Project to Safeguard and Present the Choreographers Legacy
Pina Bausch is regarded as one of the most influential choreographers of the 20th century and arguably the most prominent dance artist to have come out of Germany. Pina Bausch’s death on 30 June 2009 was a tremendous loss for German dance theatre as it marked the end of an era.
While she was still alive, Pina Bausch made arrangements to preserve her legacy for future generations. The centrepiece of her artistic estate is a collection of material which she herself carefully cultivated during her entire career as a dancer and choreographer. This legacy is nothing less than her entire life’s work. It includes an extensive range of production materials for 46 dance pieces, around 7,500 videos, director’s notes, set designs, technical instructions, costumes, props and scores. The production materials are supplemented by a vast array of secondary source materials, such as programmes, posters of guest performances and press materials with more than 35,000 reviews and photos. Additional personal correspondence, letters, films, speeches, prizes, interviews, work portfolios and manuscripts provide insights into how Bausch worked and developed her pieces. At present, all of these materials are stored in offices, warehouses and storage facilities used by the Tanztheater Wuppertal, as well as at her former flat. These documents, which are now the property of the Pina Bausch Foundation, form the centrepiece of this project which aims to archive, preserve and present the works of Pina Bausch.
The Federal Cultural Foundation, together with the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Dr. Werner Jackstädt-Stiftung, will fund the efforts to safeguard Pina Bausch’s legacy and make it accessible to the public from 2011 to 2013. The project aims to systematically catalogue all the archived materials, preserve and restore those that are threatened by imminent deterioration, produce a video-based commentary by members of the Tanztheater Wuppertal, and create a database. Another important goal of the project is to develop a concept to make the legacy available for public use. The main objective is to open the archive to German and international scholars, dancers, dance enthusiasts and the general public.
The project will also ensure that Pina Bausch’s artistic legacy is preserved in Germany on a permanent basis. As soon as materials are catalogued and archived, a digital version will be made available online. Additional measures to increase public accessibility to Pina Bausch’s artistic legacy are also in planning, which, ideally, would culminate in a public Pina Bausch Study Centre in Wuppertal.
Progress Report 2011
In its first progress report, the Pina Bausch Foundation has reviewed its activities, experiences and results of the past year. Click here to download the 2011 progress report.