MELT: Migration in Europe and Local Tradition.


Festival Soho in Ottakring

The festival 2008 invited artists to scrutinise and define the possibilities and functions of (temporary) art projects in an urban surrounding under the theme "What’s up? What’s really going on here?". During the two-week festival MELT had its first opportunity to present the project in public. Music was selected as the focus of discourse on migration and local traditions. Centre stage was taken not by an examination of Austrian traditional culture, but rather by research into the various traditions of ethnic minorities living in the region. All participants brought their own tradition to the joint musical performances.

Adding to performances by local musicians from differing ethnic backgrounds and artistic genres, "The Music Distillery" and "The Vienna Improvisers Orchestra"” served as distinct platforms of spontaneous experimentation and gave the "travelling" MELT musicians from Birmingham and Sighişoara the opportunity to join in and amplify the planned programme of cultural exchange between regional and international artists.

Urban Narratives

The longterm research survey "Urban Narratives", initiated by Soho in Ottakring as a distinct project from the festival programme, travelled the MELT cities interviewing artists from primarily migrant backgrounds on their personal and professional biographies. Focus was layed on the issue of the extent to which their work is influenced by their own tradition or that of their host country. The interviews were recorded on video and evaluated in a compact study presented to the public at the final MELT conference held during the Suq Festival in Genoa 2009.

Go back or to the project's website.