Covid-19 and the taken measures have a big impact on everybody individually, but have also an impact on the music business. Enough of a reason to reach out to clubs, bands,… in the greater Hamburg area to see what the situation is and how everybody can stand together to go though this. Today we continue with Bambi galore and Florian Holzapfel, describing the situation there.
Markus Heavy Music Blog: Florian, what were your first thoughts when an imminent lockdown became apparent in the course of March?
Florian: That was quite a shock and also a lot of uncertainty since it took some time until there were official announcements. Now we’re closed until 31.08.2020 but beyond that, a lot of uncertainty remains. Even if concerts can take place again, which bands can come or even travel? Will there be enough audience or do a lot people prefer to stay at home?
MHMB: You guys at Bambi galore had a full calendar of events. How difficult is it to completely re-coordinate it? It seems almost an impossible task.
Florian: Some things can be rescheduled, some things need to be cancelled. It was quite a chaos, but since it was in the interest of everybody involved, it was easy to find solutions together. Even now we are working with a plan B..
MHMB: The situation is devastating for the music business. What were your first measures in the lockdown situation and do you receive governmental support?
Florian: We have not hosted any event since 14.03.2020. The Bambi galore belongs to the Stiftung Kulturpalast Hamburg and there’s a lot more to it: our restaurant is closed, the kindergarten is closed, the whole course program is on hold, all the projects can only be continued to a limited extent and on the whole the Kulturpalast felt into a kind of deep sleep. We are all in short-time work and, depending on the area, things will probably stay like that for quite some time.
MHMB: Beside all the drama, do you also feel a new solidarity in the world of music? It feels like everyone is moving a little closer together?
Florian: The solidarity is high, both from the audience side and especially the support of some local bands – they know what they have on their live locations, of course. Also our ticket provider waived his costs for all cancelled events, so that tickets that might not be returned will received completely at our side, which is of course great.
MHMB: Nobody knows at the moment how things will evolve. When do you think concerts can take place again in the future?
Florian: Well, I assume that sooner or later everything will be back to like it was before, sweating and screaming with a beer in your hand, standing next to each other in front of the stage. But yes, it can still take a while.
MHMB: I think that the Corona crisis makes clear to everybody how crucial live music is. Only when you don’t have concerts anymore, you see how important they are. To what extent can music fans support you to survive the crisis?
Florian: Yes, as with almost all the things, you only notice what you actually had the moment it’s gone. That also applies to the whole cultural sector. One got used to the fact that, especially here in Hamburg, there was almost a surplus.
What we do now: We have converted our Kronensaal into a streaming studio with several cameras and motion picture direction. It’s pretty cool. It’s fun for us and the bands, but of course it’s just ’methadone’ compared to the real stuff. Nevertheless, it is great fun when a lot of people are watching!
Just enter Kulturpalast Hamburg on Youtube. There will always be something new from all our areas. Metal concerts, Hip Hop dance classes, children’s songs, line dance workshop, let’s see what else we can come up with.
MHMB: Florian, thanks for making some time. Is there anything else from your side that you would like to mention?
Florian: Thanks, no.