God Goes Deep invites everyone to leave the business of their everyday lives and spend some moments of relaxation with powerful music in Copenhagen’s Cathedral. Palma Seitzmayer—stage name DJ Palmalova, co-founder and Head of Music at this non-profit, non-political ambient event—tells us how something that started as a chance encounter turned into one of the city’s most innovative events.
When in 2011 Christian Monrad, the Night Priest at Vor Frue Kirke, met with DJ Palmalova, the idea of collaborating to create a unique music experience was born. However the decision to organize an event that would be reoccurring was only taken after Palmalova played an impromptu DJ set one night.
The grand and awe-inspiring hall of Copenhagen’s Church of Our Lady cathedral (Vor Frue Kirke) in combination with the ambient genre of music created a peaceful and unique atmosphere that Palmalova wanted to share with as many people as possible. “Ambient music really has the power to transport you places, if you allow yourself to focus and relax, and being able to share this experience with friends, family, and the wider community is beautiful,” says Palmalova.
Seven years later, a great number of national and international DJs from the ambient scene have performed at the non-profit and non-political music event, attracting a wide audience. Yet many wonder what inspired DJ Palmalova to organize music concerts in a church, and how it is even possible to get permission to hold a DJ set in one of Copenhagen’s most significant monuments.
“To understand this, first we need to understand the relaxed religious views of Copenhageners who don’t appreciate having others’ ideologies pushed down their throat. Having our liberties and being able to express them respectfully is very important. With this in mind, a lot of our churches have become more open-minded, swinging their doors open to anyone without prejudice. It’s this open-mindedness that has allowed stronger communities to form, bigger conversations to evolve, and a trust from those outside the church that they are welcome inside. Aside from this open-mindedness, churches are architecturally stunning, and really ask of your peace and soul to come forward, perfectly complementing the idea that ambient music transports you somewhere else,” explains the renowned DJ.
Even though many established and up-and-coming artists have been invited to share their music in the peaceful surroundings of Copenhagen’s Cathedral since 2011, according to the founder of the event, choosing the right artists isn’t always an easy process. The cathedral’s size makes it a very tricky room to play in and the artists must truly understand the concept of God Goes Deep and show the required empathy and humility. Fortunately DJ Palmalova says that, over all these years it has only happened five times that the artists didn’t manage to live up to the room’s and the event’s standards.
God Goes Deep isn’t simply a music event. Its concept is based on the idea that we all need a break from the day-to-day of our busy lives, and a place where we can relieve stress. Therefore, DJ Palmalova plans on bringing God Goes Deep to other churches around Europe as well and expand the already large ambient community.
The unique and captivating music event takes place in Copenhagen’s Cathedral in the heart of Copenhagen’s city center on most Friday nights, for two seasons a year. If you want to get a taste in advance, make sure to check out the event’s past recordings.