Karneval der Kulturen

Karneval der Kulturen
Photo: www.karneval-berlin.de
Karneval der Kulturen (Carnival of Cultures) is an annual multicultural festival held around Pentecost in downtown Berlin, Germany. This is a four-day urban festival designed to celebrate multiculturalism, tolerance and peace. The event is organized by Piranha Arts AG.

Karneval der Kulturen (KdK) was founded in 1996 as a reaction against the nationalism and racism that grew in the 1990s in Germany. It was designed to combat racial prejudices and to support the growing internationalism of the German capital. The event was inspired by other multicultural festivals held in Europe such as the Summer Carnival (Zomercarnaval) in Rotterdam and the Notting Hill Carnival in London.

The first festival took place on May 15 and 16, 1966. It featured around 2,200 participants and attracted 50,000 attendees. Since then it has grown to become one of the largest multicultural festivals in Europe with 5,000 performers and about 1.5 million attendees.

The Berlin Carnival of Cultures is held in Krezuberg, colloquially also known as X-Berg. Kreuzberg is one of the best-known areas of Berlin famous for its counterculture and alternative scene as well as for its very large percentage of immigrants of different cultures and heritages. During the festival, it gets transformed into a platform for various cultural identities and self-empowerment.

Karnival der Kulturen features thousands of performers who represent different cultures, forms of art, genres and styles. Professional and amateur performers, dancers and musicians, adults and children participate in the spectacular parade that marches through Kreuzberg. Besides, world-renowned and up-and-coming artists perform on the festival stages and in the streets of Berlin.

The Carnival Parade is the main highlight of the festival. Featuring around 4,000 participants, it is an enormous street party that kicks off around noon and lasts until evening. Along the parade route, there are stands with food and drinks. Alongside German participants, there are many African and South American groups. Interestingly, Turkish groups are hardly represented despite the fact that Kreuzberg has large Turkish population.

Along with the parade, the program of Karnival der Kulturen features a large street fest with over 200 artists and performers and several official parties. The street fest offers numerous musical performances, a green area, vendors, special programs, and more.

Karneval der Kulturen

Photo: Berlijn Blog



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