Bausch, Pina

Bausch, Pina pē´nə boush [key], 1940–2009, German dancer and choreographer. After training with Kurt Jooss , she studied in New York with Antony Tudor , Paul Taylor , José Limón , and Paul Sanasardo. She began choreographing in 1968 and in 1973 assumed the post of ballet master of the Wuppertal State Opera Dance Theatre, which became her base. Bausch became known for a rather bleak vision of humanity and neoexpressionist approach, and was also noted for dramatic, surreal stagings, e.g., in Carnations (1983) the stage was covered with thousands of silk carnations that were trampled during the performance, and in Arien (1985) the dance area was filled with ankle-deep water. Her experimental concert ballets included productions of Kurt Weill 's Seven Deadly Sins. She also choreographed Stravinsky 's Sacre du printemps (1975) and Bandoneon (1980). Bausch's later works, which tended to be mellower in tone and more romantic than her earlier dances, include Two Cigarettes in the Dark (1994), The Window Washer (1997), and Danzón (1999). After 1986 Bausch also created full-length pieces inspired and usually commissioned by various cities; these include Palermo, Palermo (1991), Hong Kong in Der Fensterputzer (1997), Lisbon and São Paulo in Masurca Fogo (2001), and İstanbul in Nefés (2003). In the years since her death, the Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch has continued to perform her style of tanztheater [dance theater] in Europe and abroad.

See studies by N. Servos (1979, tr. 1984), C. Fernandes (2001), D. Mulrooney (2002), and R. Climenhaga (2008); W. Wenders, dir., Pina (documentary film, 2011).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Dance: Biographies