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Datscha Radio’s nightly audio treats:

  • 3.8. 22-23 Uhr: Frau Puschels Gartenschnack
    with: Heike Puschel, Hartmut Holzapfel et al
  • 4.8. between 22-23 Uhr: Förster A.D.
    with: Wolfgang Paritzsch, et al
  • 5.8. between 22-23 Uhr: Gärten und Sterne
    with: Mathias Scheliga reads “Das Leben der Ameisen” by Maurice Maeterlink, excerpts from Münchhausen and Clarissa by Paul Scheerbart, and GardenstateData von Gabi Schaffner. Et al.
  • followed by Reprise Nachtschnecken Laubengarten, a re-broadcast of all three former shows until ca. 1:30 Uhr, 7. 8. 2023

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Datscha Radio carries the “Flying Salon of the Allotment Gardens” beyond the region of Altenburg into the wide country. Very big thanks to our broadcasting partners in Leipzig, Halle and Berlin !!!
Our program Laubenlauschen will be heard between 14 and 17 o’clock in and on:

Leipzig, Sphere Radio
Thur, 3. 8.: 14 – 16 Uhr
Fri, 4. 8.: 14 – 15 Uhr
Sat, 5. 8.: 14 – 17 Uhr
Sun, 6. 8.: 14 – 16 Uhr

Berlin, Cashmere Radio
Thur, 3. 8. – Sun, 6. 8. all through 14 – 17 Uhr, except Sat: 14 – 16:30 Uhr
On Fri, 5. 8. from 16 – 17 Uhr also on 88,4 FM Berlin and 90,7 in Potsdam

Leipzig, Radio Blau
Fri, 4. 8.: 15 – 17 Uhr

Halle, Radio Corax
Donnerstag 3. 8. 14 – 15
Freitag 4. 8. 15 – 16 Uhr
Samstag 5. 8. 14 – 16 Uhr

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Here comes a sneak preview of our program.
Each broadcast is additionally structured by some fixed features in the program, like the daily garden talk over the phone, the slightly crazy ‘arbor maze expedition’ with DJ Shlucht and Geranium blonde, or the “listening after nature” with field recordings from gardens around the world.

Of course, all details are subject to change – even a radio garden cannot be planned in a week.

Day 1 Shacks und Palaces (3.8.2023) 

Datscha Radio will be introduced to arbors and palaces, which have a good hundred years of tradition in Altenburg. But who owns the parks and gardens today? Who lives in them? And why? Datscha Radio asks how much community an allotment garden can take, which weeds can be put on the plate and listens to the wind in the willows…

Guest: Dana Weber

Day 2 ‘Headlights’ and Ears (4.8.2023) 

In hunter’s language, lights mean the eyes of the deer… which in turn also has very beautiful erectable eavesdroppers. We concentrate on the visual, art in nature, nature as art.

We accompany the forester Mr. Paritzsch through the Leina forest and let him explain what we can learn from the forest and ask: Can we also learn something by just listening to the forest?

A text and sound collage then takes us to Dresden to the allotment garden association “Flora 1”. Sonya Schönberger talked to people whose paths cross in the allotment garden about their memories and future prospects and created a feature from this, with Norbert Lang contributing the sounds.

Guest: Viktoria Scholz

Day 3 Skies and Flies (5.8.2023) 

Datscha Radio visits a star observant garden in Altenburg and asks which plants are addicted to the moon and how much light a garden can actually take? Do flowers change their shape in starlight?

Reichlich Wissen über Insekten bringt auch Christiane Nienhold mit, die sich als Eine-Neue-Welt-Pflanzerin für neue Strukturen und für eine naturverbundene Welt mit Hilfe des Gärtnerns einsetzt.

Guests: Frank Vohla, Christiane Nienhold

Day 4 On-Lookers and Birds of Passage (6.8.2023) 

Proper German allotment gardens are not allowed to erect fences higher than 1.20 meters. In this way, they separate plots from each other, but also allow for coexistence. Allotment gardeners may have their own individual plots, but they share the same listening space. Datscha Radio about borders and boundaries and about the communal and social traits of gardening.

Guests from ukraine gardening in Altenburg. Translator Harry Huttenlocher, Maren Troschke

Erläuterung zu Dokumentationen Datscha Radio

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90,6 MHz im Radio!

Datscha Radio narrow-broadcasts in a small radius of the Historic Arbor Garden on FM on 90.6 Mhz. The technology we use for this is a transmitter with a very short range. In doing so, Laubenlauschen strives to encourage shared listening…. in times of ubiquitous digital devices a real rarity!

