Adam Weishaupt

Seen by David Ulrich

AdamWeishaupt_038_byDavidUlrichAdam Weishaupt is the moniker of Holger Hilgers, a German DJ, booker and promoter who is currently living in Vienna, Austria. Born 1976 in Bergheim (no, that isn’t a typo!) near Cologne, Hilgers has since managed to be in the right place at the right time. From its earliest days on, he has been a part of the Electronic Music scene and has worked in almost every of its fields, making international connections and travelling the world in the process. Meanwhile, he perfected his eclectic DJing style which ranges from chilling deep Ambient to feverish sweaty Techno with breakbeats thrown in for good measure. To Hilgers, the listening experience is a spiritual one and DJing thus a matter of character.

His knowledge of Electronic Music is as vast as Hilgers’s musical vision is firm. Adam Weishaupt’s sound has fittingly been described as »futuristic«, a term to which the avid science fiction fan can whole-heartedly subscribe. In his sets, which he cunningly adjusts to fit each individual situation, he aims to create a new, shared experience for everyone present, a collective catharsis and conjunction of energies in a room between people over time. Music, Hilgers argues, has no attributes in itself, but evokes feelings and moods and thus can be used as a means to amplify or contradict your emotional state and eventually influence your personal progress.

Having already collected Hi-NRG and Breakdance records from an early age on, the teenaged Hilgers retrieved a tape from Cologne’s then newly opened Space Club, one of the first hubs of the emerging Techno scene in West Germany. He successively started to horde and create his own mixed tapes with which he DJ’d at private parties years before he was even legally allowed to drink. That is how he became the supposedly youngest regular at both Space Club (later renamed Warehouse) – where he started working at age 16 – and Bonn’s Ballhaus, which he frequented every Wednesday night in those energy-fuelled early years of the 1990s.

After building a reputation as a DJ under a variety of monikers, he settled for the name Weishaupt which he had seen on a signboard in the industry district of Cologne, later adding the first name Adam as a reference to the alleged founder of the illuminati. To Hilgers, the mythical story of the controversial figure mirrored the spirit of what attending raves meant in those days: A handful deviants meeting in a secretive place to perform mysterious rituals unbeknownst to anyone from the oblivious outside world.

Soon Hilgers began to widen not only his musical horizons, but also started travelling extensively wherever the music would bring him. You could find him at Berlin’s legendary Tresor, Kassel’s Stammheim or, more and more regularly, at Stuttgart’s Neue Heimat (»New Home« in English). Neue Heimat’s name proved to be prophetic, for Hilgers moved to a small town near Stuttgart in the early noughties. When he was not jet setting throughout Europe, he simultaneously worked at Gießen’s Pentatonik record store as well as Frankfurt’s Delirium and eventually co-founded the Delirium booking agency in 2005, managing acts like Motor City Soul, Otto von Schirach and others.

In 2007, he moved to Berlin. There, it only took him two weeks to fully arrive on the scene. He started working at the Freizeitglauben record store right away and DJ’d at prestigious clubs like Bar25 and Suicide Circus before launching the Krake Festival in 2009. The prestigious festival’s line-up mirrored Hilger’s eclectic taste as well as it was an implicit expression of his own musical and artistic visions, connecting music and arts from all over the place.

Having achieved everything Hilgers had aimed and hoped for, he again relocated in 2013. After a brief stay in Graz, Austria, he relocated to Vienna where he has already become of vital part of the local club scene. Not that he has kissed Berlin goodbye for good: As a curator and resident of the Rummels Bucht club he still can be seen regularly in Germany’s capitol.