White noise

A walkable Dance-Sculpture

Today, delusion dominates our lives. The delusion of simultaneity, the simultaneous participation of all, the supposed abolition of space and time. Paul Virilia, the French media critic, described this state as a “medial ghettoization and an electronic apartheid”. He also described the terrible standstill of a society as being a “coma”.

Barbara Fuchs follows Virilio’s thesis and translates them into dance. She asks: what happens when bodies are perpetually in motion? Does the addition of all possible movements produce a freezing point, just like the sum of all audible frequencies produces a voiceless sound?

Four dancers and the composer/live electronic technician Jörg Ritzenhoff explore chaos, the constant movement of the body and the sounds. Their research gives the ability to experience simultaneity as well as the tension which is included in motionless pauses. They no longer look for content but they are themselves the content of the performance. Their “on top of each other”-selves, their penetration and their isolation design a fugitive choreography. The performance literally roars through the audience.



Photos: © Barbara Fuchs, Wolfgang Weimer

Choreography, Stage, Light: Barbara Fuchs
Live-Electronik: Jörg Ritzenhoff
Choreography, Dance: Erika Winkler, Odile Foehl, Jenifer Hoernemann, Barbara Fuchs

Supported by Kulturamt of the City Cologne, Ministerpräsidenten of Landes NRW, der SK Stiftung Kultur and coproduced by Choreographer-Network BARNES CROSSING.


akt. 2 APRIL 09 criticizes
... In “The white noise“, a piece by Barbara Fuchs, which constitutes a “walkable dance sculpture”, the spectators are placed on chairs in the middle of the stage. The light goes out; a babble of voices soars from Dictaphones which are installed on the walls. Four dancers, who are dressed all in black, are winding through chair-isles, contorting themselves through spectator's feet and narrow stools. The electronic tangle arises to a boom, to a stamping engine and mechanical sound of the sea. Nature or machine? Again and again both blurs throughout the 40 minutes. Meanwhile the electronic-musician Jörg Ritzenhoff, who is live in attendance, drafts stark and sublime sound-worlds. The dancers mutually infuse their bodies, climb on the others in pairs of two, take themselves in possession for a few seconds - you have rarely seen such exciting motion inventions. On a high dancing level they chase through the room, every dancer has several soli. Finally they lead, drag, bully the spectators from their chairs; they marginalize them to the edge of the stage and dispose their bags and jackets. In the end, one of the dancers lies between the reversed chair legs that look like spikes of a sea urchin or like a black reed field. (Dorothea Marcus)

Bonner General Anzeiger – 19th of May 2009
Convincing performances at dance-festival in Bonn
Gudrun Lange, Samir Akika and Barbara Fuchs at “Beueler Brotfabrik”
by Hans-Christoph Zimmermann

The 45-minutes dance night of Barbara Fuchs "The white noise" finished the stand row “Bonner Gastspielreihe” in the theatre at the ballroom in Bonn. 35 spectators are sitting on stools on the white dance-carpet. Four dancers are winding through them and the chair-legs, measuring distances with their spreaded arms and legs and appraising close- and far-relations. While the powerful sound-music of Jörg Ritzenhoff is playing, the four dancers are working their way to the vertical direction.
Intertwined, they grow to laokoonesk figures, roaming through the arms of the immobilized spectators and – by this – overcharging their cognitive abilities. Before them, on the side, behind them - everywhere new impressions are lurking which constantly demand new decisions of perception and adaptive responsiveness. Finally the spectators are conducted to the edge of the stage and now see the occurrence from their accustomed manner. A choreography which captivates by its sensual presence and density.

Barnes Crossing: two premiers at Wachsfabrik
by Nicole Strecker (Dance Journalist)

Metamorphosis of a dance visitor: Observing them in their profiles it is as arms would grow out of the visitor’s chests and bellies. Slowly the head of a woman emerges, and then a body all dressed in black that suddenly disappears like a shadow. At the “walkable dance-sculpture” of Barbara Fuchs the dancers creep like extra territorials “out” of the audience. In reality they just slip out of the gap between arm and torso in a harmless way – but in this cold-glossily light the scene seems a little like a horror trip.
“White noise”, that is how the new production of Barbara Fuchs is called and it is supposed to be played at the Wachsfabrik as performance venue in Rodenkirchen which is a rehearsal room of the choreography-network in Cologne that Fuchs has co-initiated…
It is the concern of Barbara Fuchs to show our primal fear of missing something, this demanding simultaneity of events. She does not serve this feeling with a flat and overflowed dramaturgy but analyses it in an abstract. The composer Ritzenhoff, live in attendance, mixes the sounds of our stressful society in a sublime manner – wind turbines, jabbering TV, highway noise -, whereas the choreography connotes mainly the malaise of the own body: The dancers shake their hands as if they would want to chip off a sticky mass. Then a shiver runs through them as if they would suffer from a continuous goose bumps attack. Particularly impressive are the rangy-angular impulses of Erika Winkler in this successful first ensemble work by Barbara Fuchs who got her aesthetical pendant in the second part of the evening: “Mrs. K.” represented by Suna Göncü. It is a dance theatre solo which fascinates not in its theme (suffering from seniority decay), but in the virtuoso presentation of Göncü. With a very special wheeled walker she gets on the stage and with her crooked back she looks gout-ridden: An enormous armchair which seems to contain her whole life just like the cart of a homeless. There is not a lot left in this life: she clicks through the pictures of her slide projector but there is just white light to see in them – they are the blind spots in the memory. Göncü plays that old woman that convincing that you have to fear about her when she climbs her stepladder. Then suddenly a memory fulgurates through her body and she bounces around as fit as a fiddle. But then: Scare stiff she holds a fuzzy old blanket off her body as it would be a death-blanket. A strong image of this terrifying fear of falling asleep of which there may be no more awakening.