Site-specific Sound Installation (2020)

The sound installation The Invisible Choir examines the role of singing at the Ravensbrück concentration camp. Songs were not only performed in secret, but also compulsory and sung under threat of punishment. Thus singing was not only an expression of grief, consolation, encouragement or protest, but was also used by the guards as a means of exercising psychological violence against the prisoners. At the same time, some popular songs such as Silent Night were accepted by the guards.

In the course of his research, Moritz Fehr selected nine songs that exemplify different functions of singing in the daily life of the camp. This selection was newly arranged and recorded in improvised form, leaving those songs out, that had to be sung under restraint. The new vocal recordings form the material for the installation which can be heard in the tea kitchen as well as on the balcony of the female guards’ living quarters.

The installation is an intervention part of the project Pictures, Voices and Clichés, presented within In the SS-Auxiliary, an exhibition on the Female Guards of the Ravensbrück Women‘s Concentration Camp.

Singing and Improvisations:
Julia Dörr, Sina Jacka, Anna Kortmann, Salome Muhr, Johanna Sahm, Elena Elsa Tsantidis, Lydia L. Weißert

Choir Conducting and Arrangements:
Wolfgang Tacke

A production of the Mahn- und Gedenkstätte Ravensbrück (Ravensbrück Memorial Museum) and the Stiftung Brandenburgische Gedenkstätten (Brandenburg Memorials Foundation).
Funded by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes (German Federal Cultural Foundation).

Further information on the exhibition project Images, Voices and Clichés: The Female Wardens of the Ravensbrück Women’s Concentration Camp – Artistic interventions at the Memorial Museum Ravensbrück

Image and cinematography credit: Smina Bluth