The 30th anniversary edition of the Berlin festival Tanz im August, presented by HAU Hebbel am Ufer, ends this coming Sunday, 2 September, after around three very successful weeks. The festival presented more than 220 artists from 18 countries in a total of 30 productions, including 4 world premieres and 16 German premieres, in around 81 performances at 11 venues throughout Berlin. 22.200 tickets were sold, once again a marked increase in comparison to previous years, and more than 6.000 people visited the outdoor performances (excluding La Partida by Cia Vero Cendoya on Sunday evening), the Bibliothek im August and the accompanying audience formats. The festival reached an attendance rate of 95%.
Annemie Vanackere, Artistic and Managing Director of HAU Hebbel am Ufer: „The anniversary edition of Tanz im August has demonstrated the potential of more appropriate funding: the increased presence of larger formats within a programme that showcases the entire spectrum of dance has been received gratefully. Dance in Berlin is not a niche matter! Whether big shows or small avant-garde works – people demonstrate their passion by filling the theatres. This enthusiasm delights me, because I personally share it.“
Virve Sutinen, Artistic Director of Tanz im August: „Tanz im August celebrated its 30th anniversary with a programme that acknowledged the past but allowed the future to unfold. We were able to open new doors for first-time visitors, for example with our outdoor performances, a path that we wish to continue on. There was an urgency in discussing the ethics of our practice and cultures and this self-reflection pro-duces an ethos of tolerance which is beautifully expressed in ManifestX, produced by one of our discussi-on formats Whistle While You Work. It starts with the words ‚I will listen’. And ends with the words ‚I will bring a friend’.“
Along with HAU Hebbel am Ufer as the festival centre, with its three venues HAU1, HAU2, HAU3 and the Bibliothek im August, the Haus der Berliner Festspiele was the most visited venue, with more than 9.500 visitors and a total of five productions over ten evenings. Festival highlights included the spectacular outdoor performance by STREB Extreme Action at Sony Center am Potsdamer Platz, which was attended by around 5.000 spectators. The returning audience formats On the Sofa, Meet the Artist and Meeting of Minds attracted much attention, along with the new discussion series on #MeToo, the Awareness Boost workshop with Sebastian Matthias, and the workshops for children and teenagers with Nick Power and Elizabeth Streb’s Action Heroes. In addition to the workshops, five family friendly productions were on offer, which received an enthusiastic response with around 185 tickets sold for children and young people. The Bibliothek im August, which has been growing steadily since 2016 with book recommendations by the festival’s artists, was a meeting place for visitors, artists and dance professionals for the third year running. It was also the venue for the new format Toast ’n’ Talk, which was an invitation to the approximately 135 accredited journalists and 240 accredited professionals to meet and network over coffee and fresh toast.
The 30th anniversary of Tanz im August was an opportunity to lay the foundation of a hitherto non-existent festival archive with the online publication FÜR IMMER TANZ – 30 Jahre Tanz im August. Compiled by the freelance cultural and dance journalist Claudia Henne, its multimedia contributions are a guide to the history of the festival and the Berlin cultural and dance scene. Leisa Sheilton’s project Scribe was a three-week invitation to visitors to share their personal festival experiences and memories with an author. The resulting archive was presented in the Bibliothek im August.
HAU Hebbel am Ufer (HAU1, HAU2, HAU3), Capitain Petzel, Deutsches Theater Berlin, Haus der Berliner Festspiele, KINDL – Zentrum für zeitgenössische Kunst, Lilli-Henoch-Sportplatz, Sony Center am Potsdamer Platz, Sophiensæle, Volksbühne Berlin