common-place Berlín

Leo Zhao

Born in Beijing and based in Berlin, Leo Zhao is a rhythm ambassador, musicologist, and essayist, bringing a poly-cultural understanding of sound to his deeply percussive borderless sets, and applying historical materialist analysis to the evolution of social dance. Dj Zhao draws from wildly different times and places, connecting "East" and "West", acoustic and electronic, traditional and hyper-modern. As comfortable in Berlin's Berghain, Watergate, and Fusion Festival as he is in Uganda's Nyege Nyege, or legendary clubs deep in Soweto, Dj Zhao rejuvenates dance floors with irresistibly funky polyrhythms and an expansive sense of sonic adventure.

As a musicologist and journalist, Dj Zhao's focus is on the social and political dimensions of rhythmic sociality and its mutations as shaped by particular material historical conditions and processes. Dj Zhao has published and appeared in magazines such as ThisIsAfrica, Usbek&Rica, Das Argument, and Starwax, given lectures, talks, and contributed to panel discussions in places like Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), Robert Johnson/University of Design Offenbach, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm (Frankfurt), and Iwalewahaus/University of Bayreuth.

Leo Also works as an Art Director.