hr2 culture

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Infobox radio tower icon
hr2 culture
Station logo
"Stay curious!"
Radio station ( public service )
reception analogue terrestrial , cable , satellite , DAB & web radio
Reception area HesseHesse Hesse
Start of transmission October 15, 1950
Broadcaster Hessian radio
Intendant Manfred Krupp
List of radio stations

hr2-kultur is the second radio program of the Hessischer Rundfunk (hr). It is a cultural program, comparable to SWR2 and Deutschlandradio Kultur , and besides hr-info it is the only (historically significantly older) TV program for hr. Hr2 is the only program at hr with long word and music offers and free of commercial advertising.


The program has existed since October 15, 1950 and has only been broadcast on VHF frequencies from the start . The official name was “Second Program” well into the 1980s. The abbreviation hr2 , which has been common in-house for some time, did not establish itself until the mid-1980s - initially as a supplement to the official name - also in the public image. With the introduction of the hr4 program on October 6, 1986, all hr radio programs were then uniformly named hr1 , hr2, hr3 and hr4. In September 2007 the name was changed to hr2-kultur .

hr2 is an important cultural factor in Hessen, as it reflects the cultural life in Hessen and is often a co-production partner of the most important cultural institutions in the state. Furthermore, hr2 is considered a cultural producer, as its programs are often public events; This applies in particular to the two ensembles : the Frankfurt Radio Big Band and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra .

The media analysis published in July 2015 showed a daily reach of 84,000 listeners for hr2 on weekdays. In the media analysis published in March 2014, hr2 had 94,000 listeners in Hesse on working days, in July 2014 97,000 listeners in Hesse.

Controversy about the “reallocation” of frequencies in 2013

On February 11, 2013, the Hessischer Rundfunk announced at short notice on its website that it would broadcast hr2-kultur - with the exception of a few filler stations - nationwide only on two VHF frequencies. A little later, shortly after 2 p.m., the other VHF frequencies were completely switched off. The remaining frequencies went to the HR-iNFO information wave and the YOU FM youth program . The frequencies went into operation with the new programs from 6 a.m. on the following day. Listeners who were only able to receive hr2-kultur via the frequencies that had been “rededicated” - according to the hr - were referred to the other reception channels.

However, the Biedenkopf and Hardberg sites , which had been abandoned, did not yet transmit via DAB +, so that terrestrial reception of hr2-kultur was no longer possible in these areas. Also in the southern Odenwald, hr2-kultur could no longer be received. A spokesman for the Hessischer Rundfunk confirmed to the Darmstädter Echo that “there are gaps in reception in peripheral areas” that the transmission line would accept. In a press release issued on February 14, 2013 about the new reception options for hr-iNFO, it is not mentioned that these are frequencies that had been used by hr2-kultur up to then, and like the hr2 listeners from now on should be supplied. In the meantime, however, hr2-kultur can be received again from the Biedenkopf and Hardberg locations via DAB +.

The Hessian State Authority for Private Broadcasting and New Media criticized that it was just as little informed in advance of the frequency switch as the Deutschlandradio . The LPR was "presented with a fait accompli." The HR was not authorized to change the frequencies without authorization. The private broadcaster Hit Radio FFH spoke of "sleight of hand with the HR to get a technical advantage" and demanded a legal review of the frequency change. The spokesman for the Hessian state government, on the other hand, took the position that HR had acted lawfully because it was about frequencies that, according to the old legal situation, had been allocated before private broadcasting was introduced in 1988. Due to the conformity of the frequency change with the media regulations in Hesse, there is no legal objection.

In the radio news of the Radio Eins media magazine, Kai Ludwig pointed out the “ paradigm shift ”, “only allowing the mainstream formats hr 1, hr 3 and hr 4 an expanded VHF broadcasting and with hr 2 the only remaining Hessian program Broadcasting, which covers the area of ​​so-called high culture, is to be equated with the original digital additional offers. ”Based on the recommendation ITU-R BS.412-9 (“ Planning standards for terrestrial FM radio on VHF ”) of the International Telecommunication Union ,“ from an area-wide Stereo coverage according to these criteria [...] can no longer be spoken at hr 2, with the gaps west of the Rhön and above all - there up to the actual total failure - in the vicinity of the border with North Rhine-Westphalia ”, adds Ludwig in a contribution in the radio courier.

