Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch
Lutz Förster takes over as artistic director of the Tanztheater Wuppertal. The company announce a fundamental reorientation / change of direction.
Wuppertal, April 2013 – after long and detailed discussions Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch have decided unanimously to begin the next season with a new management team. Lutz Förster, long-term ensemble member, and professor at the Folkwang University of the Arts in Essen, will take over as artistic director of the Tanztheater Wuppertal, responsible for the company’s work, with immediate effect. At their own request, Dominique Mercy and Robert Sturm have stepped down as artistic directors and as members of the management team. They had agreed to lead the ensemble at short notice following the death of Pina Bausch.
Wuppertal’s mayor Peter Jung said, “Dominique Mercy and Robert Sturm have led the company successfully through a very difficult time, with huge challenges and some exceptional projects. Together with the managing director Dirk Hesse they have paved the way for the future. This time, with the many decisions involved, has cost them a great deal of energy. Dominique Mercy and Robert Sturm have therefore now requested to be relieved of their posts. We greatly appreciate their immense dedication. In the name of the town of Wuppertal, I would like to thank the ensemble for everything it has achieved during this difficult period.”
Ursula Schulz, chair of the advisory board said, “we are delighted to have to secured Lutz Förster, a close colleague of Pina Bausch, as artistic director of the company. This ensures that Pina Bausch’s name and artistic legacy will be maintained to a high standard. We see this as both a goal and a challenge.”
A future for dance in Wuppertal
Along with this change in personnel, the company is also announcing a change of direction, which will be clearly evident during the 2015/16 season, with new productions in the future. The town of Wuppertal and the land of North-Rhine Westphalia have already promised funding for the Tanztheater Wuppertal for 2015 and beyond. Mayor Peter Jung: “the town of Wuppertal has always done everything in its power to support the ensemble and have consistently ring-fenced funding for the Tanztheater Wuppertal. This has never been contentious, although the town has had to make sweeping cuts in all areas, and it will remain so in the future.”
“The company’s change of direction,” says managing director Dirk Hesse, “is the result of an intensive discussion process on the mid- and long-term perspectives for the Tanztheater Wuppertal. Nearly four years after the death of Pina Bausch it is clear to everyone involved that for her works to retain their stage presence, they must be handed down to new generations.” In accordance with Pina Bausch’s wishes and her bequest, Wuppertal is to remain a centre for dance. In the mean time, however, the dance world will be presented with a very special experience of the ensemble and the work of Pina Bausch. In August 2013 the Tanztheater Wuppertal will enter its 40th season and is currently putting together an anniversary programme, which will be announced in June 2013.
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