top of page

Working through dance, remembering Pina Bausch 10 years after her death

Pina Bausch once said that she was not interested in how people move but in what makes them move, thereby defining her dance as a search for the unknown, for that thing that drives us in a certain direction and produces a particular movement. At the beginning of her creative process, Pina addresses her dancers posing several questions that invite them to look inwards and discover emotions, memories, childhood fears, fantasies, traumas and wounds. Bausch’s choreographic process forces the company to walk through painful paths towards an intimate speech. The whole creation, that is full of ups and downs and goes back and forth in (seeming) illogical ways – there is resistance and insistence - results in an interesting and fertile group of associated ideas. In the words of Benati, one of Tanztheater’s main dancers: “With Pina I'm always at risk of discovering a truth. It’s always something that belongs to me and is mine in an absolute sense. I’m also pretty sure it’s a firsthand experience. The real work depends, ultimately, on each one of us” (Benati, s.d, cit. por Bentivolglio, 1994, p. 26). Pina, herself, speaks of her creations in a language that resembles psychoanalytic concepts: “Sometimes we want to speak about something and we only manage to get close to that something. But we understand also, that that thing is so importante that it seems stupid to point it out. Then what we do is dress that something we are unable to say, in some other it is risky to show it undressed, or just as it is. There is always something underneath, something much more serious behind what the public, in general, can see. It’s like there is always a conflict between what we want to make clear and what we need to hide" (Bausch, 2000, cit. por Lima, 2008, p. 20).

So here's to Pina, thanks to whom I learned psychoanalysis through dance, in the most beautiful and surprising ways.

Bentivoglio, L. (1994). O teatro de Pina Bausch. Lisboa: Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian/Acarte.

Lima, C.A. (2008). Dança Teatro: A falta que baila: A tessitura dos afectos nos espectáculos do Wuppertal Tanztheater. Belo Horizonte: Escola de Belas Artes da UFMG.

Pimenta, P. (2008). Paulo Pimenta diários - Café Müller – Pina Bausch – Teatro São Luiz, Lisboa 03 Maio 2008. Consultado em 3 de Abril de 2013, através de

310 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page