On December 1, 2015, hr-iNFO changed programs on the VHF transmitters in Marburg (98.5 MHz), Korbach (102.6 MHz), Bad Hersfeld (106.9 MHz) and Alsfeld (104.0 MHz) hr2 culture takes place. The gaps in the VHF coverage of hr2-kultur that appeared in February 2013 were thus filled to a small extent.

With the restart of DAB + in 2011, the hr also began the nationwide construction of its DAB + network (Channel 7B) in Hesse in the same year. At the same time, this led to an increase in the range of hr2-kultur and all other hr radio programs. Finally, the described loss of range could be compensated for. Terrestrial reception of hr2-kultur is now possible almost everywhere in Hessen.

Controversy over the 2019/2020 program reform

In July 2019 it became known that the management bodies of the Hessischer Rundfunk had decided to redesign hr2-kultur from April 2020. The cultural wave, which broadcasts cultural word programs in addition to various demanding musical genres , is to become a wave with a predominantly classical music program, which is formatted in such a way that it is “audible”. The concept was presented to the employees of the program at a works meeting and will subsequently be worked out in detail by an internal working group. Word programs would therefore increasingly be offered digitally as podcasts . This would affect, for example, the current program Der Tag and the talk show Doppelkopf , but also radio plays and readings, the radio feature and all of the cultural reporting for Hesse. Some offers might also be postponed to the news program hr-info or be dropped entirely. The reason for this change is the cautious development in the number of listeners and the desire to be used more by younger listeners, but also a change in the editorial team, because a number of employees will retire during this period.

There is considerable protest against the plans from the audience, but also from the cultural scene. The publishers Joachim Unseld and Klaus Schöffling , the author Eva Demski and the Frankfurt head of culture, Ina Hartwig, have spoken out in favor of preserving the word programs on hr2 and emphasized the importance of radio for regional culture. Unseld said: "We mustn't knock down the lighthouses." In a contribution by the taz , an employee of the station was quoted: "The discontent in the editorial office was obvious, the station should be turned into a pure music station." The newspaper spoke of “Scrapping plans” for the cultural program. In particular, there is resistance to the disadvantage of the mostly older listeners of hr2. An online petition against the program reform found around 10,500 supporters within a few weeks. There is also the “hr2-Wort” initiative, which was founded by the literary critic Wolfram Schütte and which invited on October 1, 2019 to a public event in the German National Library .

On August 22, 2019, the hr published an official “fact check” in which the reform intentions were presented in somewhat greater detail for the first time. The “conversion” is “only part of the strategy process 'hr im digital change'.” The goal is to reach various target groups better than before; “A reformed HR2 culture will of course not be 'wordless', but rather centered more on the classical.” Cultural content would not reach enough young listeners. This should be counteracted. At the same time, no additional funds are available for this.


View from the mixer into one of the two hr2 speaker rooms

Under the motto “Stay curious!” (Until 2016: “Your cultural radio for Hesse”), the program designers at hr2 orientate themselves on a broad concept of culture, as is also the case in the classic and new feature sections of quality newspapers. Even after a program reform in September 2005, an essential part of the hr2 offer is its music offering, which ranges from classical to jazz and includes world music and chanson especially in the morning and later in the afternoon. This program reform had become necessary because the pure classical program "hr-Klassik", which had previously been produced by the Hessischer Rundfunk, was discontinued in autumn 2005 for cost reasons. The word portion of hr2, which was expanded at the end of 2003, was reduced again somewhat in autumn 2005. At the same time also located between the genres of music programs were like the new sound in jazz by Ulrich Olshausen not pursued. The word share was further shortened from January 2014.

Fixed program components are still radio plays , radio features , literary criticism, contributions on philosophy and religion and programs for children on weekends. A special feature is the Doppelkopf series, which is broadcast Monday to Friday from 12:05 to 12:55 (repetition: 11:05 to 23:55) , in which a prominent or other interesting interlocutor has a detailed say.

The evening program begins with the music event (until July 2011: cultural event ): the recording of a concert or opera. New music is traditionally maintained at this broadcasting slot on Thursdays . On Saturday evenings, Peter Härtling has presented the quiz program Literature in Cross-Examination several times a year since 1975 with the participation of the audience and the public on site in a public library or in a bookstore. From 2016, Das kleine Literaturquiz took its place.

