Bodies of Crisis: The German Wende remembered
A practice-as-research project developed by Maria Hetzer

Video: Bodies of Crisis, full length documentation of live performance (40 minutes)
Production: Live Performance on 19 September, 2012
Production: Millburn House | University of Warwick

This video documents the live performance of the performance model in full length on September 19, 2012 at Millburn Studios, University of Warwick. The performance event consisted of three elements: object exhibition, live performance and successive audience feedback round.

BODIES OF CRISIS – Performance script

Sequence 1: Is this my story? On embodying history in autobiography and the strains of collective codes
  • language of memory I: 20th c. German political gestures (maria)
  • language of memory II: ballett of the rich in Cyprus (jess)
  • language of memory III: dislocating the body (maiada)
  • language of memory IV: the male narrator (david)
Sequence 2: Welcome, stereotypes! The haunted stage of East German unification memory
  • the crisis of socialist narrative: disappearing (the map / david)
  • the crisis of socialist consumption: excess (joghurt & coffee / jess)
  • the crisis of the socialist body: worries (sweets & pills / maria)
  • the crisis of socialist taste: this is not an apple! (apples / maiada)
Sequence 3: Then is now (hygiene). Docufiction and the usefulness of comparison
  • Showing of re-enacted pieces of interview material on everyday personal hygiene on a screen. Performers wash in space, thereby physically connecting past and present.
Sequence 4: Utopia is a small island in the Baltic sea (Fossils) Documenting self-reinvention and efforts for a better life and their failure
  • Taking up gestures from the first sequence, we perform the months of the Wende in which calls and concepts of socio-political imagnation were most pronounced (Oct - Nov 1989). These were the months before the voices for reunification and capitalist consumerism were taking over. In the background, on the screen, historical images visualise a countdown to unification. The movement ceases with the appearance of a clock that symbolises West German news reports and life.