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|Location(s)||Various locations in Germany|
|Years active||1989–2003; 2006–2008; 2010|
|Genre||Electronic dance music festival and parade|
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (July 2008)|
|Location(s)||Various locations in Germany|
|Years active||1989–2003; 2006–2008; 2010|
|Genre||Electronic dance music festival and parade|
The Love Parade (German: Loveparade) was a popular electronic dance music festival and parade that originated in 1989 in West Berlin, Germany. It has been held annually in Germany 1989-2003 in Berlin, then again in 2006 in Berlin and from 2007 to 2010 in the Ruhr region. The 2004 and 2005 events in Berlin and the 2009 event in Bochum  were cancelled.
On 24 July 2010, a crowd rush at the Love Parade caused the death of 21 people, with at least 500 others injured. As a consequence of this, the organiser of the festival announced that no further Love Parades would be held and that the festival was permanently cancelled.
The parade first occurred just months before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. It was started by the Berlin underground at the initiative of Matthias Roeingh (also known as "Dr Motte") and his then girlfriend Danielle de Picciotto. It was conceived as a political demonstration for peace and international understanding through love and music. It was supposed to be a bigger birthday party for Roeingh, later "Dr Motte", and the motto Friede, Freude, Eierkuchen (in English — Peace, Joy, Pancakes) stood for disarmament (peace), music (joy) and a fair food production/distribution (pancakes). Roeingh dissociated himself from the parade in 2006 because of the commercialization of the event.
The parade was held on the Berlin Kurfürstendamm (avenue) until 1996. Because of overcrowding on the Kurfürstendamm, the festival moved to the Straße des 17. Juni in the Tiergarten park in the center of Berlin. The festival became centered around the Siegessäule in the middle of the park; and the golden angel atop the column became the parade's emblem.
Many people from Germany and abroad traveled to Berlin to take part in the Parade — over a million attended in the years 1997 through 2000 and 800,000 in 2001. Attendance at the 2001 festival was significantly lower because the date of the parade was changed with little advance notice. 2002 and 2003 also saw lower figures, and in 2004 and 2005 the parade was cancelled because of funding difficulties and coordinated opposition from most of Germany's green parties. The parade had inspired opposition because of the damage to the Tiergarten by participants, who were provided with insufficient toilet facilities. Opponents allegedly complicated matters for organisers by booking their own events in Berlin and so to exclude the parade from being able to register with city police. In 2004, however, a scaled-down version took place which served more as a mini-protest and was promoted with the title Love Weekend. Dozens of clubs promoted the weekend-long event all over the city, with various clubs staying open for three days straight without closing. In 2006, the parade made a comeback with the help of German exercise studio McFit.
The Love Parade 2007 was planned for 7 July 2007 in Berlin. However, the Berlin event was cancelled in February because the Senate of Berlin did not issue the necessary permits at that time. After negotiations with several German cities, on 21 July, it was announced that the parade would move to the Ruhr Area for the next five years. The first event took place in Essen on 25 August. The parade in Essen saw 1.2 million visitors in comparison to the 500,000 who attended the 2006 parade in Berlin.
In 2008, the festival took place in Dortmund on 19 July on the Bundesstraße 1 under the motto Highway of Love. The event was planned as a "Love Weekend", with parties throughout the region. For the first time the Turkish electronic scene was represented by its own float, called "Turkish Delights". The official estimate is that 1.6 million visitors attended, making it the largest parade to date.
The 2009 event, planned for Bochum, was cancelled; a year later, the deaths of twenty-one attendees at the Duisburg venue prompted the parade's organiser Rainer Schaller to declare an end to the festival. "The Love Parade has always been a peaceful party, but it will forever be overshadowed by the accident, so out of respect for the victims the Love Parade will never take place again," Schaller said. The parade was one of the oldest and largest festivals of electronic music, together with Zurich's Streetparade, Mayday and Nature One.
The music played at the events was predominantly electronic dance music — in this case mainly trance, house, techno, and schranz music. Attempts to introduce other music styles, such as hip hop, have failed. Hardcore and gabber music were part of the parade in early years, but were later removed. They are now celebrated separately on a counter-demonstration called "Fuckparade".
