Crowds rave as Love Parade returns to Berlin

17th July 2006, Comments 0 comments

17 July 2006, BERLIN - The world's biggest dance party got under way this weekend with hundreds of thousands of ravers gyrating to deafening electronic music at Berlin's Love Parade. Back in the capital after a two-year break, the event brought in a new mix of dance music played by 230 DJs from 17 nations, among them Westbam, Paul van Dyk and Louis Osbourne, son of heavy metal legend Ozzy Osbourne. Alongside the techno beat that characterized previous Love Parades, the 2006 edition saw a more eclectic danc

17 July 2006

BERLIN - The world's biggest dance party got under way this weekend with hundreds of thousands of ravers gyrating to deafening electronic music at Berlin's Love Parade.

Back in the capital after a two-year break, the event brought in a new mix of dance music played by 230 DJs from 17 nations, among them Westbam, Paul van Dyk and Louis Osbourne, son of heavy metal legend Ozzy Osbourne.

Alongside the techno beat that characterized previous Love Parades, the 2006 edition saw a more eclectic dance floor sound that included jazz-rock, trance and hip-hop.

The music boomed out across Berlin's Tiergarten Park from 40 floats or Love Trucks and 13 fixed stages as scantily-clad ravers blew on whistles and shook their bodies to the beat.

Mingling among the crowd in the bright Berlin sunshine were so-called Love Guards, who distributed earplugs, ice spray, glucose tablets and even contraceptives if things got too hot.

The parade took place along the same avenue where one million people gathered less than a week ago to watch the final of the football World Cup on giant television screens.

Police spoke of a sluggish start, but the numbers increased as the day wore on and crowds poured into the party zone between two of Berlin's most famous landmarks - the Brandenburg Gate and the Victory Column.

Berlin's last Love Parade was held in 2003, but lack of funding, disputes over who should pay for the post-parade clean-up and damage to the park prevented the event from taking place over the past two years.

This year it was revived under the motto "The Love is Back" thanks to funding from a new sponsor who contributed 1 million euros ($1.25 million) towards the cost.

The new sponsor is Rainer Schaller, who owns a lucrative chain of fitness studios that go under the name McFit.

Started in 1989 by techno DJ Dr Motte, the Love Parade attracted more than 1.5 million visitors at the peak of its popularity a decade later.

But attendances declined as music tastes began to change in the new millennium and by 2002 fewer than 600,000 people made the trip to the parade.

Organizers said they would be happy to break the million barrier again this year, but would still be pleased if only half that number turned up.

DPA

Subject: German news

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