Participants R-Z

Foto: Konrad Hirsch

Palucca University of Dance Dresden

A campus for creative learning, where every student, whether in the dancer, teacher or choreographer training programme, is encouraged to find their own voice; a campus, where the individual is offered the chance to learn, grow, take risks and develop as an autonomous thinking, creative artist – this is the philosophy of the Palucca Hochschule für Tanz Dresden. Built upon a curriculum of ballet, contemporary dance and improvisation, the individual lies at the centre and is encouraged to explore all disciplines in a complementary manner. Our students and staff are working to break down the barriers between these disciplines – to not only cross-pollinate, but to question, learn from and find inspiration for new forms of expression through dance.  With a tradition of innovation, we are working to ensure that the Palucca Hochschule continues to grow and flourish as a vibrant, creative and exciting centre for dance education, from yesterday, to today and for tomorrow. > MORE

Foto: Sven Hagolani

Ingo Reulecke

Ingo Reulecke is Professor at HZT Berlin. After an education in contemporary dance, Prof. Ingo Reulecke studied choreography at the Hochschule für Schauspielkunst “Ernst Busch” in Berlin. His choreographies were awarded numerous prizes and invited to many festivals within and outside Germany, among others, the production “EKLIPSE” to the German Dance Platform in 1998 in Munich and to the international choreography competition in Bagnolet, France. He went to New York City in 1998 on a DAAD year-long grant. The piece “diminuendo 2” received the first prize of the VorOrt Festival in Münster in 2006. For the piece “unsere tage wie schatten”, he worked with Lukas Matthaei for the FFT Düsseldorf. In 2008 he took on the artistic directorship of the TMA in the framework of the Kunstfest Weimar. In 2009 he worked with Lukas Matthaei again for “2109” and with Ayat Nafaji für “Lady Tehran”. Since 2006 Ingo Reulecke has been the director of the dance department at the Hochschule für Schauspielkunst ´Ernst Busch´/ Inter-University Centre for Dance Berlin.


David Russo

David N. Russo teaches ballet and contemporary dance at the Ballet Academy of the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich, and has been a member of the collective ‘Sattelit Produktion’ since 2013. After completing his training at the John Cranko School in Stuttgart, he danced as a soloist at the Saarländischen Staatstheater and at the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz under the direction of Philip Taylor. Russo choreographs his own pieces for the Brigit Keil Foundation, Ballet Phillippines and the Ulmer Ballett Ensemble, organises events in Munich’s freelance scene and collaborates with artists such as Jasmine Morand from Prototype Status and Nina Radelfahr.

Vera Sander

Vera Sander

Vera Sander is the head of the Centre for Contemporary Dance (ZZT) and a professor of contemporary dance at the University of Music and Dance Cologne. She teaches contemporary dance, choreography and performance skills, among other subjects. Alongside her academic work she also works as a choreographer. She is a former dancer for Tanzforum Köln, Dansgroep Kristina de Chatel, Itzik Galili and the Sächsischen Staatsoper Dresden, among others. In 1997 Vera Sander founded the contemporary dance ensemble VeraSanderArtConnects. Vera has received several awards for her work, including at the choreographic competition `dialoog cultuur / NL-NRW`and the Dt. Videotanzpreis. She was a part of the research project “Tanztechniken 2010” initiated by Tanzplan Deutschland, and works on the establishment and development of degrees and event formats in the field of dance.

Foto: privat

Alesandra Seutin

International performer, choreographer, teacher Alesandra Seutin was born in Harare, Zimbabwe, grew up in Brussels and now lives in London. She studied dance in different parts of the world including Europe, Africa and the United States. Alesandra has been running Vocab Dance Company (VDC) since 2007. She combines African traditional dance with contemporary dance and Hip Hop to create distinctly Afro-European dance theatre. In addition to the body of work she has build for Alesandra Seutin I Vocab Dance since its inception in 2007, she has created work for Phoenix Dance Theatre, 12º North Dance, State of Emergency, 3rd Edge and a commission for Studio Wayne McGregor.In 2011, Alesandra was selected by Germaine Acogny (‘mother of African contemporary dance’), to be part of the transmission of her technique.

Foto: Diego Agulló

Sheena McGrandles and Diego Agulló

Throughout the Biennale Tanzausbildung 2018, Sheena and Diego conduct a series of formats that conclude in an online video documentary. These formats intend to stimulate promiscuous encounters among participants, open reflections on the topic of politics and dance while researching on how we do politics in our everyday life.

