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E-Werk Berlin - powering up the clubszene

Powerful stories from Berlin

ewerk
ewerk, Foto: Juliane Eirich

With courage  Berlin has already made it through many a crisis. That is why we have taken a look at the past 600 years of history for you and discovered many powerful stories that are unmistakable for Berlin, for Berliners. Let us inspire you. 

Laurent Garnier once sank down on his knees here in the large hall. The French DJ and techno producer was so impressed by the E-Werk that he is said to have begged to be buried here. Like so many vacant buildings of industrial architechture, the E-Werk became the backdrop for Berlin's wild party culture after the fall of the Wall - and soon ranked among the best clubs in the world.

In the 90s, the "Who's Who" of the techno scene is spinning the turntables in E-Werk: The forefathers of the Detroit scene around Derrick May, Juan Atkins and Kevin Anderson as well as the English elite around Carl Cox, but also Sven Väth, DJ Hell and Paul van Dyk played. Residents included Terry Belle, Jonzon, Clé and of course Westbam, who brings the pulse of the club scene to the boiling point with ever faster beats per minute. In short, the zeitgeist of Berlin's subculture pulsates like nowhere else in the former power station that once supplied the electricity for Berlin's first electric streetcar.

Everything is possible

In 1992 Andreas Rossmann, part of the Planet Club crew, discovers the E-Werk, which until 1991 was still being used as a depot for street lamps. On a bitterly cold day in February 1993, the first party takes place.The beats are hard and fast and the open fire installations give the place an impressin which would rather fit into the New York Bronx than in the middle of Berlin. The so-called Evidence Party is followed by others, such as TWIRL, the Dubmission and also many special formats, for example for the Berlin Loveparade. Prodigy played here for the MTV European Music Award in 1994, and anything seems possible: from a Massive Attack concert to a Versace Gala Dinner. Katharina Thalbach even stages a performance of Don Giovanni together with Christoph Hagel.

4000 guests dance a farewell dance

At the E-Werk, boundaries are sometimes crossed. Legendary is the story of supermodel Naomi Campbell, who is dragged out of the toilet cubicle by the toilet attendant for "illegal practices". This does not harm the reputation of the E-Werk, quite the opposite. The crowds flock to the Mauerstrasse club in such numbers that many are turned away at the door.

At the closing party in 1997, 4,000 guests dance for three days and nights. Today, working, living and partying merge at E-Werk. E-Werk is an event location, offers office space and 12 large residential units. In addition, Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe (BVG) continues to use ewerk to generate electricity to power subway lines 2 and 6. And Laurent Garnier? He's far from being buried and has been hosting a show on Soundcloud since 2018, titled "What's next!"

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Josefine Köhn-Haskins

Josefine

ist in München aufgewachsen, hat dort studiert und bei der SZ volontiert. Auf der Suche nach neuen Abenteuern entdeckte sie erst New York, dann Miami und berichtete als Trendscout und Korrespondentin für verschiedene Publikationen. Ihr Zuhause fand sie dann aber in Berlin. Fasziniert von den vielen Facetten der Stadt ist sie kreuz und quer in den Kiezen unterwegs und beschäftigt sich gerne mit Zukunftsideen und Smart City Konzepten für ein innovatives Berlin.