Sirän – Istanbul/Berlin based collective for safe spaces, cultural exchange and genre-bending rave experience

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Beginning of April a new collective in Istanbul was founded, Sirän. Founded by Berlin-based DJ Nene H and Istanbul-based DJ Y.UNAN, Sirän wants to expand the conversation on nightlife, provide safe spaces for marginalized members and create a genre bending rave experience. They also want to strengthen the cultural exchange and networking between artists from Istanbul and Berlin. VibeLab conducted a short interview with the founders to get their vision for Sirän.

“We want to create a humane, open and real space that people can come together and discuss,” says the founders. A safe place in which marginalized members can come together to celebrate, explore and express themselves freely. No discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation, skin color, size or clothing has place here. 

The first of their events Sirän Rendezvous #1 will take place between 5th and 6th of May in Suma Han, Istanbul. It will have a day of workshops followed by a day of artist talks and a party to wrap it all up.

The founders say that they have been separately interested in creating a space like this in Istanbul for some years. They wanted to expand their scope from only conducting music events to highlight the culture more. They also underline that it is very important that the collective does not have a top down structure but it provides a space for everyone to come together and do something together, without competition.

Crushed by harsh economic conditions, the nighttime of Istanbul took a big toll in the last couple of years. As a consequence the scene is changing, people who participate in it are changing and the cultural aspect of it stays in the background. There are also prevalent feelings of stuckness in the scene, highlight the founders. It is exactly here that Sirän is centring its focus because they believe everyone deserves to have fun and parties provide these little breathers to increase joy of life. 

“Big name bookings are already happening in Istanbul that’s why we found it important to help bring the cultural aspect to the forefront. This is a cumulative subject, when it only exists as an event you buy a ticket and go to, the embracement of it, the collectiveness of it doesn’t happen, it stays too cold.”

For their first event Sirän will host talks revolving around subjects such as techno culture, creating awareness in clubs and meaning of safe spaces, key parts of career development, differences between underground and mainstream, creating a community and individuality and the philosophical implications of clubbing. In addition to talks there will also be DJ workshops limited to 10 participants, women and LGBTQIA+ applicants given priority. The founders say that this is very important for them because they want Sirän to be a space to gain confidence and agency for marginalized communities. 

The collective also aims to link Istanbul with a wider network of global cities and create collaborations between them. They are aiming to organize at least 4 events yearly, the next one planned around September with Berghain’s newest resident DJ Sedef Adasï. To know more about the works of the collective check out their Instagram.

Stay tuned for updates on the Global Nighttime Manifesto that shares the ideas and voices of global pioneering collective and organizers and communities. The Manifesto represents our dedication to imagining and fostering a safer, more equitable and sustainable nighttime. The Manifesto also marks the rise of a new wave of global partnerships and advocacy, research and community-based initiatives that aim to improve the nighttime sector.