contributions by Colaboradio, frrapò – freies radio potsdam, Ohrfunk.de, Ohrsicht, onda, Pi Radio – Sender Berlin 88,4 MHz, Radio aporee, Freies Bürgerradio Slubfurt, Radio PAX, Radio Woltersdorf, Studio Ansage…. and to be heard from Datscha Radio.

“Datscha Radio in a Nutshell” is the title of the 10-minute sound collage that Niki Matita will present as part of her contribution. (Listen here at the sidebar on the right – credits at the end of this post). We are happy to participate and congratulatefr-bb.org on the new studio!

Matters of Transmission at Soundcamp, London
Kate Donovan’s contribution to the Soundcamp Festival in London is expected to be streamed between May 2nd and 3rd. “Matters of Transmission: Nightfall Radio” will begin at sunset and relates directly to Kate’s radiophonic research: natural radio, magnetite, memory, migration, multi-species communications, trans-scalar issues…
SoundCamp is an art collective in the Stave Hill Ecological Park in Rotherhithe that has existed since 2013. Their practice continues to evolve in response to its location through residencies, collaborations and commissions.

Vienna has also discovered the “garden on the radio” for itself. As part of this theme park, Kunstradio will seemingly broadcast a 50-minute soundcollage about Datscha Radio on May 20. Produced by Elisabeth Zimmermann and Gabi Schaffner.

Datscha Radio in a Nutshell – Credits
Composition and editing: Gabi Schaffner 2020. Length: 10 min
Excerpts taken from:
Jingles, rehearsals and mixes: 2012, 2014 Michaela Schimun, Ulrike Stoehring, “Datscha Owl” by Sarah Washington 2012; Nightgardening III: Gabi Schaffner, Niki Matita; Datscha Radio Taiwan, 2019: Catherine Lee, Yi-Chun Liu, Mabel Wang and Ming-Chun Cheng; Datscha Radio Madrid, 2018: KTA Martin, Romi Casile, Alberto Garcia. Eva Kurly.
Radio art pieces (in order of appearance): Babosa, Niki Matita 2019; Seeds, Kate Donovan (with Scout, Molly and Hunter from their garden) 2019; Greenhouse Emissions, Kate Donovan and Ryan McFadyen 2017, Gymnospermium Pills, Gabi Schaffner, 2019, voice: Kate Donovan
Surprise insert: The Giant Hummingbird. Frieder Butzmann at Datscha Radio 2017
Choir: The Nightingale by Thomas Wheeler, sung by the Berlin choir Singlust e.V. under the direction and by courtesy of Andrea Eckhard. Datscha Radio Nightgardening I, “The Night of the Nightingales” 2019
Musicians involved: Hannes Wienert, Mimosa Pale, FX Schroeder
Additional sound bites: Gabi Schaffner

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