Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono

Celebrating Her 80th Birthday

We are proud to present the world premiere of Yoko Ono’s birthday concert at Volksbühne in Berlin, when the living legend turned 80 and performed at her cool birthday bash.

"It happened at the time of my life, when I least expected it." Yoko Ono decided to celebrate her 80th birthday with a concert in legendary Volksbühne theatre in Berlin. She chose Volksbühne because of her admiration for Bertolt Brecht who has played an important role there.

The concert with the Plastic Ono Band was a vivid demonstration of Yoko Ono's strong performance power. The two songs played in this video ('It Happened' & 'Waiting For The D Train’) are the first two songs of the concert that also featured appearances from Peaches, Michael Stipe (REM) and Rufus and Martha Wainwright.

Avant-garde artist Yoko Ono (b.1933), derisively known as the most famous widow in the world, was already an recognized artist before she met John Lennon. Yoko (which translates to "ocean child") was born in Tokyo, but moved to New York when she was 18, later becoming one of the most important representatives of the fluxus movement. Today, Yoko Ono is finally recognized as an influential artist who pushes the boundaries of the art, film, music and theatre media. The present time marks a renewed resurgence of interest and celebration of her work.

Musicians:

Sean Lennon – guitar, piano, bass
Yuka C. Honda- keyboard / laptop (Cibo Matto)
Yuko Araki – drums (Cornelius)
Nels Cline – guitar (Wilco)
Michael Leonhart – trumpet (Steely Dan / Donald Fagen)
Charlotte Kemp Muhl – bass, guitar (Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger)
Jared Samuel -keyboard (Invisible Familiars)

Recorded at The Volksbühne Theater in Berlin, February 17th, 2013 by Yoko Ono’s production team.

Supported by Nordea-fonden

  • Sammy Baloji

    The Past in Front of Us

    Through his intriguing and poignant pictures, Congolese artist and photographer Sammy Baloji confronts the Western portrayal of his country by linking old photographs from Belgian colonial times with contemporary ones. The result is captivating.

  • COBE

    Monuments of the Future

    Dan Stubbergaard, founder of the internationally praised COBE Architects, takes us around his hometown Copenhagen in Denmark to show and discuss what motivates their exciting socially conscious and highly innovative projects.

  • Juliana Spahr

    Politics in a Poem

    “Politics are constantly shaping literary practices.” Pioneering and conceptually challenging American poet Juliana Spahr here ponders on the tenuous, ever-changing overlap between poetry and politics.

  • Christien Meindertsma

    The Illusion of Safety

    Does increased security make you feel safer? Cool Dutch designer and artist Christien Meindertsma investigates this issue in her compelling art book ’Checked Baggage’, which comprises a week’s worth of objects confiscated in Schiphol Airport after 9/11.

  • Michael Ondaatje

    We Can’t Rely on One Voice

    Man Booker Prize winner Michael Ondaatje, widely known for the novel ‘The English Patient’, here contemplates how his novels always start with a landscape and end with a conversation. It’s through these different voices that his stories truly come alive.

  • Susan Hiller

    Advice to the Young

    Too many people think that you can only be creative within the field of art: “It’s not just a little ghetto called ‘art’ that allows you to do that.” Internationally acclaimed artist Susan Hiller advises younger colleagues not to make art unless they have to.

  • Alfredo Jaar

    Images are not Innocent

    "A million people were killed in 100 days under the criminal indifference of the world". In this interview artist Alfredo Jaar reminds us of the importance of images and why they are not innocent.

  • Michael Ondaatje

    The Music in the Words

    “The rhythm of music has been the biggest influence on my writing – it’s not Wordsworth, it’s Ray Charles.” Michael Ondaatje, one of Canada’s greatest authors, on how music and writing are so connected that they must sometimes be separated.

  • Susan Hiller

    Stories from the Other Side

    A cascade of voices belonging to people who have been declared physically dead, but lived to tell the story, comes together in a ghostlike installation of 104 screens. Experience the intriguing art installation by the influential American artist Susan Hiller.

  • Jeffrey Eugenides

    Reading from 'The Marriage Plot'

    “The problem of being Superman was that everybody else was so slow.” Enjoy this video of Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Jeffrey Eugenides reading a hilarious section from his novel ’The Marriage Plot’.

  • Umberto Eco

    Advice to the Young

    Best-selling Italian novelist Umberto Eco here advises aspiring writers not to take themselves too seriously, but to go step by step and remember that: “You’re 10 per cent inspiration and 90 per cent perspiration.”

  • Norman Foster

    Striving for Simplicity

    “Quality is an attitude of mind.” The great architectural mastermind of our time Norman Foster, who turned 80 in June 2015, here reflects on a long and prosperous career – and life – with prominent buildings and more than 1,000 employees all over the world.