Siemens becomes partner and main supporter of Deutsche Grammophon’s online initiative presenting live performancesSiemens becomes partner and main supporter of DG Stage – The Classical Concert Hall. The new relationship recalls the historic role played by Siemens as owner and then significant shareholder of the Yellow Label, from 1941 to 1987.
The Siemens Arts Program is looking for new developments in recording technology and film and we are interested in finding a new visual language for online concerts. To achieve this, we collaborate with specialists from the fields of 3DSound, XR, game engine, film, and media art. And most recently, Siemens has become a partner of DG Stage - The Classical Concert Hall. With this cooperation, we are trying to make classical music accessible to a wider audience by combining the repertoire of classical music with the technology of the 21st century.
All photos: Stefan Hoerderath
Siemens is set to invest in DG Stage’s productions and technical development until the end of 2021.
The partnership aims to expand the platform’s ability to offer a global audience long-form concerts, world premiere presentations and performances, featuring everyone from the superstars signed to DG to up-and-coming young musicians, as well as guest artists involved in outstanding individual projects.
“Using the latest technology to bring music to a wider audience was a key concern of both companies when Siemens was a shareholder of Deutsche Grammophon in the middle of the last century,” comments Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon. “What we want to do now, via our new DG Stage partnership, is translate this fundamental idea into the present. DG Stage is a response to our artists’ need for innovative online opportunities to complement their live performance work and to the desire of classical music audiences worldwide to experience exciting new productions at close range despite the current restrictions on live events. Siemens is an established and much-valued partner and sponsor of some of the world’s leading international festivals and music institutions, and together we are now expanding these activities into the digital realm. We are very much looking forward to a creative collaboration.”
The times we’re living in call for completely new concert formats, and classical music has to seize the opportunities offered by the digital world. It has only survived as long as it has because it has never stopped reinventing itself. In fact it really ought to be called ‘renewable’ rather than ‘classical’ music. For Siemens, that endless variability is the beauty of classical music – constant evolution ensuring the future existence of an established art form. That’s why promoting research, technology, art and culture is so central to our corporate culture.Professor Dr. Stephan Frucht, Artistic Director of Siemens Arts Program
In addition to that Prof. Dr. Stephan Frucht explains: "Here at Siemens Art Program, innovative thinking about classical music is part of our day-to-day work. That’s why we want to be part of and contribute our expertise to DG’s pioneering digital project. Social distancing calls for spiritual closeness. The shared history between Siemens and Deutsche Grammophon leads us to expect something special to come from any joint projects. And, for purely artistic reasons, I’m delighted that the DG Stage platform will allow us to introduce talented young musicians discovered and promoted through our own cultural initiatives to audiences all over the world."
The history of Siemens & German Grammophone Society
The oldest and most traditional German record company was founded in 1898 by the brothers Emil and Joseph Berliner in Hanover. After quickly becoming the market leader, Deutsche Grammophon's sales plummeted dramatically during the global economic crisis due to faltering sales of luxury consumer goods. In addition, the emigration to which the owners and many of the obligated artists were forced in 1933 led to losses in the artistic quality and breadth of the record repertoire. In 1941, Siemens & Halske AG acquired a hundred percent majority stake in Deutsche Grammophon through the so-called "Telefunken transaction”. In the 1950s, the company regained its market-leading position and was incorporated into the Phonogram joint venture with Philips in 1962. In 1972 Philips and Deutsche Grammophon formed the joint venture company PolyGram. Philips finally took over all PolyGram shares from Siemens in 1987.