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October 2022 | make a move collective

  • © make a move collective
    © make a move collective

In the current research on moving fractals the make a move collective is looking for new ways to move in urban space and to expand their own movement vocabulary. For this purpose, ball-like objects are used, which enable a soft and at the same time dynamic interaction with each other as well as with the surrounding space and which invite to bounce, roll and play as co-performers.
Since 2016, the make a move collective has been staging choreographies on the threshold of contemporary dance and parkour that encourage the audience to look closely and perceive urban space from a different perspective.

September & October 2022 | Marija Baranauskaitė

  • © Liam Dunning
    © Liam Dunning

The Duck Performance questions the relationship between humans and animals as performers. Marija Baranauskaitė moves away from the pattern of the traditional circus of training animals as performers according to the wishes of humans. Rather, she explores the ways in which ducks in their natural habitat can make up the show.
Trained at the Philippe Gaulier Clown School in Paris, Marija Baranauskaitė worked for many years as an actress, lecturer and artistic director for the Red Noses Clown Doctors. She has participated as a performer and developer in several dance, theater and circus works. Today she is considered one of the first professional contemporary circus artists in Lithuania. She also participated in the creation of the Contemporary Circus Association in Lithuania and teaches at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre.


August 2022 | Lily & Janick

  • © Kolja Huneck
    © Kolja Huneck

Kaleiding will be a contemporary circus performance that explores partnering dance, light installations and partner acrobatics. Lily Schlinker and Janick Kremer are two young artists from Berlin. They have spent the last four years studying contemporary circus in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, at the Codarts School of the Arts, and are now returning to Germany to help establish contemporary circus here and become an active part of the local cultural landscape.
The week at the Circus Dance Festival was one of the first residencies for the Kaleiding project and was therefore filled with experimentation. Without committing themselves too much to content yet, they took the time to examine the mirror as a medium and explored a wide variety of forms that only become a whole when reflected upon.

December 2021 | Meet-Up: Feminist perspectives on circus

  • © Linda Hafeneger
    © Linda Hafeneger

Originating from the desire to deal with discriminatory structures in the circus world, regular exchange meetings of the (local) circus scene have been established since summer 2021. This has given rise to the desire for a more in-depth discussion: A core group of nine people will enter into an intensive discourse and research process for one week in December 2021, relaxing around the following questions: How do we train, how are we trained? How do we learn and how do we teach? Who becomes big on stage or who stays small? How can we shape gender equity in circus? What discriminatory structures exist in production processes, how can we counteract them? Research will be done on already existing resources in the European area. How can we position ourselves as circus educators, artists and circus workers and form a feminist network?

October 2019 | Josef Stiller

  • © Malte Garrecht
    © Malte Garrecht

In an intimate circle, a peformer moves with balanced and falling bamboo sticks. However, who catches the sticks remains an open question throughout the 30-minute piece Responsive Round. Using this simple idea, the performer plays with the audience's natural reactions to manipulate not only the bamboo, but also the audience's focus and attention.

November 2021 | Crispin Bade & Bar Gonen

  • © Jona Harnischmacher
    © Jona Harnischmacher

Acoustic Resonance is an interdisciplinary duet of contemporary dance and rope artistry that explores the complexities of human communication. In this piece, two performers from different disciplines – circus and dance – with different mother tongues and cultural contexts – Israel and Germany – meet and seek mutual understanding through movement. Inspired by the phenomenon of acoustic resonance, in which acoustic waves mix with each other and sound is amplified as a result, we work in this piece with the vibrations of the vertical rope and two bodies that try to find each other and yet keep interfering with each other.

April 2021 | Breno Caetano & Sergi Parés

  • © Filip Jacobson
    © Filip Jacobson

Breno Caetano and Sergi Parés‘ artistic works span the fields of circus, dance and installation. Their choreographies are an expression of a curious practice of exploring bodies and their possibilities. In their new work under their own authorship, the two now meet as a duet. Cornerstone is influenced by cultural, social and historical perspectives on human evolution. Breno Caetano and Sergi Parés use their bodies as instruments and in this way question the basic principles of power as well as our positioning and bias towards it. The means of choice are fine ropes that create connections and dependencies between two bodies and make them visible. Their piece becomes a physical manifesto for a necessity of consideration and trust that must always be remembered and renegotiated. About this work we also created a documentary and had a talk with the two artists.