The parade was seen to be louder and more crowded than most concerts. With its water-cooled sound systems on every truck, the parade produced an extremely loud sound floor. After the 2001 arrangement, veterinarians at the Berlin Zoo blamed the parade for giving more than half of its animals diarrhea. Chairman Heiner Kloes said veterinarians told him the heavy bass was to blame for disturbing the animals. The parade consisted of the sound trucks that usually featured local, or important, clubs and their DJs. It had become a rule that only trucks that had sponsors from a techno-related field, such as clubs, labels or stores, were allowed, but advertising space was increased after the 2006 event to offset the high costs of equipping a truck. The trucks were usually open on top and feature dancers, with box-systems mounted on the side or rear.
The parade was a place where some exhibited and enjoyed other people's exhibitionist tendencies. Some attendees enjoyed carrying around toys such or other items such as dummies (pacifiers) or face masks. Often the crowd was imaginative in terms of clothing (or lack thereof) and appearance.
One famous picture from the parade is people sitting and dancing on streetlamps, trees, commercial signs, telephone booths, which gave the event's nickname "the greatest amateur circus on earth".
The finale of the demonstration is by the so-called "Abschlusskundgebung" which are half-hour sets of the world's leading top DJs such as DJ Tiesto, Paul Van Dyk, Carl Cox, Armin Van Buuren, DJ Rush, DJ Hell, Westbam, Drum Connection, Miss Djax, Marusha or Chris Liebing. During this time all trucks (usually about 40) are connected to each other and set online to the statue of victory where the turntables are. This is one of the few chances a DJ can ever have to play for a crowd of about one million people.
During the weekend of the parade many clubs held special events and parties and booked well-known DJs. Parties ranged from clubs with one hundred, mostly exclusive guests, to almost raves with several floors and ten thousand dancers. Many people used to come to Berlin only for the parties and miss the parade in order to sleep. Or they enjoyed it with other "ravers" in the park right next to the parade route.
The parade was quite peaceful for an event of its size, seeing few arrests. In 2008, for example, charges were pressed for six robberies, three sexually related offences and forty thefts. Twenty-three participants were caught with drugs and forty-nine were charged with bodily harm. There were 177 parade visitors provisionally arrested by the police. Arrests are usually related to drug crimes and most other incidents feature mostly people passing out due to dehydration or hyperthermia. In 2000, after the parade, a girl under the influence of ecstasy was run over by an S-Bahn after she had been leaning on the door too hard.
At the 2010 Love Parade in Duisburg, the number of people attending allegedly reached 1.4 million – the original expectation was around 800,000 – whereas police believed around 400,000 people were present. 21 people were killed, and more than 500 injured, in an incident near an overcrowded tunnel leading into the festival. At least 20 casualties resulted from suffocation, caused by crowd pressure.
So far nobody has been held financially responsible for this tragic event and the gathering of at least twice the capacity of people at the Duisburg grounds, and German authorities are no longer searching for those who took large profits.
Safety experts and a fire service investigator had previously warned that the site was not suitable for the numbers expected to attend. Rainer Schaller, the festival's organizer and chief executive officer, later said the festival would not continue in future, thus ending the festival.
A preliminary investigation of the ministry of the interior placed heavy blame on the organizers around Rainer Schaller. Schaller in turn claimed that errors by the police in controlling streams of visitors led to the accident.
There are similar festivals in other cities like Zürich's Street Parade, Geneva's Lake Parade, Rotterdam's FFWD Dance Parade and Love Parades in Vienna. In 1997 a Love Parade was held in Sydney, Australia. Unlike its overseas counterparts, however, it was a smaller "rave party" version of the festival, held at the infamous Graffiti Hall of Fame in Redfern. On Saturday 8 July 2000 a Love Parade was held in Roundhay Park, Leeds, United Kingdom sponsored by BBC Radio 1. In 2001, the official UK parade had moved to Newcastle upon Tyne which was to have seen a parade through the streets of Newcastle before ending up on Town Moor but was cancelled after the police refused a license: BBC Radio 1 still hosted a more contained event, however. Since then no Love Parade had taken place in the United Kingdom.
After being held in the North-American Continent for the first time in Mexico (2002), in the fall of 2004, the Love Parade was held in San Francisco. They had held their inaugural Parade in September 2004 with 37,000 attending. The parade was held again in San Francisco in September 2005 as a rousing success drawing over 50–60,000 people. In 2006, the parade was held on 23 September and was renamed Love Fest because the Loveparade Berlin organization did not renew any of their worldwide licenses not already under contract so they could focus on their own event. 2009 was the biggest success of LOVEVOLUTION (formerly Lovefest/Love Parade) with over 100,000 people. The first Love Parade in Santiago was held in 2005 and gathered over 100,000 people; the 2006 version gathered over 200,000 people. The first Love Parade in Caracas was held in June 2007 and gathered over 25,000 people.
