Volker Goetze's work transcends traditional norms. His research doesn't start with recordings or books but begins by actually traveling and spending time in places of interest and seeking out the local master musicians. He believes in learning by doing and establishing personal connections.
His time in West Africa inspired him to direct and produce a feature documentary about the oral history of West Africa. He also produced and composed a live performance documentary recounting the creation of the African harp featuring his duo partner and kora-virtuoso Ablaye
Cissoko. The duo has performed sold out concerts at the most prestigious concert halls in Europe and festivals in North America.
He founded his own big band in 2007 and recorded 'NY 10027' and has material ready for a follow up recording. His quintet album featuring Richie Barshay and Oran Etkin (two musicians from the proposed quartet) was released last year including two European release tours and a concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.
Recently Volker Goetze composed a 360 video and spatial audiovisual composition about New York City's mass grave on Hart Island titled 'Unique Places of Death NYC', which will premiere at LaMaMA in April 2019. Last year, he completed a photography and music project called 'Secret Island' about Staten Island telling the untold stories and historic events going back to the prehistoric ice age. Currently he is interviewing and filming homeless of NYC to compose a mobile Virtual Reality pop-up installation. In 2017, Volker was awarded a highly competitive grant by Design Culture and Staten Island Arts to implement his vision of NYC's first sculpture hike called "Sonic Gates" on Staten Island's North Shore.
Volker Goetze is an international touring performer, composer and media artist. He has performed and presented his work at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Paris Jazz Festival, World Festival of Sacred Music (Los Angeles), Caixa Forum Madrid and the Opera Festival in Munich. His work fuels cross-cultural dialogue incorporates multiple disciplines and utilizes cutting edge technology. Goetze has explored the oral culture of West Africa and its influences on black culture in America. His first film GRIOT, on the oral music tradition in West Africa, has developed into a multimedia performance documentary. Goetze was invited to be a panelist by the Apollo Theater and the New York Foundation for the Arts. He is currently preparing a 3D sound and 360 video composition and performance about Hart Island for the La MaMa Experimental Theater Club as well as directing a virtual reality documentary about the homeless of Staten Island.