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50 years Sonntags-Club

On the occasion of the Sonntags-Club's 50th birthday, the exhibition highlights the combative and eventful history of one of Berlin's most important and inclusive queer institutions. Over 20 groups come together there and exchange ideas, there is counselling, culture, dance and actions, seven days a week. The exhibition is shown in two locations: the Sonntags-Club itself and the Gay Museum.




A path through five decades and two social systems. A struggle for recognition as an initiative, association and club. A decades-long, finally successful search for a permanent place that offers security, exchange, fun and spaces for action.
Early actions by trans*, inter*, bisexual and non-binary people, long before they were a natural part of the German LGBTIQA* movement. The diversity of members and guests, but also the conflicts and negotiation processes that exemplify developments in community and society. All this becomes visible in this exhibition.


The Sonntags-Club can be celebrated!





In 1973, the decision for a "Homosexuelle Interessensgemeinschaft Berlin" (HIB) was made in front of the television in an East Berlin living room.  It was "Not the homosexual is perverted, but the situation in which he lives" by Rosa von Praunheim and Martin Dannecker that was shown. As in many other places in Germany, the desire for exchange and action arose from the self-reflection it called for. But it was difficult to put this into practice.


In the GDR, political organisations outside the state structures were forbidden, meetings were monitored. The HIB met in private living quarters, later in the cellar of the Gründerzeit Museum run by Charlotte von Mahlsdorf. Registration as an association was denied until the fall of the Wall, and HIB events took place in various places under the innocuous name "Sundays in the Club".In 1990, the Sonntags-Club finally found an official structure as a registered association, public support - and premises that soon became too small for its concerns and members.


First in Rhinower Straße, and from 1999 onwards in Greifenhagener Straße, the Sonntags-Club became the important institution for the most diverse groups of the LGBTIQA* scene that it is known as today.


In 1988, for example, a bisexual interest group was founded in the Sonntags-Club and already in the early 1990s there was a contact point for trans* people with "KOMM TV/TS", the Sonntags-Club participated in the organisation of the Berlin CSD and fought against the adoption of §175 in the former GDR territory.


The HIB drafted three principles to which the Sonntags-Club has remained true to this day:


  • First: the group becomes family for its members and friends, is a place of security and partnership formation.
  • Secondly: the group provides advice and information, solidarity and life support, leisure activities, political and cultural work in the community.
  • Thirdly: the group works in the heteronormative public sphere, represents interests vis-à-vis authorities, media, professionals, organisations, promotes information and education.



In times when even the community is moving apart and allowing itself to be polarised by different interests and voices, the Sonntags-Club has remained a place where people from the most diverse backgrounds, of all ages, with the most diverse experiences and in constant - even controversial - exchange with each other feel comfortable.


What people agree on are the other three principles of the Sonntags-Club for 50 years: love, fight, dance!

Additional information
Opening hours:

Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 12-18 h
Thursday: 12-20 h
Saturday: 14-19 h
Sunday:14-18 h
Tuesday: Day off

Accessibility

Information on accessibility is available here.