hip piece
hip piece
hip piece

hip piece

(Germany)

This guest performance is realised in partnership and with the financial support of Goethe-Institut Bulgarien and the Ministry of Culture.

Rhythms that get the hips moving and the asses shaking and trembling: Shake your booty! “hip piece”, the new piece by choreographer duo Verena Billinger and Sebastian Schulz, is dedicated to the body’s core, the centre of desire and lust, the motor of dance. And in doing so, it places itself in the thick of current cultural debates about appropriation and ownership, eroticisation and exoticisation, sexualities and gender, identity politics and universalism. On stage: a group of dancers of varying backgrounds and different dance trainings who have been initiated into the art of swinging their hips by experts in Afro dance, Afro house, so-called oriental dance or belly dance, dancehall, various hip-hop styles (popping, locking, etc.), salsa and twerking. They present their approach to the newly learned movements in ways that are sometimes sober, analytical and vulnerable, sometimes playful and exuberant. In the process, they explore dance as a way of liberating themselves of labels and of becoming more and different than they are at first glance. 

Verena Billinger & Sebastian Schulz studied Applied Theatre Studies, Scenic Arts, Dance, Choreography and Performance in Gießen, Frankfurt and Hildesheim from 2004 to 2012 and have worked together as choreographers ever since. Their works have mainly been created in cooperation with the Forum Freies Theater Düsseldorf and the Künstler*innenhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt am Main. Since 2015 their work has been supported with multi-year funding by the State of North Rhine-Westphalia’s programmes for elite dance funding and conceptual funding, and they have also received multi-year funding from the City of Frankfurt am Main since 2017. From 2021 to 2023 their work also received additional funding under the federal funding programme TANZPAKT RECONNECT.  So far, their productions have been seen in Germany as well as in Austria, Bulgaria, France, Great Britain, Ireland, Latvia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand and the USA. A guest performance in Malaysia sadly had to be canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Verena Billinger & Sebastian Schulz were awarded the State of North Rhine-Westphalia’s Development Prize for Emerging Artists in 2014. In 2015 the international professional journal tanz named them as „Hopes for the Future of Dance”. Their performance “Romantic Afternoon” was a prize-winner at the 2012 Favoriten Festival in Dortmund, and in 2016 their stage  production “Violent Event” was invited to the German Dance Platform. In 2015, 2017 and 2021 they were nominated for the State Capital Düsseldorf’s Artists’ Development Prize, while in 2016 and 2017 various dancers (Jungyun Bae, Frank Koenen, Judith Wilhelm) were nominated for the same award for their performances in Billinger & Schulz’s works. Their dance film untitled (mirror) was awarded a prize at the Greensboro Dance Film Festival in the USA in 2021 and their dance film Picknick won the award for “Best Movement (Choreography)” at the California Music Video & Film Awards in 2022.

Funded by: Fonds Darstellende Künste with support measures with funds of NEUSTART KULTUR – the rescue and future-oriented package for the cultural and media fields financed by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media (BKM), Kunststiftung NRW, Hessian Ministry of Science and the Arts. Supported by: Z – Zentrum für Proben und Forschung Frankfurt, Frankfurt LAB, Schauspiel Frankfurt. The Co-production takes place in the frame of the Alliance of International Production Houses, funded by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, as well as by the Tanzplattform Rhein-Main. The artistic work of Verena Billinger and Sebastian Schulz is multi-annually funded by the city of Frankfurt am Main and the Konzeptionsförderung of the federal state North-Rhine Westphalia.

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