Bring your old radio into the garden, pack a cushion and maybe a drink and listen in !

Also – the citizens of Altenburg have noticed – our postcards are ready printed and are available at the usual suspicious places in the city as well as in the Vereinhaus der Einheit e. V..

Photo: Grit Martinez
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Access from the Great Pond (Großer Teich) next to the orchard meadow and follow signs from the parking lot after the camping site.

Link on google maps.

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The weather was changeable and rainy on the last day of June. The puddles on the paths to the garden colony “Einheit” were so deep that we really should have arrived with rubber boots. Instead, we traveled with self-tailored dresses in the style of the 1920s. Because as part of the Long Night of Museums in Altenburg, the motto of the festival in the Historic Laubengarten focused on the founding year of the colony: “A Day in June 1923”.

The small wooden bower, which Datscha Radio used as a studio because of the rain, was not only decorated with porcelain, original table linen, and a brass hanging lamp but also with an old so-called Volksempfänger. It is quite possible that people were already listening to the radio in the allotment gardens back then because 1923 was also the year of the first radio broadcast in Germany.

The bower before it turned into a radio studio. Photo: Courtesy Historischer Laubengarten

In order to test the planned VHF transmission in August from the Laubengarten despite the adverse weather, our mini transmitter was mounted on a spruce branch a good four meters long. Frank Vohla, the tenant of the neighbouring Sternengarten (Garden of Stars) and amateur astronomer, came to our aid. The Sternengarten is also a project of the association: a telescope mounted under the attic window will allow future guests to make astronomical observations there.

The rain, however, turned out to be the lesser problem. More problematic was the failure of the telecommunications provider. While we feverishly searched for a solution and found it after some time, the garden and the buffet filled up. Almost every visitor brought a tray with cakes and canapés or drinks for the buffet. The redcurrants were clearly in season.

Frau Petra Klink erzählte über ihren Garten
Frau Ursula Lücke schaute nach dem Buffet

At 7 pm, we went on air tentatively with a conversation with the volunteer organizer of the festival and chairperson of the Historic Bower Garden Association, Grit Martinez.

She gave us an insight into the development of the foliage colony over the last 40 years. Would the gardens have all been occupied before the fall of the Wall? Here Ms. Martinez answered with a resounding Yes! Before that, there had been a good 60,000 inhabitants in the city, but in the course of the 1990s, there were soon only about 30,000. Not only the young, but whole families left for the West. There are still 66 deciduous colonies in Altenburg, but only just under a third of them are cultivated. While in Berlin and actually in all (West) German cities people have to sign up for long waiting lists for an allotment garden, just three years ago a good 70 unity gardens stood overgrown. The restoration of the Historische Laube and the work of the association led to a reactivation of the abandoned plots as well, of which a good 40 have now been mediated.

Meanwhile, Helen Thein was out and about in the neighbouring gardens to capture the voices of the gardeners: Conversations and walks in front of and behind the garden fences, which in the Einheit e. V. (in contrast to some other allotment garden colonies) are not measured out super-strictly to their 1.20 m with a string. 

The interest in nature-friendly gardening is huge and is supported by young and old alike… at least in this colony. Many gardens were and are cultivated by several generations, for example, Mrs. Martinez’s great-grandparents were already working on the same allotment where her parents are currently gardening.

The shellac record collection, which was the musical centerpiece of the entertainment, also came from their estate. A new guest strode through the garden gate and attracted attention: a young man, meticulously dressed in the style of the 1920s. Naturally, we asked for a radio appointment…

Chris Junk and Grit Martinez

8:15 pm was the time for the ‘official radio talk’ with Ms. Martinez and the association’s vice-chair, Christine Junk. Together we looked back at the history of the deciduous gardens and discussed the relevance of subsistence farming today. Ms. Junk, who had taken over the planting of the Historical Deciduous Garden, spoke about the preservation of old fruit and vegetable varieties – also with an eye on climate change, which challenges us to experiment with new species and seeds. Both emphasized the cultural tolerance and openness of their association as the most important feature. Several Ukrainian families have found a new garden home here. What, if not openness and diversity, should make successful gardening possible?

In the next radio talk, we also learned the name of the young man dressed so smartly in knickerbockers and a slouch hat. Matteo had become aware of the theme of the garden festival through the ‘Museumsnacht’ poster. It was a rare opportunity to learn first-hand what makes the magic of the 1920s for young people today… and it became clear that it is not easy to afford clothes and ambience away from the big cities.

Gradually, more and more guests in a celebratory mood streamed through the gate into the Historic Bower Garden. Many came to the bower and peeked in to see what our radio looked like.

