Folkert Uhde; Hans-Joachim Gögl

Published On


Page Range

pp. 315–332


  • English

Print Length

18 pages

16. Strategies of Proximity

Breaking Away from the Standard Classical Concert

  • Folkert Uhde (author)
  • Hans-Joachim Gögl (author)
Since 2015, the two authors have been developing exceptional event concepts for, among others, the Montforter Zwischentöne festival, which they founded in Feldkirch, Austria, in the state of Vorarlberg. While it is clear that classical, new, improvised music and jazz invariably play a role at this festival with relatively traditional concert formats, there are moments when such forms of music are not the main focal point but support the exploration of other themes. Music may provide the impetus for dealing with a particular social or political issue, but it can also provide a resonating space for the spoken word. Such themes arise when dealing with the specific region in which the events take place and can stem from politics or regional development, touch on aspects of personal development, or address societal challenges. This chapter describes the authors‘ approaches to a new curatorial attitude in their event conception as ‘strategies of proximity‘. The authors also provide practical case studies from their work in Austria to accompany the theory offered in this text.


Folkert Uhde


Folkert Uhde developed the term concert design for his artistic work and established it as a theory in the discourse on new classical music concert formats. He is director of the Köthen Bach Festival and, together with Hans-Joachim Gögl, inventor and artistic director of the Montforter Zwischentöne in Feldkirch/Vorarlberg. The HUGO student competition for new concert dramaturgies was also created in the context of the Montforter nuances. Own artistic projects between concert design, direction and video are internationally present. In addition to the artistic-conceptual work, the topic of regional development through culture has also become more and more central in recent years. Folkert Uhde teaches at various colleges and universities and advises institutions on artistic and strategic future issues. As artistic director of the international research project Experimental Concert Research, he and an interdisciplinary team examine the concert experience from the perspective of the audience.

Hans-Joachim Gögl


Hans-Joachim Gögl is a format author active at the point where art, social politics, and personal development meet. He has gained insights from innovation research, religious rituals, and artistic strategies, all of which are elements found in many of his works. Together with the Berlin concert designer Folkert Uhde, he is the founder and artistic director of the "Montforter Zwischentöne" in Feldkirch, Austria. The HUGO International Competition for New Concert Formats, developed by Hans-Joachim Gögl and Folkert Uhde as part of the festival, is regarded today as one of the foremost young awards for innovative performance practice in the German-speaking world. Since 2018, he has been directing the series "INN SITU – Photography, Music, Dialogue" at the BTV Stadtforum Innsbruck, which he conceptualized and initiated.