News: Pina Bausch 1940 - 2009

Tuesday 30 June 2009

It has been announced that Pina Bausch, the great choreographer and dancer died this morning (30 June). Cancer had been diagnosed only a few days ago – and she performed with her company only last Sunday 14 June. She was 68.

Her company last appeared in London at Sadler’s Wells in February 2008 with a double bill of two of her seminal, early works, Café Müller and Rite of Spring. Read our review

Alistair Spalding, Artistic Director of Sadler’s Wells said: **

_*“I was deeply distressed to hear the news of the death of Pina Bausch today. She was an artist of the kind that the world is only blessed with from time to time. Her repertoire of works has inspired generations of audiences and artists with an impact that is hard to overestimate. She was a dear friend to me and I will miss her greatly. There is now a big hole in my life, and that of countless others. My thoughts at this time are with Ronald her husband, Rolf her son, and her other family, the members of the Tanztheater Wuppertal who must be deeply traumatised by this loss.”* _

More: **‘In recent months, Bausch had been preparing a 3-D film project with Wim Wenders; shooting had been slated to commence in September.’

Wim Wenders tribute poem in the Guardian, 1 Jul 09

Pina Bausch, her life in pictures,” Guardian gallery”:

“Watching a work by Bausch was never less than a dangerous, and profoundly fulfilling, experience. We will all mourn her.” Charlotte Higgins Guardian blog

“For the world of dance, news of Bausch’s premature death is a terrible sadness. It’s also a terrible challenge. Many of her productions have been recorded for video, but that’s not the same as seeing them live. The urgent task for her colleagues and her dancers is to ensure that at least some of them survive for the theatre too.” Judith Mackrell, Guardian, 30 Jun 09

‘Perhaps the archetypal Bausch piece is Nelken, created the year after her son’s birth. The stage is covered with pink carnations, through which a near-naked woman wanders, playing an accordion. It is one of the most beautiful images in the dance canon, and if there are security guards with snarling alsatians patrolling the back of the stage, Bausch never promised that everything in the garden was lovely.’ Luke Jennings, Guardian obituary, 1 Jul 09

‘Her choreography was often obsessive and relentless, but it could also speak potently of the bleakness of the human condition or make us laugh with its wry observations of our common foibles’. Debra Craine, Times, 1 Jul 09

‘Even if you think you have never seen a Pina Bausch work, you are likely to have seen something that has been influenced by the visceral mix of movement, music and speech that she created.’ Sarah Crompton, Telegraph, 1 Jul 09

Artists’ tributes Guardian, 3 Jul 09

“Her contribution to the arts is equal to Beckett or to Francis Bacon. She influenced so much.” Michael Morris of Artangel in Observer, 5 Jul 09

“The style, content and presentation of her works divided audiences sharply, provoking walk-outs and arguments from some but inspiring devotion in others. Wherever and whenever Bausch’s company performed, there were queues for returns.” Gerald Dowler in “Financial Times, 2 Jul 09 (”:

“Bausch devotees craved that scalpel in the psyche, and some of the more recent pieces seemed unnervingly mellow. Yet however punishing or relatively pallid, Bausch’s pieces were always, urgently, about life.” David Jays in “Sunday Times, 5 Jul 09 (”:

Sadler’s Wells site tribute to Pina

\“I’m not interested in how people move, but what moves them\” Pina Bausch

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