Sub Berlin

Director: Tilmann Kuenzel

Year: 2009

Language: German, English

Subtitle: Chinese

Tresor Club, Goethe-Institut China, together with Intro 2010 Beijing Electronic Music Festival, will organize “Tresor Movie Screening Night”, as part of the serial events of the festival, and hope to introduce electronic music culture to the Beijing audience with the documentary film Sub Berlin.

Directed by Tilmann Kuenzel, and finished only at the end of last year, Sub Berlin tells the story of Tresor.

It is about discovery and development in the time following the fall of the Berlin Wall. A time capsule, where so much was unresearched and nobody knew who owned pieces of land and certain buildings in the former East Berlin. A time in which cultural activists threw themselves into these abandoned and unidentified spaces, and transformed them into their own developing mircrocosms.

Among the highlights will be how this music and its scene spread in the 90s in Berlin, to a massive phenomena and by 1998 lead to a gathering of 1.5 million people at the Loveparade dancing around the Victory Column. As pioneer and precursor of the era, Tresor Club was a focus point in the history of electronic music.

[Interviews in the film]
Sven Väth, Paul van Dyk, Chris Liebing, Jeff Mills, Dimitri Hegemann, Blake Baxter, Todd Bodine, Marusha, DJ Rush, Monika Kruse, Josh Wink, Mr. C, Tanith, Tok Tok, Daniel Miller, Mike Grant, Juan Atkins, Joey Beltram, Alexander Kowalski, Mike Andrawis, Alan Oldham, Toni RiosR, Rok, Dr. Motte, Paul Flynn, Marc Reeder, Regina Baer, Danielle De Picciotto, Alexandra Droener, James Pennington, Rick Kay, etc.


Tresor Club                         

Goethe-Institut China           

Intro 2010 Beijing Electronic Music Festival


Yugong Yishan Club               

Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA)


Tresor Club

“The undisputed cult location of techno and the implicator for the blossoming of a new musical generation, jointly responsible for the reunification of the youth from East and West Berlin.” – Frontpage, 1995.

Everything began in March 1991: a new club Tresor opened in the basement vault-rooms of a department store next to the famous Potsdamer Platz. Tresor came at the right time, in the right place and with the correct music. As Berlin’s first techno club, it corresponded to the public’s search for innovative music and newly found freedom in a post-Wall Berlin. Besides an entirely new music style being represented, the club’s rough, apocalyptic atmosphere ruled above all.

Tresor’s history actually goes back to 1988 when the Interfisch label team opened the UFO club. Even today UFO is considered the birthplace of the Berlin house and techno movement. Following its closing, Interfisch label head Dimitri Hegemann and partners unearthed a new location in the eastern half of the city on Leipziger Strasse. It was soon redesigned into a club that quickly became the hippest place in town. From day one it was clear that only first-rate talent played and performed. Party people from all over came to the club in droves to see Berlin turntable legends Tanith, Jonzon, Rok, Paul van Dyk, Kid Paul and Dr. Motte, etc. Tresor Club immediately became an ideal forum for the international electronic dance music scene, safe house for the preservation of techno, and a base for a worldwide musical revolution.

In 2005, shortly before Tresor Club’s 14th birthday, the news hit hard: Tresor Club was finally being pushed out from its little corner of Potsdamer Platz and the land would be used to build a high-rise insurance company building. In February it was announced that the last party in Tresor Club on the Leipziger Strasse would be on Saturday April 16, 2005. Between 1st and 16th April 2005, Tresor held a club party every night, DJs and clubbers from all over the world came to say goodbye during two weeks that became known as “The Final Cut”.

Starting on April 20th till 2006, Tresor Club’s Bonito House and Tresor Headquarters parties found themselves in exile at Club Maria in Berlin every Wednesday night. By the 16th anniversary in 2007, Tresor Club moved into its new home on the Köpenickerstrasse – in the heart of Berlin.

The Tresor concept and the memory of Leipziger Strasse 126a remains all that it is: a monolithic electronic rock in the turf and a magic place where the most intense experiences in techno and club culture will continue to ring forever through the asphalt and buildings of Potsdamer Platz.

Tresor Club:

Goethe-Institut China

The Goethe-Institut is a cultural institution of the Federal Republic of Germany that operates worldwide. Goethe-Institut China was established in 1988. Since then, we have been devoted to to the dissemination and use of the German language in China; we have also been energetically and extensively engaged in expanding Sino-German cultural exchange and cooperation. Rooted in an open German society and culture, and using professional and transnational cultural resources, Goethe-Institut China has collaborated in recent years with its Chinese partners to organize many cultural activities spanning various cultural domains including music, dance, film, art, architecture, and more.

Goethe-Institut China:

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  • Tickets: Free