Sasha Waltz walks the line between art forms. Her performances shift between different genres over and over again: dance, opera, theatre, contemporary classical music and the visual arts. In September 2013, the Centre for Art and Media in Karlsruhe (ZKM) hosted an exhibition to celebrate the 20th anniversary of her dance ensemble Sasha Waltz & Guests, which made the visual dimension of her choreographic pieces truly tangible.
From the outset, she has used dance to conquer new spaces. One of the hallmarks of her oeuvre are the “Dialoge” projects, which she implemented, for example, in the Jewish Museum, the Neue Museum Berlin and the MAXXI Rome. Over the years, she has also continually refined her concept of choreographic opera, which she first explored with enormous success in “Dido & Aeneas”. In “Medea” she presents a new interpretation of the ancient myth. Her interest in archaic rituals as well as matriarchy culminated in “Le Sacre du Printemps” (2013).
By invitation of Michel Franck, director of the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées Paris, and Valery Gergiev, general musical director of the St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre, Waltz created a contemporary version of Stravinsky’s scandalous ballet on the occasion of its 100th anniversary. Originally, she performed “Sacre” together with the Mariinsky-Ballet in St. Petersburg and Paris, then with her own dancers in November. The premiere at the Staatsoper Berlin, with Daniel Barenboim conducting, was an uplifting dance affair: Waltz not only denounces female sacrifice; her dance piece is also a wild outcry against war and violence.
14 dancers, 4 soloists, 1 conductor, 8 choir singers, orchestra, 90 min
6 dancers, 2 soloists, 1 conductor, 6 choir singers, 17 musicians, 90 min
18 dancers, 1 soloist, 22 musicians, 1 conductor, 18 choir singers, 70 min
Dido & Aeneas (2005)
13 dancers, 7 soloists, 28 musicians, 1 conductor, 16 choir singers, 100 min
26 dancers, 90 min
8 dancers, 4 solo musicians, 110 min
24 dancers, 1 percussionist, 120 min
18 dancers, 16 musicians, 1 conductor, 120 min
Jagden und Formen – Zustand 2008 (2008)
15 dancers, 16 musicians, 1 conductor, 70 min
7 dancers, 2 musicians, 85 min
13 dancers, 90 min
7 dancers, 70 min
Travelogue I – Twenty to eight (1993)
5 dancers, 60 min
Sasha Waltz studied dance and choreography in Amsterdam and New York. Together with Jochen Sandig, she founded the company Sasha Waltz & Guests in 1993, followed by the Sophiensæle in 1996. From 2000 to 2005, she was a member of the artistic directing team of the Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz in Berlin. Over the following years, she developed a new genre, choreographic opera, and also focused on the “Dialoge” projects – short, intensive encounters between musicians, visual artists, dancers and choreographers in distinct spaces. Her most recent project “Sacre” was created in collaboration with the Mariinsky Theatre St. Petersburg. Among other distinctions, she received the French cultural medal “Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” and in 2011, the Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany. Sasha Waltz has been a member of the Akademie der Künste (Academy of the Arts) in Berlin since 2013.