Thomas Burkhalter [*1973] is an ethnomusicologist, cultural producer and music journalist from Bern (Switzerland). He is the founder and artistic director of Norient – Performing Music Research (norient.com), and the director of the Norient Film Festival (NFF). Recent main projects include the documentary film «Contradict» (2019), the AV/theatre/dance performance «Clash of Gods» (2018), and the re-launch of Norient (2020).
Burkhalter published the book «Local Music Scenes and Globalization: Transnational Platforms in Beirut» (Routledge)(PHD), and co-edited the books «The Arab Avant Garde: Musical Innovation in the Middle East» (Wesleyan University Press), «Seismographic Sounds – Visions of a New World» (Norient Books), and «Out of the Absurdity of Life – Global Music» (Norient/Traversion). As a cultural producer he works transdisciplinary: e.g. the audio-visual performances «Sonic Traces: From the Arab World», «Sonic Traces: From Switzerland»; the exhibition «Seismographic Sounds – Visions of a New World» (e.g. ZKM Karlsruhe, CTM Berlin, Base Milano, 2015-2017); the documentary films «contradict» (2019), and «Buy More Incense – British-Asian Musicians in the UK» (2000). Burkhalter places great emphasis on transdisciplinary approaches between empiric research, theory and practice.