Yo! Sissy Festival

Berlin's brashest queer festival

Words By Connie Hwong

Date: 28.07.17 – 29.07.17
Venue: Festsaal Kreuzberg

Possibly Berlin’s brashest queer music festival, Yo! Sissy has selected Festsaal Kreuzberg to host its third iteration. The two-day event is hosted by local drag icon Pansy and her House of Presents crew, and it will be packed with performances from local and international acts that range from electronica to the avant garde.

Friday’s programme kicks off with dreamy electro-pop and lazy beats from Islamiq Grrrls, an appearance from London drag star Maxi More, and the gender-bending burlesque stylings of Bourgeoisie. The night will undoubtedly whip itself into a frenzy with a visit from Vitalic (Pascal Arbez-Nicolas), whose inescapably catchy French techno/house is the perfect antidote to Berlin’s minimal club beats. While his early hits like ‘My Friend Dario’ and ‘Poney’ quickly became dance floor standards, he has continued to produce lush melodies that redefine the cold contours of electronic music; 2012’s ‘Rave Age’ was a cheeky response to the nu-rave movement, while this year’s ‘Voyager’ is a camp ode to spacey italo disco. Swedish DJ duo Karim & Karam will close out the evening, with a raucous set  spanning everything from bhangra to B’more club.

On Saturday, the Real Housewives of Neukolln will bring their self-described trash drag performance collective to the stage alongside Queens Against Borders and and Umlilo & Stash Crew. The musical lineup will then  get seriously spunky: Gurr’s summery punk rock has undertones of the raw power that defined the original riot grrrl movement. The evening will culminate in a special appearance by Chicks on Speed, the grand dames of the feminist art/electroclash movement. They’ve promised a bespoke performance just for the Yo! Sissy crowd, based on their ‘We Are Data’ remix with DJ Cora Novoa. If their previous work – including collaborations with Yoko Ono and tributes to Edward Snowden – is any indication, this festival appearance is not to be missed.

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