The source of origin is the romantic ballet, the emergence of toe dance in the 19th century and its idealisation of the ballerina. The interest in the subject developed from Doris Uhlich´s last piece of work und, in which the gestures, the robustness and fragility of the performing older people´s bodies were the centre point. Contrary to und, SPITZE lays emphasis not on everyday gestures or moving patterns but on the codes of classical stage dance, which have been fixed for centuries.
Susanne Kirnbauer - retired first solo dancer of the Vienna Opera meets Harald Baluch – solo dancer and Doris Uhlich who started to toe dance when she was thirty years old.
The performers leave their habitual means of representation and stage presence behind and find new access to their own dancing biographies.
“She was skinny, appeared to be a shadow of herself; she was like a little cloud dwelling at the shores of a blue lake, a flake of fog stirred by the wind at the waterfall! Her hair was entangled by a tender-pink breeze, a pair of peacock feather wings trembled on her fragile shoulders. Her dress seemed to be made of dragonflies´ canvas, her shoes were like the calyx of a lilly. She appeared and vanished like a character in a dream. Just when you thought she was here, she was already somewhere else.” (a ballet-enthusiast about Marie Taglioni – the first toe dance master – in „La Sylphide“, 1832.)
“Very different people encounter each other, people who wouldn’t have met if it weren´t for the ballet code.” (Doris Uhlich)
“Miss Uhlich, if I had known that I would be working with you, I would have spent the last twenty-two years practicing!” (Susanne Kirnbauer)
“I have never seen anything like this before: Someone beginning with toe dance at the age of thirty without having a parody in mind.” (Harald Baluch)
“I am interested in finding the essence and the “flesh” in ballet but also to seek out the pathos in order to be able to deal with it and stage it in a razor-thin or in a really phat way. This way the ballet dancers and I will make contact both in a human and in a codified way at the same time.” (Doris Uhlich)
“In classical ballet there are various constructions to produce illusion. But what happens if ballet gestures are reduced to the movement of a hand?” (Andrea Salzmann)
Choreography Doris Uhlich
Dramaturgy Andrea Salzmann
With Harald Baluch, Susanne Kirnbauer, Doris Uhlich
Production Christine Sbaschnigg, Nicole Schuchardt
Debut performance 25. 04. 2008 brut / Wien
The images can be printed free of charge when indicating the photo credit.