Electronic music spectacular, Time Warp celebrates 25 years

TIME WARP sets the benchmark for electronic music festivals and this year they celebrate their milestone 25th birthday and continue to be an essential experience for any discerning fan of electronic music.

 Sven Väth and Maceo Plex... Time Warp
Sven Väth and Maceo Plex… Time Warp

For almost two decades the event has been held in Mannheim, Germany having moved from the Ludwigshafen before settling in 2000 at ‘The Mothership’ Markethalle, Mannheim in 2000. The event stands out because of its uncompromised production levels but also the because of the forward thinking line ups that comprise of the cream of the techno titans who return year after year playing alongside some of the very best underground up and coming artists that Europe has to offer. Time Warp has grown from being a European highlight in the dance music calendar to become an international behemoth with global editions of the event being held in New York, Amsterdam, Sao Paulo and Milan.

The spectacular festival has to be seen and heard to be believed and is the ultimate marriage of sound and visual technology. Installations combining fabric, technology, video and light embrace the various dancefloors with crystal clear sound systems completing a unique experience. Time Warp pioneered stage production as an art form and each edition of the festival sets new standards for others to follow.

Beginning life in 1994, Time Warp quickly became the go to party for house and techno fans from across the world. The event was an element in the decision to recognise Mannheim as a UNESCO City of Music.


 Flyer for the first edition of Time Warp in 1994
Flyer for the first edition of Time Warp in 1994

The UNESCO Creative Cities Network comprise of cities that have identified creativity and music as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development. Head of Marketing at Time Warp promoters Cosmopop, Robin Ebinger told us:

We have a close working relationship with all authorities in different departments and levels. Of course there still are people who are happy when the show is over. The vast majority however, really support Time Warp.

We have strong support from the Mannheim Cultural Scene and the Mayor with his team is supporting us a lot. They recognise Time Warp’s cultural impact.

In 2014, Mannheim was awarded UNESCO City of Music. When Mannheim applied for this program and the title, Time Warp was one of the key elements as we are the most international event in the entire region. The UNESCO Creative Cities Network comprises cities that have identified creativity and music as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development.

Time Warp is not only a highlight in the calendar of many electronic music fans but also for the DJs performing there. Heavyweights like Carl Cox, Sven Väth, Richie Hawtin and Laurent Garnier have been there almost every year since the first party. Managing Director Steffen Charles told us:

Some of the artists have been there from year one and have continued to support us ever since. We have been working together for 25 years and became friends as well. All of them are trailblazers in their field and have brought a substantial input for the history and development of techno. We try to deliver the perfect set up and working environment for all our artists, and I think that passion helps them to deliver their best. We want to create a place where everybody feels at home and welcomed.

 Laurent Garnier performing at Time Warp in 2000
Laurent Garnier performing at Time Warp in 2000

Steffen continues:

Our artist selection reflects our philosophy of presenting international techno headlining DJs and live acts amongst local talent and hotshots. We have selected them for their musical excellence and dynamic shows.

Electronic music provides the perfect audio pallette to create the incredible backdrops for revellers to fully immerse themselves into. This was always the aim right from the very first party in 1994. Steffen says:

It was always about creating a whole experience for our guests. Sound was and still is the most important thing but even at the first edition of Time Warp we had elaborate decoration elements – we just wanted to create a very unique atmosphere. Over the years we continued working on this concept and have elaborated further on the idea of a synergy of sound and light – back then it was more decoration than technology of course.

 Sven Väth performing at Time Warp in 1997
Sven Väth performing at Time Warp in 1997

Steffen continues:

From 2001, 2002 on, event technology made a massive leap forward. Modern computer programs made it possible to plan whole shows and floor designs in advance in front of the screen. Our production and creative team grew with this amazing progress of technology. Everyone on the team gives their best for each edition and we are always on the lookout for new ideas and inspiration, bringing in designers and creative minds from all over the world. It really helps that Time Warp Mannheim found its home in 2000 – after many editions at Maimarkthalle, we know every corner of the venue.

 Time Warp... Reach for the lasers
Time Warp… Reach for the lasers

One thing is for certain, anyone lucky enough to be attending this years event in Mannheim is in for a treat as Time Warp celebrates 25 years of ground breaking events. The advice is to get there early and to do the full journey. With so many amazing artists on offer the best route is go with the flow and immerse yourself in an unforgettable experience.

Quotes taken from Mark Gwinnett’s interview with Cosmopop Managing Director Steffen Charles and Head of Marketing Robin Ebinger which you can read HERE

See every flyer from the 25 year history of Time Warp HERE.

Tickets for Time Warp 25 are still available CLICK HERE.


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