By the mid-1980s, Pina Bausch had gained international recognition for her radical revision of contemporary choreography. Yet her company's first visit to the United States brought not critical acclaim but garnered poor reviews for the dark and despairing content of the works shown.
These complex pieces are emblematic of a difficult period in Bausch’s career, a phase in which her dance theatre demonstrates parallels with Antonin Artaud’s Theatre of Cruelty. Both rely upon spectacle, shock, and the inversion of traditional theatrical frameworks but, significantly, Bausch and Artaud’s respective approaches also emerge from the aftermath of global conflict and destruction.
Presented by Dr Lucy Weir (University of Edinburgh)
Lucy Weir is a specialist in dance and performance. She has published on early modern German dance, classical ballet, postwar performance art and Japanese dance theatre. Her monograph, Pina Bausch's Dance Theatre: Tracing the Evolution of Tanztheater, will be released by Edinburgh University Press in May 2018.
Lucy obtained her PhD in History of Art and Theatre Studies from the University of Glasgow in 2013. She has taught at the University of Edinburgh, the University of Glasgow, and Glasgow School of Art. In 2015, she held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (University of Edinburgh), before taking up her current post as Teaching Fellow in Modern and Contemporary Art.
Lucy maintains a strong interest in dance alongside her academic research. She was recently appointed Visiting Artist at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where she teaches on the Junior Conservatoire Contemporary Dance programme.
The talk is free and open to all. Drinks are served afterwards in the John Higgitt Gallery.