VIVA Germany

The current logo of VIVA
Launched 1 December 1993
Owned by Viacom International Media Networks Europe
Picture format 576i (16:9 SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Country Germany
Language German
Broadcast area Germany
Sister channel(s) MTV
MTV Brand New
Comedy Central
Nick Jr.

VIVA (formerly: VIVA – das Musikfernsehen) is a free-to-air German-language music television channel, first broadcast on 1 December 1993. A consortium of broadcasters and record companies led by Time Warner, Sony Television, PolyGram Records and EMI Music, but not the German-based Bertelsmann Music Group, saw the investment in VIVA as an antidote to the "vain posturing power of MTV Networks executives", according to Germany's Süddeutsche Zeitung.[1] This channel is a German version of MTV.

Executives at US media giant Time Warner, keen on increasing their market share of its music repertoire and business in Germany, planned the new TV station in 1992. Eventually, they recruited DoRo Productions, producers of music videos for notable acts such as Queen, The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, in the design of the music channel. VIVA became an immediate success with the audience, while ultimately providing German artists with a music channel that could help expose their music to the German audience. After many years of fierce competition for audience share, MTV Networks Europe eventually acquired VIVA on 14 January 2005 after it had outran its own efforts for better ratings. MTV today operates VIVA channels across Europe, in Austria, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Poland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.


Screenshot by VIVA Germany (May 2011)

Initial concept

The concept behind VIVA originated in 1992, when major record labels were frustrated by MTV Europe's decision to program mostly English-language music videos to the Germanophone markets, in what was perceived as its refusal to play major German-speaking artists. Time Warner executives Tom McGrath and Peter Bogner assembled a group of record labels that included its very own Warner Music, EMI Music, Polygram Records and Sony Television along with Frank Otto, Apax Partners, and Austrian producers Rudi Dolezal and Hannes Rossacher of DoRo Productions. In a concept paper of Time Warner, Peter Bogner analyzed MTV's market position as vulnerable, and "while MTV is betting on a diet of pure Anglo-American video clips, VIVA should broadcast at least 40% more German music."[1]

Competing with MTV

With Dieter Gorny eventually as its second managing director on board, VIVA applied for cable carriage licenses in the various German Bundesländer. DoRo Productions designed the original programming format which while clearly a music video channel, sought to differentiate itself from MTV not just by having a German-speaking voice, but by speaking directly to the differences in pop culture between Germany and the anglophone MTV.

Ironically, before launching the channel, the labels offered to fund MTV in a German-speaking version but were rejected by MTV management at the time, as it espoused a "one world, one language" programming philosophy (at least for Europe since the Latin American Channels used Spanish and Portuguese). On 21 March 1995, a second channel, Viva Zwei ("VIVA Two"), was created, initially a channel for classic music videos which later became concentrated on lesser known and more independently produced music. On 7 January 2002, it was renamed VIVA Plus and its concept changed to a channel dedicated purely to pop and mainstream music for a younger generation of viewers. VIVA Plus shut down on 14 January 2007. It became Comedy Central Deutschland the next day.

Annual Comet Awards

Since 1995, VIVA holds an annual pop music award ceremony and awards a price known as the Comet. During the 2003 award ceremonies, VIVA openly expressed an anti-Iraq War view. Later that year, VIVA got bad press after it was discovered that it had given Universal Music an unfair advantage in the placement of their music videos.

MTV's response to VIVA

After MTV introduced a German-language version of itself, the competition between the two stations increased. VIVA was widely perceived as the more mainstream-oriented channel for younger viewers, while MTV Germany was directed at youths and young adults with some more edgier programming. Since the acquisition of VIVA by Viacom, MTV Germany mostly broadcasts reality TV shows. VIVA has become the music channel with chart shows and other similar programmes, which are mostly directed at a mainstream audience. Viacom introduced a programming scheme that allows the station to be run by just 40 people, so many previous employees were made redundant.

MTV parent acquires VIVA

From January 2011, under a major shakeup at MTV Networks Germany, VIVA continues to be part of MTV Networks Germany's free-to-air package and the channel will become the main music and entertainment brand within Germany while complemented by its sister channels MTV Germany and MTV Brand New, which are now pay TV.[2] VIVA Germany received a new look and on-air branding from 1 January 2011.[3] The new look of VIVA joins the four triangles of the new logo into one triangle, putting the angle of VIVA into one heart.

Since 22 March 2011, VIVA broadcasts only in 16:9. Programs produced in 4:3 are cropped to 14:9 and black bars are added left and right. VIVA HD Germany, a simulcast in 1080i high-definition, launched on 16 May 2011. It is available via IPTV from Deutsche Telekom.

