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 Post subject: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Sun Nov 17, 2002 7:05 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
The shock of the old
A troupe of senior citizens have breathed new life into Pina Bausch’s work. By Clifford Bishop for The Sunday Times.


In the struggle between the generations, dance is a weapon of mass destruction. For every parent who splutters about the orgiastic excesses of the young, there is a teenager reduced to squint-eyed embarrassment by a dad’s attempts at disco or a grandma’s knicker-flashing knees-up. There is something unsettling about seeing the elderly get up to dance — elderly, of course, meaning anybody older than ourselves. It prompts the question: what else are they getting up to? At the same time, it is slightly too stark a reminder that, as we get older, it is not our appetites that wane, only opportunities for satisfying them.
Pina Bausch, who practically invented modern European dance-theatre, understands the waxing and waning of human appetite better than anyone.

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<small>[ 20 January 2004, 03:29 PM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2002 2:03 pm 
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Location: London
<img src="http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/arts/2002/09/12/kontakthof3.jpg" alt="" />

Growing old disgracefully

How a bunch of untrained 60-somethings are breathing new life into a Pina Bausch classic.

Judith Mackrell
Wednesday November 27, 2002
The Guardian

Quote:
Dancers from all over the world make the pilgrimage to the industrial town of Wuppertal in Germany in order to audition for a place in Pina Bausch's company. So it's not surprising that when Bausch advertised in 1998 for a new cast to revive her show Kontakthof, 120 men and women showed up. The difference was that all the applicants were local, most were over 60 and none had ever appeared on the professional stage before.
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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:53 pm 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
This is brilliant.. I love it!! Brava Pina!! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2002 3:44 am 
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Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Review in the Independent.

Quote:
Predictably, Pina Bausch's three performances have long been sold out, even though it's not her Tanztheater Wuppertal company proper, more a Tanztheater Wuppertal 2. She doesn't need massive marketing; she elicits fierce, lifelong loyalty from her fans, so that many spectators this time round are doubtless the same as those in 1982 when she first brought her company to London.

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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2002 2:24 am 
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Location: London
Kontakthof
Barbican, London


Judith Mackrell
Saturday November 30, 2002
The Guardian

Quote:
At first sight, the senior cast currently performing Pina Bausch's Kontakthof could not look more different from the usual, glamorous Wuppertal crowd. All 26 of these 60- to 70-year-olds are amateur performers, and as they sit around the stage (styled with the drab functionalism of a social club) they hold themselves with a stiffness that seems partly the result of nerves, partly the effect of ageing.
But as the piece gets underway it is remarkable how lightly the performers wear their age and how comfortable they start to look. Kontakthof (first created in 1978) is about the pains and passions of adult intimacy, but also about the childhood games that set the template for our grown-up emotions. From the moment we see one man pursuing his partner around the stage, brandishing a dead rodent as she skitters screaming over the chairs, the years drop away. Some of the performers may be over 70 but they can remember their childhoods very clearly.
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Kontakthof
by Debra Craine
The Times

Quote:
WHAT makes a dancer? In Pina Bausch’s universe it’s the experience of human relationships — the suffering and joy — which dignifies a body in movement. And the men and women of Bausch’s Kontakt-hof, seen at the Barbican this week, have plenty of experience. This, a reconstruction of a work first seen in 1978, is a piece for old-age pensioners, and although not every one of Bausch’s 26 performers is over the age of 65 the vast majority are. What they bring to Kontakthof is a lifetime of emotional adventure. What they offer is a majestic chorus line of humanity in all its strength and weakness. They are the stars of this otherwise taxing show.
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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2002 11:57 am 
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There's life in the old legs yet
Pina Bausch's Kontakthof gives performers supposedly past their sell-by date a chance to shine. By Jann Parry for The Observer

Come the Christmas season, dance companies regret their limited age range: festive ballets, like pantos, require children and oldies. There's nothing more embarrassing than grown dancers frolicking in short pants and party frocks or youngsters affecting wrinkles and an arthritic stoop.

Pina Bausch has gone for the real thing in a revision of her 1978 Kontakthof, now performed by the (mainly) over-65s. Though not intended as a Christmas show, its enforced conviviality is timely: these are people brought together to stave off loneliness. They meet in a bleak community centre that serves as a dance hall or cinema. They parade their attractions and inadequacies, trapped in a timeless limbo. The schmaltzy tunes date from the Twenties and Thirties; the outfits are more or less Fifties. What dates this generation, though, is the social convention of dancing in couples or as a unison group, situations ripe with the potential for humiliation.

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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2002 10:28 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Shock, horror, probe! Clement Crisp doesn't enjoy a Tanztheater performance. Why does the FT torture him this way?

Old dogs, no new tricks
By Clement Crisp
FT.com site; Dec 02, 2002


Ars longa, we are told. And never more interminably longa than with Pina Bausch's Kontakthof, which turned up at the end of the week at the Barbican. This is the Theatre of Tedium, the subjugation of an audience by boredom, narcolepsy as (huh!) art.

Twenty years ago, this study in the games people play (though these never rise above the level of Noughts and Crosses) had a certain maniac credibility because Bausch's cast were professionals, adept at moving and at endowing even the most stupefying moments with a sardonic wink.

Now the piece has been revised and lumbered with a cast of senior citizens from Wuppertal, where Bausch has her lair. Beloved parents and grandparents, men and women of mature and fascinating experience they may well be, but - dear heaven - performers they ain't, not even with imagination stretched to the utmost.

They are required to trudge and scuttle over the stage (that trotting motion seen as the elderly hasten for a bus); to indulge in slap and tickle; to talk (mein Gott, der eccents are as thick as vun of your London pea-zoupers). The grey-suited men are, shall we say, willing but theatrically insecure. The women offer powerful evidence that couture and coiffure have passed them by.

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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2002 4:21 am 
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Review in the Sunday Times.

Quote:
When we first heard that Pina Bausch had had the extraordinary idea of re-creating one of her early (1978) epic dance-theatre productions, Kontakthof, for a cast of two dozen senior citizens from her home base in Wuppertal and was bringing the show to London, I hoped that she might shorten the proceedings.
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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2002 9:04 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
"Kontakthof" must go down as a prime contender for the work that has most seriouslt split the critics in 2002.


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 Post subject: Re: Pina Bausch's "Kontakthof" in London
PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2002 1:24 am 
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Kontakthof
By Gavin Roebuck for The Stage

If it is audacious to take the professional stage, fill it with amateurs, present it as a contemporary dance piece and sell fullprice tickets, Kontakthof, by Pina Bausch, is guilty of just that.

Most of the 26 performers are more than 65 years old and bring their emotional experience of life to the work. Though none of the performers had ever appeared on the professional stage before, they all achieved a high standard of coordination and precision, although choreographer Bausch clearly thinks technique is not involved in making a dancer. Bausch's work might best be described as movement rather than dance for there was no virtuosity, interesting use of rhythm, steps or patterning.

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