Sheena McGrandles (Northern Irealnd, 1984), is a dancer, choreographer and curator. She trained at the Laban Center London (BA) and completed her MA in Solo Dance Authorship at HZT Berlin. Sheena was Artistic Research Associate at HZT from 2013-2017. She is now Artistic Director at Agora Collective Berlin, running the dance and performance platform MOVE.
Diego Agulló (Madrid 1980) is an independent researcher and a dilettante artist intervening mainly in the field of contemporary dance and performance investigating the affinity between Body and Event.

Diana Shepherd

Diana Shepherd is a movement artist from Illinois, USA. She studied and received her BFA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. There, Diana worked with choreographers Kirstie Simson, Tere O’Conner and performed her senior thesis entitled “Selfs”. Diana has participated twice in the International University Global Theater Experience’s Art Oasis program in Italy and in Austria, where she was an assistant to the program. Diana has been a dance teacher for 8 years and has recently started her own children’s dance classes in Berlin at the K77 Studio. For her Berlin premiere, Diana performed the self-choreographed solo “Bodies (2nd Part)” in the ada Studio performance showcase 10 Times 6. Diana is currently living and working in Berlin, pursuing her choreographic ideas on international bodies and how they interact with the society that exists, and restricts, around them.
During the Biennale 2018, she is Kirstie Simson’s “assisting participant”.

Foto: Harry Jordan

Kirstie Simson

Kirstie Simson (UK) is a professor at the University of Illinois, and continues to teach and perform all over the world. She has been a continuous explosion in the contemporary dance scene, bringing audiences into contact with the vitality of pure creation in moment after moment of virtuoso improvisation. Called “a force of nature” by the New York Times, she is an award-winning dancer and teacher who has “immeasurably enriched and expanded the boundaries of New Dance” according to Time Out Magazine, London. Kirstie is renowned today as an excellent teacher, a captivating performer and a leading light in the field of Dance Improvisation.

Foto: Martin Sonderkamp

Martin Sonderkamp

Martin Sonderkamp, is an artist based in Berlin and Stockholm. His choreographic work expands across disciplinary and aesthetic boundaries between dance, visual art and music and features forms of participatory choreography, mixed media installations and scores for extemporary performances. His latest works include Sonic Extensions (2017) Approximations (2015), Task 14 (2014), Rewired (2013) and Social Movement (2012). He currently works as Professor at Stockholm University of the Arts /Doch – School for Dance and Circus, from 2011-2015 he was employed as Professor at ZZT/HfMT Cologne where he co-lead the MA program Dance Dissemination.

Foto: Norbert Mörchen

Dino Spiri

Dino Spiri studied Jazz & Pop with a focus on Drumming, in the Netherlands. After his studies he moved to Berlin to complete his training as a teacher of The Alexander Technique and he has taught as a certified teacher in this wonderful work since 2013. In addition, he has worked in production management for the the freelance dance and theatre scene since 2012, including engagements with Sasha Waltz & Guests, Martin Nachbar, Shakespeare Company Berlin, and Tanzkongress Hannover.

Foto: Karl Francis

Robert Ssempijja

Robert Ssempijja is a diverse emerging Ugandan contemporary dance artist and dance researcher who is having a career both through formal and informal dance setting experiences, He has been working on three different continents and with over fifty different companies, projects and choreographers. In his art, he uses a combination of Ugandan traditional dance, breakdance and techniques of contemporary dance to get those interesting creations of art. He is trained in techniques from Burkina Faso and has recently completed his diploma in dance at Ecolé des Sables in Senegal. He is also the founder of Dance Revolution East Africa.

Foto: Konrad Hirsch

State Ballet School

The State Ballet School of Berlin is one the leading professional dance training institutions in the world.  Students and teachers from all over Germany as well as from over 25 different countries meet here  with the aim of further perfecting the universal language of dance together, and in doing so gain artistic mastery, technical virtuosity, creativity as dancers and maturity as performers. The young students are able, due to a pedagogical concept which is successfully realised through alternating practical artistic subjects and general education subjects, to obtain both‘A’ Level qualifications as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree. The Bachelors degree “Stage Dance” which is offered in cooperation with the University of Performing Arts “Ernst Buch” Berlin is unique in Germany in it’s level of success: over 90 per cent of our graduates get work as dancers directly after graduation. The Berlin Youth Ballet has been at the State Ballet School of Berlin since March 2017. It acts as a youth ambassador for Berlin both nationally and internationally. > MORE

Foto: Valentin Fanel

Andrea Tallis

Andrea Tallis is a professor for classical dance at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Frankfurt am Main (HfMDK). She was born in Los Angeles and studied many styles of dance with specific early influences from Irina Kosmovska, John Clifford and Melissa Hayden. She continued her education with the Pennsylvania Ballet School and the School of American Ballet in New York. She worked as soloist with Makarova and Company and danced principle roles with the Los Angeles Ballet. Andrea joined Ballet Frankfurt in 1983 under the direction of Egon Madsen and from 1984-1999 under William Forsythe with whom she worked extensively on the development of creations and concepts. Andrea is a teacher of classical ballet technique, composition and improvisation as well as a choreographic assistant, ballet master and reconstructor.