Timesharing with Comedy Central

From 8 September 2014, VIVA will air between 6 am and 5 pm. In the time between 5 pm and 6 am the program of Comedy Central Germany will be shown. Until October 2014 there will be a simulcast broadcast of the program of Comedy Central on the shared frequency with Nickelodeon (8.15 pm to 5.45 am) and on the VIVA-frequency (5 pm to 6 am).[4][5]



VJ at VIVA Shows
Collien Fernandes2003–present VIVA Top 100
Jan Köppen2006–present VIVA Top 100
Palina Rojinski2011–present VIVA Top 100
Romina Becks2011–present VIVA Top 100
Daniel Budiman2011–present Game One (MTV show)
Simon Krätschmer2011–present Game One (MTV show)
Nils Bomhoff2011–present Game One (MTV show)
Etienne Gardé2011–present Game One

VJ Year Shows
Mola Adebisi1993–2004Interaktiv; VIVA Top 100; Club R'n’B
Bibiana Ballbè Serra2001–2003Planet VIVA; Chartsurfer; Was geht ab?; Ritmo; Inside
Aleksandra Bechtel1993–1999Was geht ab?; Interaktiv
Nils Bokelberg1993–1998Was geht ab?
Ricky Breitengraser2000Interaktiv Spezial
Sabine Christ1994–1999Housefrau
Rocco Clein †
(Stefan Bickerich)
Phil Daub1994–2001Metalla; Planet VIVA
Daisy Dee
(Daisy Rollocks)
1996–2003Club Rotation Dance Charts; Ritmo
Isabel Dziobek1993–1996Freunde der Nacht als "VIVA TWINS“
Natalie Dziobek1993–1996Freunde der Nacht als "VIVA TWINS“
Mate Galić1994–1997Housefrau; VIVA Trance
Daniel Hartwig1998–1999Interaktiv
Klaas Heufer-Umlauf2004–2009Klaas' Wochenshow; VIVA Live!; Retro Charts; NEU; Interaktiv; VIVA News
Gülcan Kamps2003–2010Interaktiv; 17; VIVA News; NEU; Shibuya; VIVA Live!; VIVA Top 100
Markus Kavka1997Metalla
Johanna Klum2005–2012VIVA Top 20; VIVA Top 100; Retro Charts; VIVA Live!; NEU; 17; Jung, sexy, sucht!
Lukas Koch2001–2002Voll VIVA; Was geht ab?; Chartsurfer; Neu bei VIVA
Sebastian König2006–2009Ringtone Charts; Straßencharts; Mixery Massive Music; NEU; VIVA Top 20; Special Charts; VIVA Live!
Joel Korenzecher1999World of Bits
Steffi Krause1999–2000VIVA Wecker
Ralph Michael Krieger1993–1994Jam; Metalla; Neu bei VIVA
Nadine Krüger1997–1999Film ab; Interaktiv; Jam
Sarah Kuttner2001–2005Interaktiv; Sarah Kuttner – Die Show; Albumcharts
Frank Lämmermann1998–1999Lämmermann Live
Liza Li2007–2008Straßencharts; VIVA Top 20; VIVA Top 100

VJ Year Shows
Milka Loff Fernandes1999–2004Inside; Interaktiv; Was geht ab?; Face it!
Heike Makatsch1993–1997Interaktiv; Heikes Hausbesuche
MC Rene1999–2002Mixery Raw Deluxe
Nova Meierhenrich2000–2001Inside
Markus Meske2002Neuigkeiten
Enie van de Meiklokjes
(Doreen Grochowski)
1996–2000Chartsurfer; Was geht ab?; Neu bei VIVA
Matthias Opdenhövel1993–1997Interaktiv; Neuigkeiten
Nela Panghy-Lee2004–2005Club Rotation Dance Charts; Neu bei VIVA
Minh-Khai Phan-Thi1995–1998Interaktiv; Minh-Khai & Friends
Oliver Pocher1999–2005Alles Pocher; Interaktiv; Trash Top 100; Was geht ab?; Planet VIVA; Chartsurfer
Stefan Raab1993–1998Ma' kuck'n; Vivasion
Janin Reinhardt2001–2005Film ab; Inside; Interaktiv; 17
René le Riche1994–1996Neuigkeiten; Jam
Tyron Ricketts1996–2000World Cup
Charlotte Roche1998–2005Fast Forward
Niels Ruf1998–2001Kamikaze
Falk "Hawkeye" Schacht2001–2004Supreme; Mixery Raw Deluxe
Tobias Schlegl1995–2004Interaktiv; Kewl; Schlegl; Das jüngste Gericht
Jessica Schwarz2000–2003Film ab; Interaktiv
Axel Terporten1993–1997Neuigkeiten
Martin Tietjen2006Ringtone Charts
Shirin Valentine1995–1999VIVA Wecker
Nadine Vasta2009–2011 VASTA; VIVA Live!; VIVA Top 100; NEU
Jessica Wahls2003–2005 17; Interaktiv; Your Stars for X-Mas
Annemarie Warnkross2004–2005Ringtone Charts; Club Rotation Dance Charts


See also


  1. 1 2 Hans-Jürgen Jakobs (10 January 2005). "Der V-Faktor". Süddeutsche Zeitung. Retrieved 26 April 2012.
  2. Briel, Robert (5 October 2010). "MTV turns pay in Germany". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
  3. Archived 25 November 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. "Kastner dampft Viva ein und baut Nickelodeon aus". Retrieved 22 June 2014.
  5. "Viacom schrumpft VIVA bereits im September". Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  6. "Shows & Videos". VIVA. Retrieved 27 December 2013.
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