Berlin’s Cultural Scene

by Andrew Stein

Berlin’s art, music, museum collections, and memorials all sum together to create an atmosphere that includes something for everyone. Although there is much I could mention on this topic, I will describe one encounter I have with said culture on a night I decide to go to a nearby jazz club.

This contemporary jazz club, B Flat, located not far from my hostel, received good online reviews and I figure while in a city that offers so much entertainment, I should at least try to take advantage. I arrive at the club shortly before the performers begin, I find a close seat so that I can watch the pianists fingers on the keys, I order a cold beer, and I watch the sky outside move from dusk to dark. The music begins. It is hard to find a beat to tap my foot to, but I search for it anyway. Nonetheless, I am impressed by the modernity of the song’s introduction. One minute passes, and I start to feel that the introduction is a bit long. Two minutes pass, and I begin to realize that this is an entire introductory song and not just a couple notes. Five minutes pass, and I think to myself this song is a bit long for what it is. Fifteen minutes pass, and I notice that the temperature in the bar is a bit warm. Thirty minutes pass, and the musicians are still on their first song. I am still looking for a beat for my foot. The pianist enjoys standing up and occasionally scraping the strings in the piano with various tools he has brought along. The trumpeter continues to make seemingly unmelodious and untraditional sounds escape from his instrument. Sixty minutes pass, and I still feel that they are on the same song because there has not yet been a break for the audience to applaud. Finally, 80 minutes pass, and the musicians begin a ten minute finale.

I walk back to my hostel trying to find news ways to appreciate what I have just witnessed. This is when I realize that even if the music was not completely my exact genre of choice, this experience still proves the creativity and openness of the Berlin music scene. From these performances all the way to Las Vegas style shows, Berlin has an expansive repertoire of evening entertainment, which is just one of many of the city’s attractive traits.