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Dance Performance Evening:
Aura's Dance: Identities in Motion

Immersive Dance Performance

When

August 29th, 2024

Duration

One Performance at Art Biesenthal Offsite (Mitte, Berlin)

We are a collective of professionally trained ballet dancers and choreographers who have worked extensively for renowned ballet companies and theaters throughout the US, Europe, and Russia. Our aim with this project is to create a performance where dance and an immersive art experience take center stage. The dance performance: "Aura's Dance: Identities in Motion"  will take place at the Art Biesenthal Offsite location in Berlin Mitte on August 29th, 2024

The Performance: "Aura's Dance: Identities in Motion" is a dance piece that premiered at Art Biesenthal's Summer Opening exhibition on July 6th and 7th. The piece was performed by five dancers of the Staatsballett Berlin and was conceptualized in collaboration with the couture bridal label Kaviar Gauche. An extended version of the piece is set to be performed on August 29th at Art Biesenthal Offsite in Berlin, Mitte.

The Location: The performances will take place at Art Biesenthal Offsite an art exhibition space located next to Fotografiska, in Berlin Mitte. The gallery focuses on exhibiting both emerging and established international artists. The venue is comprised of a large indoor gallery and bar as well as a spacious courtyard area where both artwork and performances are shown. This setting creates the perfect backdrop for a diverse collection of artworks, offering visitors an immersive experience that goes beyond the concept of a traditional art gallery.

The Exhibition: The exhibition is curated to accompany the live performance and will showcase works from photographer Tiana Lenz and videographer Theresa Marie Forthaus. Both artists documented the rehearsal process and performance series of this production at Art Biesenthal in early July. The images by Ms. Lenz  and video art installation by Ms. Fothaus aim to highlight dualistic thinking, embrace uncertainty, complexity and unpredictability in living phenomena, as well as encourage a re-examination of public and private experiences, questioning the materiality of art and recognizing the interconnected components of the present. 

The Topic: For many women, their upbringing emphasized the significance of appearing thin and attractive as a means to achieve success - for dancers this rings even more true. "Aura's Dance: Identities in Motion"  puts into question how societal expectations placed on women have shaped female identity and contributed to prevailing notions around femininity. The piece grapples with the paradox of the dancer’s own dance movements being both feminine and rooted in their womanhood, yet also potentially confining. It contemplates the authenticity of identity and asks how a dancer, female, male or non-binary might express themselves if freed from societal constraints and gender binaries. The work concludes with an introspection of unexplored and suppressed aspects of the self.

Images

Choreographer: Annick Schadeck

 

Dancers: Mari Kawanashi, Leroy Mokgatle, Vivian Koohnavard, Lia KemendiSoraya Schulthess 

Sound Design: Jakub Kubica

Costume Design: Kaviar Gauche

Videographer: Theresa Marie Forthaus

Photographer: Tiana Lenz

Artists

Timeline

August 29th, 2024

Performance Day

18:00 Doors Open

  • Doors open for the audience - beverage and dinner options are available, allowing audience members to join straight after work.  Ambient music playing in the background. This allows for the audience both time to settle in and find their places, and serves as an introduction to the space where the performance will take place. 

 

19:30 Performance of "Aura's Dance: Identities in Motion"

  • Section 1

    • The piece begins with five dancers spread out across the Art Biesenthal Offsite location. The dancers will be wearing costumes designed by the Berlin based fashion house Kaviar Gauche, which showcase elements of bridal and couture wear. The use of these costumes will serve as a symbol, demonstrating the juxtaposition of tradition, societal expectations, and the evolving perceptions of gender, which the work aims to illuminate. 

    •  The piece begins with the dancers’ movements being refined and elegant, reflecting rigid ideals around femininity and the expectations placed on women of how to behave, move and act. Bit by bit, the performers move to the center of the courtyard, forming a group and dancing in unison. 

  • Section 2​

    • As the music continues, one of the dancers begins to break apart from the group- her movements becoming more androgynous and erratic. It is clear a process of self-discovery is taking place. 

    • The following text begins to play over the music:​​

    • I was raised to believe that being thin and beautiful will get me places in life, that how I looked would open doors for me. As a dancer, I use my body -it is my instrument, my tool. In some ways, as a dancer, you always objectify yourself. Your body is your commodity. When I was young, I was taught that there are certain rules I should adhere to as a woman -don’t be too loud, fit in a box, act proper, be pure, be innocent. In what ways have those standards defined me, and in what ways have I actively engaged in and perpetrated this hegemonic narrative of femininity? Women do not exist in opposition to men, as a pendent to masculinity- we do not exist to be objectified and sexualized. And yet, when I move as a dancer my movements, are feminine, they are rooted in my identity as a woman. They are in many ways, a depiction of feminine sexuality. But what is this identity really? What if I’m actually something else? How would I look and dance if I hadn’t felt the need to conform? How would I move if I wasn’t raised in this binary structure of masculine and feminine of strong and soft of empowered and disempowered? What parts of myself have I left in the dark? “

       

    • The music fades out and the performers continue, one girl that has broken away dancing alone while the rest continue in the group, dancing in silence.

  • Section 3

    • The music changes, one by one, the group begins to disassemble, each with a different individual movement pattern, exploring alternative ways of dancing, representing the different archetypes of the self. One dancer remains in the middle, adhering to the original choreography, one she feels she is expected to perform.

    • The four dancers who have left the group begin to move in unison and in rhythm, their movements free and unrefined.  After some time, they leave the performance area, dancing in unison, but with elements of their own movement styles tied in. 

    • As the piece ends, a sole dancer is still left in the middle of the courtyard, she looks to the other dancers as though wanting to join, but somehow, she is trapped. Continuing her refined and withheld movements, she resists the urge to join the others. She keeps dancing but her movements become quieter and smaller. The music finishes, and she stops. She looks around, unsure of what to do. Slowly she takes off her gown under which she’s wearing a nude costume. She leaves the dress and walks off. The piece ends

  • The duration of the piece will last one hour from beginning to end. 

 

20:30 Outdoor Party

  • Performance ends, DJ begins to play in the courtyard, allowing for the evening the transition into an outdoor party. 

  • Food and drink will continue to be served. 

22:00 Private Bar Experience

  • At 22:00 the guests will move to the inside bar area, formerly home to King Size, where the private bar experience will continue until 1 am. 

                                                          Socials:

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Art Biesenthal: Followers 30K

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