On September 9, 2021, participants clad in leather outfits attended the Classic Meets Fetish held at the Twelve Apostles Evangelical Church in Berlin's Schoneberg district. Classic Meets Fetish is a for-charity classical music concert with a twist; all attendees and performers wear leather outfits, including leather masks, braces, and vests.
The Twelve Apostles Evangelical Church, a member of the Protestant Twelve Apostles Congregation, smacked in the middle of Berlin's gay neighborhood, hosted more than one hundred leathered-up participants. Tyrone Rontgagner, one of the organizers of Classics Meets Fetish and twice named Mr. Leather Germany, stated that most people equate the fetish scene with sex. "It's just another way to express yourself, like music. Music brings people together just like our dress," Rontgagner explained.
Classics Meets Fetish started in 2015 and has successfully made donations to charity institutions like Hospiz Tauwerk in 2015 and Berliner Aidshilfe in 2016. The classical music concert has been held in the Twelve Apostles Evangelical Church since its first performance, with the approval of Minster Burkhard Bornemann, the church's openly gay minister.
Most of the audience does not attend church regularly. One of the attendees, Pup Luppi, said, "Religion? Not for me." "Classical music, on the other hand, calms me, and like BDSM, it's a sort of game in which the excitement rises and falls," Luppi added.
The concert is filled with exquisitely talented performers performing interpretations of Rachmaninoff's "Valse and Romance" and "Sabre Dance" from Khachaturian.
Eric Beillevaire, a singer-performer in the concert, claims that aside from being fun, the event helps foster better relationships with two different communities. 'It lets you build a bridge between the gay community and our everyday life as a musician," he added.
Evangelical Churches in Germany and most Christian churches in Europe have taken great leaps towards LGBTQ+ acceptance and equality. This year, Britain's Methodist Church has allowed same-sex marriage and banned conversion therapy.