The station became known nationwide through the Funkkolleg, which was established in 1966 and is continued annually to this day , as well as the audio book best list published since 1997 , which is compiled every month by an expert jury for hr2. In January 2014, however, the hr education program, which had been anchored in hr2-kultur up to that point - the series knowledgeable (from the 1950s to the 1980s “Schulfunk”) and Funkkolleg - was transferred to the weekend and evening programs of hr-iNFO .

In the morning from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. (until July 2011: until 10 a.m. and in the afternoon from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.), the culture breakfast , in which pieces of music mix with culture and literature tips, early criticism and readings, and the culture café the program of hr2. The magazine aims not only to trace current events, but also to shape opinion and style through a varied and differentiated treatment of topics. The classic time follows from 10:05 am to 12 noon, it closes with the culture tips under the heading “Today in Hessen”. Another classic time takes place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

In the afternoon, the Kulturcafé will be broadcast from 4:05 to 6:00 p.m. , which will also bring the current cultural talk. At night, from 0.05 to 6 a.m., the ARD night concert , which was produced every two weeks on Thursday night by hr2 itself, before the night concert was broadcast exclusively by Bayerischer Rundfunk.

The monothematic word broadcast Der Tag , which switched from hr1 to hr2 in the summer of 2004, attracted attention . The program is broadcast Monday to Friday from 6:05 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and illuminates a current topic in detail and from different angles, mostly with funny, ironic or sarcastic clips. For this broadcast, which contains various live phone and studio calls, an above-average research effort is required. On Saturdays until July 2011, the program hr2 was broadcast controversially at this station , in which a current topic could be discussed with a studio guest for one hour with the listeners participating over the phone. In place of controversy since September 2011 the audio book magazine occurs audio .

The traditional request concert on Sunday afternoon was broadcast for the last time after several decades at this broadcasting slot in September 2011. Instead, there is the Concert Hall on weekdays from 20:04, Wednesday is at this point Emperor sounds and then votes Reich , and once a month the ARD Radio Tatort sent. The cabaret lost its traditional broadcasting slot and is now included in the Hesse culture scene on Sundays from 12:05 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. - at the expense of other cultural events that are documented here, in particular from literary life.

During the summer months from July to September, hr2-kultur has been taking over the ARD radio festival in the evening program from the respective institution since 2009 .


hr2-kultur is already available in digital DAB + quality almost everywhere in Hessen. The expansion of DAB + is not yet over; it will be continued in the coming years, so that the technical range will further increase. Hr2-kultur can also be heard on VHF in large parts of Hesse and some neighboring areas. Since March 2007, hr2-kultur has also been broadcast as a live stream on the Internet. The cultural program can also be heard across Europe via DVB-S and anywhere in Germany via DVB-C and IPTV. Even if the analog TV reception in the cable has already been almost completely switched off, some cable network operators also offer the option of VHF cable reception for hr2 culture. Selected contributions are also made available as podcasts on the hr2-kultur website . In addition, a free hr-2 app for Android and iOS-based smartphones and tablets is offered.



