May 24–Jun 4, 2006


Festival: Dance, Performance, Music

“In Transit” means passing through, transition, change. The international IN TRANSIT festival sees itself, above all, as a focal point for dialogue with dancers and theatre artists from cultures experiencing radical changes and upheavals. This year it features a major programme on Brazil – as well as current productions from Asia and Africa.

From 24 May to 4 June, the House of World Cultures in Berlin is holding the fifth IN TRANSIT festival, which presents twenty new contemporary dance productions and four musical ballrooms. This time the focus is on Brazil, including a number of discussion forums and lecture demonstrations in the KnowledgeLab with Sarat Maharaj.

The festival, directed by Johannes Odenthal, opens with an outstanding dance series CURSIVE: A TRILOGY by the Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, and a concert by Brazilian pop star and cultural minister, Gilberto Gil . This year, IN TRANSIT is part of Copa da Cultura, the cultural programme devoted to Brazil to accompany the FIFA World Cup in 2006. Other modules in this comprehensive presentation of Brazilian art and culture at the House of World Cultures include the series Musica Popular Brasileira (10 June–8 July) and the exhibition Tropicalia – A Revolution in Brazilian Culture (11 June–9 July) from London.

Brazil has one of the liveliest and diversified dance scenes in the world. An incredibly dynamic body awareness that has left its mark on many areas of social life from carnival to sport plays an important part in shaping the young nation’s identity. The works presented at IN TRANSIT 06 focus on the brilliant as well as the vulnerable, wounded body. Lia Rodrigues' dramatic conceptual work thematises the ambivalent pleasure in watching (staged) violence. The group Cena 11 , who have already been to Berlin a number of times, present a new development in their radical investigations into the body. Ismael Ivo , Germany’s most famous artist of Brazilian origin, revives one of his first choreographies (completed in 1980), which marked the beginnings of his career and a new expressive dance language.

Also appearing at IN TRANSIT 06 will be the three productions – currently considered the best – by young African choreographers, who received awards at the renowned 6. Plattform Danse en Creations / Danse l’Afrique danse! (22–30 April) in Paris on 29 April. The jury selecting the winners of the competition, which received applications from 98 groups from 30 different countries, included Aminata Traore, Robyn Orlin, Gordana Vnuk and others. After the competition was over, the prize-winneing companies Andreya Ouamba (Senegal), Orchy Nzaba (Congo Brazzaville) and Panaibra Gabriel (Mozambique) went on an extensive world tour. IN TRANSIT 06 is showing the German première of the programme.

Lin Hwai-min, from Taiwan, is one of the most important choreographers in the world of dance. IN TRANSIT 06 is very pleased that it has succeeded in getting his Cloud Gate Dance Theatre to return to the House of World Cultures (where they first appeared in 1997) to première of CURSIVE: A TRILOGY in Europe. All three parts of Cursive are based on the philosophy of calligraphy, a highly abstract form of art that combines painting and writing and developed over several millennia in China. Dancers write with their bodies, bodies are transformed into dancing letters, the stage becomes the choreographer’s canvas. Concentrated, silent images of poetic beauty and endlessly flowing movements are the striking features of this unique opus magnum, which shows Lin-Hwai-min at the height of his creative powers. All three parts of the trilogy will be shown at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele from 24 to 30 May.

In the Laboratory IN TRANSIT is bringing together the main threads of debates held in recent years on current processes of artistic transformation in Eastern Asia, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East, Black Africa and Latin America. The focus is on questions dealing with the construction of body images, identities and their relationship to conceptions held by the Others.

The Ballroom is the late-night meeting place offers a Brazilian mixture of rap, hip hop, traditional song, dance and instruments, turntables, samba and its equally rhythmic predecessor, maracatú. With Samba de Roda de Nicinha , Daniel Haaksman , Nelson Triunfo + Mamelo Sound System und Jazzanova , Baile Funk , Maracatu + DJ Dolores .

null IN TRANSIT 06 is part of , the cultural programme devoted to Brazil to accompany the FIFA World Cup in 2006.