9 April 2018

SOS_Gerhard Bohner_Tanzcompagnie Rubato
A TANZFONDS ERBE project
Premiere: Thursday, 26 April 2018, 8 pm
Akademie der Künste, Pariser Platz

Gerhard Bohner's final choreography, SOS, was created in close collaboration with, and for, Jutta Hell and Dieter Baumann (Tanzcompagnie Rubato). In June 1991 the duet was premiered in the upper foyer of the Hebbel Theatre Berlin, and alongside his three solo works Im (Goldenen) Schnitt I-III, it is considered to rank amongst the most important works produced by the choreographer, who died in Berlin in 1992. The essence of Bohner's later work owes much to his dealings with the heritage of pre-war modernism, searching for a new language that spanned across time. Refusing to make himself at home with any aesthetic habitualness, Bohner remained a pioneer through his life and created with his SOS a masterpiece of precision and reduction that still lent itself to theatrical composition.

At a revival of Bohner's SOS in the late 1990s, the dance critic Irene Sieben wrote 'The pure theory. Every young choreographer should listen carefully to it, in order to learn to distinguish black from white. To learn to fight for the quality of art.'

After more than 70 performances and guest appearances with SOS, Jutta Hell and Dieter Baumann, witnesses of the era, bearers of the choreographic knowledge and dancers of the work in a personal union, will for the first time pass on the duet created for them to a dancers/choreographers couple from the younger generation. Performed with Niannian Zhou and Xuan Shi from China and members of Sasha Waltz & Guests, their reconstruction and new production will be premiered on 26 April in the Blackbox of the Akademie at Pariser Platz. Further performances will take place on 27 and 28 April.

On 27 April, following the second performance, there will be a discussion with the artists, Nele Hertling and Johannes Odenthal in reminiscence of Gerhard Bohner, and to reflect upon the common artistic process of inheriting and bequeathing.

Sponsored by TANZFONDS ERBE – an initiative of the federal cultural foundation in cooperation with the Akademie der Künste, Berlin. Produced by Tanzcompagnie Rubato.

The performances in April 2018 launch a series of individual TANZFONDS ERBE projects at the Akademie der Künste, which culminate in a special programme in autumn 2019 at Hanseatenweg.

Gerhard Bohner, choreographer Born 1936 in Karlsruhe. Attended gymnastic and dance school there from 1954 to 1958 and continued his training at the studio of Mary Wigman in Berlin. First professional jobs from 1958 in Mannheim and Frankfurt am Main. In 1961 Tatjana Gsovsky brought him to the Deutsche Oper, Berlin, initially as a group dancer, and from 1964 as solo performer. Own choreographic works from 1964; 1969 awarded second prize (after Pina Bausch) at the choreography competition of the Cologne Sommertanzakademie. Commissioned by the Akademie der Künste, in 1971 followed one of the most-played ballets of its time, Die Folterungen der Beatrice Cenci, which lead to international renown for the choreographer. From 1972 to 1975 Gerhard Bohner was director of the Darmstadt Dance Theatre, and joint director of the Dance Theatre Bremen with Reinhild Hoffmann from 1978 to 1981. In 1977 Oskar Schlemmer's Das Triadische Ballett, reconstructed by Gerhard Bohner, was premiered at the Akademie der Künste. More than 80 performances followed worldwide up to 1989. Gerhard Bohner created his most important solo pieces as a freelance choreographer with the support of the Akademie der Künste and the Hebbel Theater right up to his death in 1992; these included trilogy Im (Goldenen) Schnitt I-III (1989), Schwarz Weiss Zeigen (1983) and the solo programme Abstrakte Tänze – Bauhaustänze (1986). Angst und Geometrie, his final group piece, was created in 1990 and commissioned by the Hebbel Theater.

The Tanzcompagnie Rubato was founded by Jutta Hell and Dieter Baumann in 1985. To date, they have developed 58 feature-length pieces with various line-ups of artistes and cultures, which have been performed on numerous tours around the world. They collaborated with Gerhard Bohner from 1989 to 1992 and were awarded the promotion prize for performing arts of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin, in 1992. Productions by Rubato have been commissioned, among others, by Akademie der Künste, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, TANZ IM AUGUST, Berlin; steirischer herbst, Graz; Jin Xing Dance Theatre, Shanghai; Guangdong Modern Dance Theatre, Guangzhou; Several Dancers Score, Atlanta and Houston; since 1995 working sojourns on a continual basis and co-productions in China. The Tanzcompagnie Rubato has been supported throughout with funding from the Senate Department for Culture and Europe of Berlin state.

Xuan Shi, born in the province Yunnan in the north of China, studied folk dance, among other things, at Central College, Peking; Niannian Zhou, born in Guangzhou, China, studied dance at the Guangdong Dance School. The dance and choreography couple was a member of the Guangdong Modern Dance Company, and they were invited to Germany in 2000 as guest students of the Folkwang Hochschule Essen. Xuan Shi has worked with Shen Wei Dance Company, among others, and has been a member of the Sasha Waltz & Guests troupe since 2002. Niannian Zhou has worked with, among others, Shen Wei Dance Company, Tanzcompagnie Rubato, Jin Xing Dance Theatre and with Sasha Waltz & Guests since 2009.

Choreography: Gerhard Bohner (1936–1992)
Artistic direction: Tanzcompagnie Rubato
Rehearsal, passing on dance knowledge: Jutta Hell, Dieter Baumann
Dance: Niannian Zhou, Xuan Shi
Speaker: Knuth Irche
Music/sound: Ronald Steckel
Visuals: Ursula Sax
Equipment: Norbert Stück
Texts: Franz Mon, from herzzero
Production management: Inge Zysk
Communication: k3 berlin – Kontor für Kultur und Kommunikation

Event information
SOS_Gerhard Bohner_Tanzcompagnie Rubato
Premiere: Thursday, 26 April, 8 pm
Further performances:
Friday, 27 April and Saturday, 28 April 2018, both 8 pm
On 27 April: public talk following the performance with Nele Hertling, Johannes Odenthal, Dieter Baumann, Niannian Zhou and Xuan Shi
Akademie der Künste, Blackbox, Pariser Platz 4, 10117 Berlin
Tickets €13/7 (Tanzcards accepted)

Ticket sales at the box offices of Akademie der Künste: Pariser Platz 4, 10117 Berlin, daily 10 am–8 pm Hanseatenweg 10, 10557 Berlin, daily 10 am–8 pm and in the webshop at: www.adk.de/tickets and in all well-known ticket agencies

Press contact: k3 berlin – Kontor für Kultur und Kommunikation Bülowstraße 66, 10783 Berlin, bureau@k3berlin.de, +49 (0)30 6956 9524

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