Foto: Martin Rottenkolber

Stephanie Thiersch

Stephanie Thierisch studied dance, liberal arts (MA) and later media art with the performance artist Valie Export at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne. With her company MOUVOIR, which she founded in 2000, she has developed more than 50 theatre pieces, films and installations which have won numerous prizes and been shown nationally and internationally at leading festivals and theatres. Thierisch was a guest professor at the Insititute for Applied Theatre Studies in Gießen as well as at other institutions and taught at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln. Together with the ensemble network Freihandelszone, she has been the artistic director of the festival GLOBALIZE:COLOGNE since 2006. With the Kölner Philharmonie, she co-produced the City Dance in 2016, based on Anna Halprin involving over 600 performers nd 10,000 participating citizens in Cologne’s urban areas.

Foto: Bettina Stöß

Thomas Thorausch

Thomas Thorausch is the deputy head of the German Dance Archive Cologne. After studying dramatics, general and comparative literature and American studies at the Free University Berlin, he worked as a directors assistant and as a dramaturge in Essen, Cologne and Regensburg, as well as for different theatre productions in Nordrhein-Westfalia. Alongside those jobs, he also worked as a research assistant for the German Academy of Dance, the German Dance Archive Cologne and the Historical Archive of the City of Cologne. He has been the deputy head of the German Dance Archive Cologne since 1996.

Foto: Anke Jacob

Sabine Trautwein

Sabine Trautwein studied German literature, art history and political science in Trier and at the Freie Universität Berlin. She freelanced as a research assistant and event organiser in the field “information society/ new technologies” for the Lucent-Alcatel-Stiftung, the Berlin Stiftungsverbundkolleg (1989-2004) and various conferences on smartcard technology (1994-1998). Since 1996 she has been working in the administration and organisation of numerous projects in the area of culture and cultural education; since 1998 as the project director of  ESF-supported projects. Since 2006 Sabine Trautwein has been responsible for the administration of the Inter-University Centre for Dance Berlin, since June 2013 she is the administration manager of the Centre.

Susanne Triebel

Susanne Triebel has been an assistant in the education department for contemporary and classical dance at the ZuKT and the coordinator of the internationally oriented Masters Degree in Contemporary Dance Education (MA CoDE) since 2011. She received her formal dance training at the John Cranko School in Stuttgart and the Rheinischen Musikhochschule in Cologne. In 2009 she graduated from the MA program in Contemporary Dance Education at the University for Music and Performing Arts Frankfurt am Main. Between finishing her diploma and her masters degree, she danced for several years at Städtischen Bühnen Münster, Staatstheater Mainz, Staatstheater Darmstadt and Tanztheater Gießen. She has been teaching for the BA in Dance Management and supervising projects and demonstration lessons for the MA CoDE since 2012. Susanne Triebel is a current spokesperson for the AK|T.

Julian Warner

Julian Warner studied Theatre Studies, American Literature and ethnology at Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich. His first artistic research took place in the are of futuroligy for the “Brand Fiction Project” of Audi AG. He curated workshops, performances and urban district projects for Lothringer13 Kunstareal of the city of Munich as well as lecture series in Favorit Bar. Since October 2015 he works as research associate at the institute of cultural anthropology of the University of Göttingen. His research focusses on Black Diaspora Studies, Racism and Pop Culture. As ‘Fehler Kuti’ he is part of the experimental band 1115 (Alien Transistor). Since 2015 he works together with Hannah Saar and Oliver Zahn in the association for artistic research HAUPTAKTION.

HAUPTAKTION is an association for artistic research formed around the producer Hannah Saar, the cultural anthropologist Julian Warner and the theatre maker Oliver Zahn. HAUPTAKTION studies theatrical practices using ethnography, archive-based-research and embodiment and has an output of texts, theatre, lectures. Theatre works include SITUATION WITH OUTSTRETCHED ARM (on the cultural history of the „Nazi salute“-gesture) and SITUATION WITH DOPPELGÄNGER (on minstrel dance, cultural appropriation and imitation). These pieces are theatrical essays, situated between choreography and historical study. They are being presented internationally. The name HAUPTAKTION is taken from the practice of German-speaking travelling theatres. > MORE

Foto: Tjin Gwan Photography

Heidi Weiss

Heidi Weiss is a teacher at Tanz Akademie balance 1 and at KARI Dance in Kempten. She was a Professor at Palucca Hochschule für Tanz Dresden from 2004-07. She also teaches training for professional dancers and companies such as Sasha Waltz and DV8. She has been a guest artist in residence in the USA, Prague, London, Salzburg and New Delhi. She choreographed and performed with Group Motion from 1992-96. In 1997 she moved to Germany and founded Zen in theBasement Co with Jennifer Mann with whom she also developed the weiss-mann technique*.

