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Unsound Announces 2020 Theme
Christian Eede , April 22nd, 2020 12:20

This year's festival will place a greater focus on the discourse programme amid the COVID-19 pandemic

Unsound has revealed the theme for its 2020 edition: Intermission.

With the ongoing uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already forced the cancellation and postponement of a number of this year's festivals, Unsound's organisers plan to make the festival's discourse programme the main focus of its 18th edition.

The festival's usual line-up of presentations, lectures, interviews and discussions will be expanded for 2020 and streamed live online, where they will also be archived. Musicians, writers, theorists, activists, scientists and others will be invited to take part, with much of the discussion centring around the world we find ourselves in amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Nobody knows yet if any sizeable music events will take place in the autumn, or what form they might take," a statement shared by the festival says. "Even if they do, we have no desire to book and announce artists in the usual way. The extremity of the situation requires a radical, meaningful and creative response, in terms both practical - according to the changing situation - and speculative.

"There is much to urgently discuss, not just about music and sound, but about their place and function in the new world that is rapidly taking shape. By October we believe that this need will be even greater. Some of the subjects we would like to explore include music in conditions of lockdown, pandemic and post-pandemic soundscapes, technologies of emergency, the environment and new forms of power. Others we realise we cannot yet foresee."

The uncertainty around the pandemic has also brought great economic uncertainty upon the festival as it has many others. The budget for Unsound 2020, organisers say, has been drastically cut, and there are plans to launch a crowdfunding campaign to help fund the Intermission book, vinyl and downloadable release, as well as to cover some costs related to the event itself.

The festival is scheduled to run from October 4 to 11, 2020. Find more information here.