Pop-Kultur curator on achieving a rare 50-50 gender balance in the festival’s lineup: ‘It was really easy’

Neneh Cherry, photo by Kim Hiorthoy


The Pop-Kultur festival is returning to Berlin next month, presenting over 100 events from Aug. 15 – 17 at the Kulturbrauerei. The festival gives musicians space to expand on the artistic currents underpinning much of pop culture and pop music today with a program of performances, new commissions, exhibitions, talks, and workshops.

The festival’s organizers have assembled a line-up of both international and Berlin-based artists. Finding balance was a major factor when choosing musicians according to Martin Hossbach, one-third of Pop-Kultur’s curatorial team. The lineup features both older and younger generations of performers and achieves a 50-50 balance between male- and female-identifying artists.

Hossbach laments that a male majority among musicians is still the norm at most music festivals, but rejects the idea that finding female musicians is a challenge. On the contrary, “it was really easy,” he says: “I get very upset when someone says there aren’t enough female, I don’t know, ‘headline acts’…that’s just rubbish. It usually means the person saying it is lazy.”

For more information, follow KCRW Berlin’s coverage of Pop Kultur, including ticket giveaways, on our website.

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