Foto: Company Christoph Winkler

Christoph Winkler

Christoph Winkler’s choreographies cover a broad spectrum of formats and range from the personal to the political in theme. Winkler was born in Torgau in the former GDR. He initially trained in weight-lifting, Judo, fight sports and breakdance before studying dance at the Staatlichen Ballettschule Berlin. He went on to study choreography at the University of Performing Arts “Ernst Buch” and later founded Klangkrieg Produktionen, a platform for experimental music. He has been freelancing in Berlin since 1998. In his work, he always manages to find themes that fit perfectly with his art form but, more importantly, also reflect current societal discourse.

Foto: Diethild Meier

Britta Wirthmüller

Britta Wirthmüller is a choreographer and dancer. She holds a position for artistic research and teaching at Hochschulübergreifendes Zentrum Tanz (HZT) Berlin. She studied dance at the Palucca Schule Dresden and holds an MA in “Performance Studies“ from the University of Hamburg. In her work she attends to that which usually remains invisible, e.g. bodies lacking social visibility in the cycle “Antibodies“ with Petra Zanki, the forgotten dances of Jean Weidt (“Physical Encounters”) or the hidden layers of a city’s history in “The Silent Walk“. Current projects are: “Obituary” – an invitation to different generations of dancers to revisit their personal body archive and “The Choreographic Village” – an exploration of choreography as an expanded and participatory practice in rural areas.

© Matthias Heyde

Christina Wüstenhagen

Christina Wüstenhagen (born 1989) works as a freelance dancer in Berlin. She initiates and leads various dance and culture projects in cooperation with theatres, museums and schools. As a result of her combined interest in dance, media and the discovery of new, interactive presentation formats, she creates interdisciplinary artistic works in collaboration with the artist networks SuB Kultur e.V and Dreitausend e.V. She has realised contemporary dance productions and community dance projects as a part of the Berlin dance collective Tangente Company. The creative home of the collective is at TanzTangente in Berlin.

Foto: Yanai Yechiel

Dana Yahalomi

Dana Yahalomi is the sole director since 2011 of Public Movement which has been founded in 2006 by her and Omer Krieger. Public Movement is a performative research body which investigates and stages political actions in public spaces. It studies and creates public choreographies, forms of social order, overt and covert rituals. In 2017 Public Movement performed Rescue in the European Capital of Culture, Aarhus. In 2016 Public Movement presented Debriefing Session II and Choreographies of Power in the Guggenheim Museum, New York. In 2015 the group’s solo exhibition, National Collection, took place at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, and in the same year the book Solution 263: Double Agent was published by Sternberg Press. Public Movement was shortlisted for the Future Generation Art Prize at the Pinchuk Art Center, Kiev, where it performed Cross Section (2014). Together with Baltic Circle Festival and Checkpoint Helsinki, they created the large-scale project Make Arts Policy! in Helsinki (2014). The group performed in the Asian Art Biennial, Taipei; Steirischer Herbst Festival, Graz, and Berlin Biennial; New Museum Triennial, New York; Performa, New York. Public Movement has exhibited at Gothenburg Biennial, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven; Zacheta National Gallery, Warsaw; the Israeli Center for Digital Art, Holon; and the Theater Hebbel am Ufer, Berlin.

Foto: privat

Oliver Zahn

Oliver Zahn is a theatre maker. He created a trilogy of “situations”, the parts of which are touring successfully. For SITUATION WITH OUTSTRETCHED ARM, he is nominated in 2015 as Best Emering Artist in Theater Heute’s critics poll. Other works include “Oh How Lovely is the Evening” (2016), a work about (post-)colonial cultures of remembrance, as well as the Lecture Performance MINSTRELSY with Julian Warner and several publications. 2015 he founded the association for artistic research HAUPTAKTION together with Hannah Saar and Julian Warner.

HAUPTAKTION is an association for artistic research formed around the producer Hannah Saar, the cultural anthropologist Julian Warner and the theatre maker Oliver Zahn. HAUPTAKTION studies theatrical practices using ethnography, archive-based-research and embodiment and has an output of texts, theatre, lectures. Theatre works include SITUATION WITH OUTSTRETCHED ARM (on the cultural history of the „Nazi salute“-gesture) and SITUATION WITH DOPPELGÄNGER (on minstrel dance, cultural appropriation and imitation). These pieces are theatrical essays, situated between choreography and historical study. They are being presented internationally. The name HAUPTAKTION is taken from the practice of German-speaking travelling theatres.