Zermatt Unplugged Summer Weekends: Music-Comeback warms the Heart

25/07/2021

Finally audiences, enjoying music, meeting people again: For artists, crew, guests, and locals, the first Zermatt Unplugged Summer Weekends were an emotional restart after the pandemic break. Twice for four days, national and international acts in the village and on the mountain presented a total of 75 concerts on eleven stages in very special settings. For the organizers, the pandemic was also a chance to further develop.

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The wonderful, summery mountain scenery of Zermatt, guitar sounds and singing in the air and small stages on every corner in the village and along hiking trails, on which artists like Mighty Oaks, Anna Rossinelli, Morcheeba or Lo & Leduc let their musical emotions roam freely. As hosts, the restaurateurs also contributed to the incomparable atmosphere of the first Zermatt Unplugged Summer Weekends (15-18 & 22-25 July). «It was a very special experience for all of us after having had nothing happen for so long», says Managing Director Rolf Furrer. The safety measures developed beforehand were well implemented.

The idea for the Summer Weekends had been dormant in the minds of the organizers for a long time. «Well, the pandemic propelled us to put our plan into practice earlier», said Rolf Furrer. «Like so many in the industry, we were compelled to rethink and implement what was planned within a new framework of conditions – many exciting things have emerged from this.»

New Format of Artistic Exchange and Creation

The result is a format that is all about the creative process and Zermatt representing a place for inspiration, culinary experiences, nature, and encounters. The focus is on small stages and singer-songwriters who travel to Zermatt for several days, where they receive a platform for artistic exchange and creation. The special indoor locations include the Vernissage, where the festival once began, and the stylish loft designed by the artist Heinz Julen, in which the «At Home With...» format takes place. The outdoor stages include the Adler Hitta, Chez Vrony, Stafelalp, and Blatten mountain huts as well as the stages in the village in Cervo, Alex, and at the Campfire.

For the first time, Zermatt Unplugged offered six young Swiss singer-songwriters a creative and interactive program during the Summer Weekends. For four days, the «Mountain Academy» worked intensively and interdisciplinary and made music – with the support of experienced musicians, coaches, and experts.

The aim is for the Summer Weekends to be sustainable. They are to take place again in late summer 2022 and complement the established Zermatt Unplugged Festival, which takes place in April.
Special thanks from the organizers go to the Zermatt Matterhorn destination, all sponsors and partners, the canton of Valais, and Loterie Romande, who made the Summer Weekends possible in the first place.

And of course the musicians. «I saw all the artists on the eleven stages, and they all came up with something very special for our audience. That impressed me in a very personal way», concludes Rolf Furrer.

The next Zermatt Unplugged festival takes place from 5-10 April 2022.

Review in pictures: Media Gallery here.