February 2021 | Sinking Sideways

  • © Kolja Huneck
    © Kolja Huneck

Sinking Sideways, that’s Xenia Bannuscher (DE) and Dries Vanwalle (BE). They work at and with the interface between circus and dance. Dries‘ roots are in circus, Xenia’s roots are in dance. And her discipline dance acro is inspired by both art forms.
Sinking Sideway’s first production called René is based on a single movement that is repeated over and over again. Two bodies in space, moving in the same rhythm, never standing still. It invites the audience to follow their movements, to discover them anew each time, to engage with the details. The artists want to openly share their process and the result, as well as their difficulties and fascination.​

September 2020 | Leïla Maillard & NuR

  • © Alison Johnson
    © Alison Johnson

The first creation of artists Leïla Maillard and NuR, Arachnur shows a fusion of contemporary circus and experimental music with a strong preference for the obscure. “ Arachnur “ is beyond evil or good, definitely cathartic, yet poetic. A sustained hymn to the dark and what lies beyond, directly inspired by the quote of painter Pierre Soulages: „Mon instrument n’était plus le noir, mais cette lumière secrète venue du noir.“ (My instrument was no longer the darkness, but the secret light from the darkness…).
A deep dive into the abyss of the human soul through acoustic borderlines and dark imagery. A macabre ritual that embodies a spiritual crawl to the gallows via despair and the harrowing loop of dark thoughts.

August & September 2020 | Maria Madeira & Laura Schönlau

  • © Maria Madeira
    © Maria Madeira

Maria and Laura both studied at the Fontys Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Tilburg. They are concerned with the border area between circus and dance, as well as the creation of spatial bodies with the means of dance. The focus of this first residency is body-based and visual sensory research to connect physical and visual stories. Based on their shared interest in visual arts, movement and video/photography, the idea for their joint project was born.
We perceive time in a different measurement than before. The present is no longer short, but seems to be more elongated and expansive. We want to explore the present with the sensations of our body and the images of our mind. Perhaps we are in the middle of the fusion of fantasy and reality?

August 2020 | Erin Skye

  • © De Schaapjesfabriek
    © De Schaapjesfabriek

Erin Skye, who graduated from Codarts in Rotterdam in 2019, focuses on the relationships between strangers and the delicate art of talking on the phone with cans and strings in A Circle of Exchange. Conversation, communication and mutual recognition are part of human nature. ASMR (Autonomous sensory meridian response) is a pathway to subconscious relaxation that can create intimacy we rarely experience with anyone outside our closest friends. Erin Skye encapsulates all of these themes in an intimate and abstract show with the working title „A Circle of Exchange“.

August 2020 | Overhead Project

  • © Ingo Solms
    © Ingo Solms

Overhead Project continues its work on the piece Circular Vertigo within the residency. The duo between the dancer Mijin Kim and a 100kg pommel horse suspended from the ceiling is a deepening of a research with a motor-driven aerial object. „Circular Vertigo“ deals with the geometric form of the circle as the archetypal form of attraction and thus establishes, among other things, a historical reference to the management circle in the Cirucus. Resulting from the art of horsemanship in the 18th century, women in particular were able to find a place in the circus, among other things as celebrated female artist stars on horseback, far removed from classical family roles. With the playful occupation of the centre by an abstracted object of power that dominates the circle, Tim Behren reflects a social space in which female creative freedom, equal treatment and self-determination have to be worked out again and again.

August 2020 | Roman Skadra

  • © Andrea Galad
    © Andrea Galad

Since 2020, Slovakian-born Roman Skadra has been working on his play Absurd Hero, which is largely inspired by the philosophy of Albert Camus. The piece is a solo and combines contemporary circus with absurd theatre and is characterised by a state of mind à la Buster Keaton. Presented in a minimalist setting, the focus is on the relationship between the performer and a large, red, heavy walking ball. Reminiscent of the great slapstick artists, the circus is shown here as a potentially joyous yet endless effort. "Absurd Hero" is planned as a full-length piece for audiences of all ages.

April 2020 | Overhead Project

  • © Cox Ahlers
    © Cox Ahlers

As the festival’s own production, the TPZAK Circus and Artistic Centre hosts the ten-member team of the production What is left.
The intertwining of (spatial) geometry and politics is currently at the forefront of the artistic work of the company Overhead Project: What role do architecture and spatial arrangements play in a political context and how do they influence social „power structures“? How can these observations be choreographically and dramaturgically translated into a performative space that dissolves the classical passive arrangement of the spectators, thus creating an open field for interaction between performers and audience?
Since 2008, Overhead Project has been developing pieces on the border between contemporary dance, circus and performance in the independent scene and for guest choreographies at municipal theatres.

October 2019 | Critical Mess

  • © Dorothée Parent
    © Dorothée Parent

The group „Critical Mess“, led by the Berlin-based juggler and performer Stefan Sing, was in Cologne for a two-week working residency for Dodai in autumn 2019, which included a free workshop for exchange with the local scene. This ended in a subsequent city intervention tour with site-specific improvisations in public space. The focus of the workshop was on exploring a metaphorical approach to movement. Movement is communication, is language, is legible. It reaches a higher, more intense level when it is a medium for something else: a feeling, a mood, a thought, an image – a content of consciousness. It is not we who move, but something that moves us. The workshop was led by Stefan Sing and incidentally enabled the Berlin group to get in touch with the local scene. Critical Mess was founded by Stefan Sing in 2016 with the aim of combining dance, theatre and juggling.

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