Finally, Helen and I looked ahead to our plans for future broadcasts. Datscha Radio returns to the Laubengarten in the first week of August and will lend its eyes and ears to the diverse (wild) gardens of the city, the presence of gardening, and its actors in Altenburg. The ‘Streuobstradio’ in early autumn, on the other hand, will speculate on new seeds and forms of gardening togetherness. We are looking forward to it!

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Datscha Radio travels to Thuringia: On 30 June, as part of the Altenburg Museum Night, we test our set-up for August and September. We will broadcast live from 7 – 10 p.m. from the Historic Laubengarten of the Gartenkolonie Einheit e. V..

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11 degrees, wind with more wind from the South, this was the magical weather forecast that day. Radio started 15 min earlier: To the delight of the birds sailing by and next to the terrace’s railing Lukatoyboy‘s tape mingled with their constant voices and the rushing winds.

More magic arrived from Australia in the shape of a recording of Tuning Forks, a ‘divination cooking show’ by the sound witches Julia Drouhin, Philippa Stafford and Biddy O’Connor.

Radio Guest of the day was the Helsinki-based Finnish-Czech artist and activist and poet Roza Turunen who came accompanied by her writer friend Maija Karakoski and her mother and costume artist Jana Vyborna-Turunen. Roza introduced her poem, “Caesura of Tragedy” as a stream-of-consciousness performance dealing with magical moments in the every-day-world.

Our ensuing talk revolved around Roza’s writing and sensing practices. Caesura of Tragedy, for example, was left unaltered in every word. In this way, the mind of the poetess became recorded directly onto the notepad.

Anti-disciplinary artist Cecilie Fang’s poem Our skin as a Carrier Bag, – “lines of words entangling the ecology of touch (Fang)”, offered itself as an as beautiful as a fitting closure to Roza’s reading.

Taking a small break on the path to the house, I was lucky to strike a very quick conversation with the artist Sirkku Ala-Harja about sea monsters, the theme of her two drawings put up at the gallery.

Spells for changing weather conditions are a common and worldwide spread magical practice. A Prayer for Rain, for everyone, sent to Harraka Island Radio by Sebastiane Hegarty offered “A fragment of voice from an anonymous audio cassette letter, sent from Canada to Winchester, UK and found in a second-hand shop in the late 1990s.” This was followed by GongPunk, a “sound recording of a “Gong Bath” provided by the Gong Master Gonzalo Zavalla and intervened in real-time by Franco Falistoco in 2018.”

The last conversation transmitted to the airwaves of Harakka Island was with Kari Yli-Annala, reflecting on the event’s tides of performances, lectures, movie screenings, and the exhibition in the gallery Lennätin. Altogether, more than 20 artists shared their art and knowledge. Kari said, a better-funded and more thoroughly advertised “Week of the Impossible” would of course still offer more channels to spread the interdisciplinarity of the Experimental Arts… as is his declared endeavor for 2024. Together with the visiting guests of the gallery we then listened to last day’s recording of Joonas’ lecture.

Our broadcast closed with a work by the sonic anthropologist Tom Miller, Thin Cities – an “imaginary sound-mapping of Thomas More’s fictional 16th-century island of Utopia, built around analog tapes of Italo Calvino reading from his books Invisible Cities and Mr. Palomar.“

It felt sad to leave the island, the (im)possibility of returning for more radio and more analogue magic hanging in the air like Petrichor. Yet, what became very clear again – in my talks with Kari, in the multi-felt’ processes related to radio-making and getting to know a new place with its varied fauna and flora: Radio is a medium that is reaching out… and truly affects the listeners’ being-in-the-world. I liked Harakka Radio’s humble 92 MHz frequency that shared (and re-shared) the air space with hundreds of watchful avian nesting. Important to say: everybody I spoke to, was greatly impressed, amazed, dazed (you name it) by the very existence of radio art.

Contributing radio artists of Day 4 (in loose order of appearance)

  • Julia Drouhin, Pip Stafford, Biddy O’Connor: Tuning Forks
  • Tiger Stangl: Rewind
  • Cecilie Fang: Our Skin as Carrier Bag
  • Sebastiane Hegarty: A Prayer for Rain, for everyone
  • Franco Fallistocu: Gong Punk
  • Joonas Jokiranta: Magiasta. Lecture from 27th of May
  • Tom Miller: Thin Cities

Last but not least remark: ­­Some views of the island and the station’s surroundings were captured on a mechanical panorama camera :) If something’s on the film: You will see it in due time.

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