Internationally, spin-off Love Parades have taken place in:
|This article is outdated. (December 2011)|
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (July 2010)|
Under German law the state has to pay for security during political demonstrations as well as cleaning up the streets after the demonstration. In the case of a commercial event however, the organizer must cover these expenses. For a large event like the Love Parade the costs are quite high: an estimated €300,000 to €400,000.
The Love Parade was initially held as a "political demonstration" to save costs; however it is organized by two companies set up just for the Love Parade. The name of the demonstration, Love Parade, is a registered trademark and the organizing companies have been busy getting license fees for the use of their name. This not only included merchandise and CDs but also fees for participating clubs, vendors of soft drinks and the like along the streets and even broadcasting fees for the TV stations MTV and Germany's counterpart, VIVA, along with, for the first time, Germany's RTL 2. Love Parade 2006 was the first time in that Berlin's RBB did not broadcast direct from the Siegessäule.
Due to this there was a dispute between the organizers and the city of Berlin every year about the status of the Love Parade and who should bear what costs. Finally in 2001, the courts ruled that the Love Parade had to be held as commercial event. In 2004, the organizers claimed they do not have the necessary funds anymore to host it again. Since there are numerous other Love Parade-like but commercial events in Germany, there are speculations that the funding is not, or at least is not the only reason, for the cancellation, the other being the fast dropping number of participants.
Every German parade has had its own anthem.
|1997||Dr. Motte and WestBam||Sunshine|
|1998||Dr. Motte and WestBam||One World One Future|
|1999||Dr. Motte and WestBam||Music Is the Key|
|2000||Dr. Motte and WestBam||Love Parade 2000|
|2001||The Love Committee||You Can't Stop Us|
|2002||The Love Committee||Access Peace|
|2003||The Love Committee||Love Rules|
|2006||WestBam & the Love Committee||United States of Love|
|2007||WestBam & the Love Committee||Love Is Everywhere (New Location)|
|2008||WestBam & the Love Committee||Highway to Love|
|2010||Anthony Rother||The Art of Love|
|1989||Berlin||Friede, Freude, Eierkuchen|
(Eng.) Peace, Joy, Pancakes
|1990||Berlin||The Future Is Ours||2,000|
|1991||Berlin||My House Is Your House And Your House Is Mine||6,000|
|1992||Berlin||The Spirit Makes You Move||15,000|
|1993||Berlin||The Worldwide Party People Weekend||31,000|
|1994||Berlin||Love 2 Love||110,000|
|1995||Berlin||Peace on Earth||280,000|
|1996||Berlin||We Are One Family||750,000|
|1997||Berlin||Let the Sunshine In Your Heart||1,000,000|
|1998||Berlin||One World One Future||800,000|
|1999||Berlin||Music Is The Key||1,500,000|
|2000||Berlin||One World One Loveparade||1,300,000|
|2000||Leeds||Radio One – One Love||300,000|
|2001||Berlin||Join The Love Republic||800,000|
|2001||Newcastle upon Tyne (cancelled)|
|2005||Santiago||Sal a la calle y baila (eng. Get out there and dance)||100,000|
|2006||Berlin||The Love is Back||1,200,000|
|2006||San Francisco (as LoveFest)|
|2006||Santiago||El Baile es de Todos||200,000|
|2007||Essen||Love is everywhere||1,200,000|
|2007||Caracas||Live the Love!||80,000|
|2007||San Francisco||as LoveFest||89,000|
|2008||Dortmund||Highway to love||1,600,000|
|2008||San Francisco||as LoveFest||120,000|
|2008||Caracas||Keep the Love Alive!|
|2009||San Francisco||as LovEvolution||150,000|
|2010||Duisburg||The Art of Love||1,400,000|
The "Participants" figure is the estimate given by the organizers. Police estimates have been as much as 30% lower. The numbers of the Ruhr Love Parades have probably been tripled. Accurate counts are not available since entry is free and uncontrolled. The mayor of Dortmund and the police confirmed the number of participants in Dortmund.
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