730 Special Moments for Munich

730 Special Moments for Munich Happy and proud: Joanne Leighton, choreographer of the »Türmer« project, in front of the Shelter high above the roofs of Munich Benedikt Feiten/GMG

Last Sunday, the last participant in the »Türmer« performance – Munich’s edition of Joanne Leighton’s Vigil project – scaled the roof of the Philharmonic Hall to stand vigil over Munich at sunrise.

» One city, one year, one unique performance for all

That’s the motto of the performance project that the Gasteig launched together with the artist and choreographer Joanne Leighton in Munich on 12 December last year. The interest the project elicited was impressive: Places, which were allocated every four months, were booked out within just a few minutes each time. A total of 730 participants were able to take part in this community art project. Each day, at sunrise and sunset, a »Türmer« stood vigil over Munich for an hour – without clock, mobile phone or other distractions.

A spectacular location

»The roof of the Gasteig is one of the most wonderful places imaginable for the vigil. From this spectacular location, the whole city becomes a stage,« says Joanne Leighton. The artist has already realised her project in several European cities. Since the beginning of March, 558 participants spent their vigil in the Shelter on the roof of the Philharmonic Hall, which was specially designed for the Gasteig. When skies are clear, it affords a view all the way to the Alps. Before March, during the winter lockdown, 172 participants chose their own lookouts for their »golden hour« after sunrise or before sunset. Besides the own living room window or balcony, they included such places as the Monopteros in the English Garden, the Olympiaberg or the Nockherberg.

A roaring success, despite adverse conditions

» Despite the limitations in the early months, the project was a roaring success,« says Gasteig managing director Max Wagner. »Türmer München is typical for what the Gasteig is all about: being a forum for everyone, young and old, small and large, disabled and able-bodied, across all social strata and all nations. We are grateful that we had this opportunity and that it was so well received. For many, their hour-long vigil left a lasting impression.«

The Türmer blog: a kaleidoscope of extremes

The participants’ impressions and reflections can be read on the Türmer blog at The blog posts, which will also be published in printed form, are a kaleidoscopic account of a year of extremes. Amid the Corona lockdown in December 2020, one Vigil wrote, for example: »I have lived with great certainties until now. I have never experienced a war. Terrible news never affected my family. Now I thought about whether the last of the Vigils on 12 December would actually make it to the Shelter«. But he did!

The great Us

Bild zeigt den letzten Türmer Münchens im Aussichtsraum
Munich's last Vigil: Max Schlegel
©Benedikt Feiten/GMG

On Sunday 12 December 8:55 AM on the dot, the last Vigil, Max Schlegel, left the Shelter high up on the roof of the Philharmonic Hall and wrote the final entry in the Türmer blog: »Loneliness becomes togetherness. Munich awakens and the Vigil laughs. I conclude this wonderful project and thank all the contributors for the great Us!«

Immediately after that, all Vigils, the project team and the many voluntary helpers met with the project’s initiator Joanne Leighton for a large – albeit digital, due to the pandemic – closing party. Read the summary of the Türmer closing event here.





The »Türmer München« year in pictures. The most captivating views from the Gasteig’s roof.

Alle Fotos der Galerie: © Gasteig München GmbH

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