Historical broadcasts

Web links

Commons : hr2-culture  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. hr maintains top position in the Hessian radio market. ( Memento from September 24, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Press release from July 22, 2015
  2. YOU FM establishes itself on the radio market. ( Memento from March 5, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), March 5, 2014; accessed on March 5, 2014.
  3. Media analysis: YOU FM and hr-iNFO with record reach. , hr press release of July 15, 2014; accessed on July 15, 2014.
  4. hr is reallocating VHF frequencies . In: February 11, 2013. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
  5. Announcement on the homepage of hr2 ( memento of September 23, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) on February 11, 2013 ( screenshot ): “The Hessischer Rundfunk better adjusts its frequencies to demand. In some Hessian areas there was an undersupply of radio programs from the hr. The reallocation of frequencies will give many Hessians the opportunity for the first time to receive hr-iNFO and YOU FM via VHF. For most of the listeners to hr2-kultur, nothing will change. If reception problems arise, we recommend switching to the frequencies 95.5 or 96.7. If this is unfortunately not possible in a few areas, cable, satellite, Internet and digital radio are recommended as alternatives. If you have any questions, please contact the handset. ”On February 14, 2013, this information was removed from the hr2 homepage without replacement.
  6. ^ Kai Ludwig: VHF partial shutdown at HR 2 ( Memento from June 29, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) . In: Medienmagazin - Radio-News. Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg, Radio Eins. February 12, 2013. Retrieved February 17, 2013.
  7. Tom Sprenger: hr dedicates hr2 frequencies for YOU FM and hr info ( Memento from December 21, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) . In:, February 11, 2013; Retrieved February 11, 2013.
  8. HR-Kulturfunk switched off for parts of Oberzent ( Memento from February 18, 2013 in the Internet Archive ). Infrastructure - conversion to popular program YouFM . In: Darmstädter Echo. February 13, 2013. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
  9. hr-iNFO now throughout Hesse . Press release of the hr. February 14, 2013. Accessed on February 16, 2013.
  10. a b c Grete Götze: Trouble about swapped HR frequencies . In: Frankfurter Rundschau. February 13, 2013. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
  11. Controversial change: Hessischer Rundfunk is now broadcasting You FM on hr2 frequencies . In: Journal Frankfurt. February 12, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2013.
  12. a b Kai Ludwig: Debate on frequency switching at HR ( Memento from April 12, 2013 in the web archive ) . In: Medienmagazin - Radio-News. Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg, Radio Eins. February 13, 2013. Retrieved February 17, 2013.
  13. ^ Kai Ludwig: HR - The silence of the listener . (PDF; 461 kB) In: Radio-Kurier , No. 4/2013, pp. 24–26, 25.
  14. hr exchanges frequencies in Marburg, Korbach, Bad Hersfeld and Alsfeld ( Memento from December 11, 2015 in the Internet Archive ). Press release from Hessischer Rundfunk from November 30, 2015; accessed on December 2, 2015.
  16. Manfred Köhler: Program change: The station HR 2 becomes the classic wave . July 15, 2019, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed July 20, 2019]).
  17. Jochen Hieber: HR2-Kultur: Is the Hessischer Rundfunk giving up its cultural channel? July 16, 2019, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed July 20, 2019]).
  18. Uwe Mantel: Digital First, Younger in View: HR before comprehensive reform. In: DWDL. July 16, 2019, accessed July 20, 2019 .
  19. a b Florian Balke, Eva-Maria Magel, Peter Lückemeier: Hessischer Rundfunk: "Words are as important to many as music" . July 16, 2019, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed July 20, 2019]).
  20. Claus-Jürgen Göpfert: “Doppelkopf mustn't die!” In: Frankfurter Rundschau. July 18, 2019, accessed July 20, 2019 .
  21. Claus-Jürgen Göpfert, Lothar Ruske: hr2 restructuring: "A slap in the face of the literary scene". In: Frankfurter Rundschau. July 27, 2019, accessed July 27, 2019 .
  22. ^ Wilfried Urbe: New radio program: Banalized Hessen . In: The daily newspaper: taz . July 24, 2019, ISSN  0931-9085 ( [accessed July 25, 2019]).
  23. Jochen Hieber: smashing hr2: Hörheimat with open borders . August 22, 2019, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed August 23, 2019]).
  24. Ludger Fittkau: Hessischer Rundfunk: Resistance to the conversion of the culture to the classic wave. In: @mediasres. Deutschlandfunk, August 8, 2019, accessed on August 8, 2019 (German).
  25. For the preservation of HR2 culture! - online petition. In: Open Petition. July 23, 2019, accessed September 28, 2019 .
  26. Invitation of the hr2-Wort initiative to a panel discussion . accessed on December 2, 2019 (pdf).
  27. Jochen Hieber: Debate about hr2 culture: Culture is not just music . October 5, 2019, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed October 5, 2019]).
  28. ^ Claus-Jürgen Göpfert: The reform of HR2 is pushing people to the barricades. In: Frankfurter Rundschau. October 2, 2019, accessed October 5, 2019 .
  29. Fact check "Digital realignment & hr2 culture". Hessischer Rundfunk, August 22, 2019, accessed on August 23, 2019 .
  30. For 30 years there has been “Literature in Cross-Examination” , FAZ.NET, October 11, 2005.
  31. On the 2011 program reform see: From “Libretto” to “Belcanto”. hr2-kultur starts renovated in autumn. , hr press release of September 9, 2011.