WATER & SOUND is an annual festival for global contemporary music and world music in the historic city of Augsburg, Germany. Aimed at reaching out and challenging a diverse audience from all walks of society with unfamiliar music and sounds, the programming is focused on winning over the listener through sheer musical force. The program maps global developments in contemporary music between tradition and modernity in areas such as West African Afrobeat, North African Desert Rock, progressive currents of East and West European music and the Balkans, music of the Arab underground, and much more. Artists to have performed include Fatoumata Diawara, Seun Kuti & Egypt80, Taraf de Haidukks, Fanfare Ciocarlia, Konono No1, the Portico Quartet, Yasmine Hamdan, Tamikrest, Vieux Farka Toure, Dakhabrakha, Kocani Orkestar, Emel Mathlouthi, Bombino, Ibibio Sound Machine, Ebo Taylor, the Warsaw Village Band and many others. Since 2019 Augsburg is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its historic water management system – a City of Water.

Since 2022, the Festival has been expanded according to a concept by artistic director Girisha Fernando to include the multi-dimensionality of the global theme of water – a festival for global contemporary music in the water city of Augsburg (UNESCO World Heritage Site). Along thematic focal points around regions of water and music culture, a diverse program is created. The global diversity of music is depicted here, with elementary references being made between music, culture and water. The concept incorporates international greats of global music as well as local artists and exclusive in-house productions. In addition to open-air stage in the centre of the old town venues are established along Augsburg’s sites of the Wolrd Heritage, along waterways and the beautiful lake, the Kuhsee. The festival also features the Waterbird – an interactive art performance with music, the development of an urban ritual. A supporting program in cooperation with the World Heritage Office of the City of Augsburg additionally contextualizes the global significance of water as a resource and explores the areas between art and science, imagination and reality.


Cultural Office of the City of Augsburg
Bahnhofstr 18 1/3a
D 86150 Augsburg

Artistic Director

Girisha Fernando

Press contact

Tina Bühner | Kulturmagd PR
+49 (0) 151 12 90 8000

Main sponsors

Cooperation partner

Media partner

with the support of