Susanne Linke

'Ruhr-Ort', © Bettina Stöß
'Ruhr-Ort', © Bettina Stöß


Susanne Linke was educated in dance by Mary Wigman in Berlin before she studied at the Folkwang School in Essen and then became a dancer at the Folkwang Dance Studio; Pina Bausch was its artistic director. Since the mid-1980s, she pursued her international solo career as a dancer and choreographer. At the beginning of the 1990s, she became an artist in residence at the Hebbel Theater in Berlin (now HAU Hebbel am Ufer).
From 1994 to 2000, she was the director of the dance theatre at the Bremen Theatre. In 2000/01, she became a co-founder of the Choreographic Centre Essen and served as its artistic director. From 2001 onwards, Susanne Linke has again been working as an independent choreographer and dancer. Since the 2015/16 season, Susanne Linke has been the artistic director of the dance department of the Trier Theatre.
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Portrait

Susanne Linke has experience in working on the frontiers. Long before there was a gender debate, she was fascinated by the androgynous: how male and female aspects function in every individual body, regardless of whether the body is that of a man or woman – and how they fight with one another and grapple for a balance. Accordingly, ambivalence is a key concept to understand her work. She always seems to see the possibility of a shift towards a better result; an open ending. With a fine irony, she points out in her pieces that nothing is as serious as it seems. In the process, she has perfected her work method over the course of years. She always has one objective: to create transparency, in a very physical sense. She intensely questions each of her movement motifs, turns them over, tests them, throws them away and starts from scratch.

It is a procedure in which each movement is polished and the end of each fine ramification is tracked until one can precisely identify which path an emotion takes within the body. A translucency is sought that allows the audience to recognise how subtle and intelligent in the sense of movement the body is as a medium: active choreographic thinking in movement. Every time, and in a different way every time, Susanne Linke pushes her choreographic subjects into a skilled abstraction that begins in the concrete but then reflects diverse associations back onto reality from the heights of a polished form. It is an art that is as exalted as it is rare.
Norbert Servos

Productions since 2014

Mistral (2014) Co-choreographer: Koffi Kôkô

Ruhr-Ort (1991/2014)

Nemmokna (2016)