ABeCedarium Bestiarium (working title)
by Antonia Baehr (DE)
creation period: September 2012 - May 2013
Place(es) of creation:
September 11 - 17, 2012 Berlin, Atelier Antonia Baehr
November 19 - 25., 2012 (maybe a bit longer) Residency in Lyon, Subistances
January 7 - 24, 2013 Residency at the CCN Montpellier
Jan./Feb. 2013 CCN de Franche-Comté, Belfort, precise period tbc
February 18 - March 2., 2013 Residency in Lyon, Subistances
April 19 - May 3 2013 final rehearsals Beursschouwbourg, Brussels
premiere: May 3.-6., 2013 Beursschouburg, during the Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Brussles
September 27-29, 2013 @ festival Steirischer Herbst, Graz (AT)
Antonia Baehr, choreographer (Germany)
Lucile Desamory, artist/ Author score (Belgium)
Sylvie Garrot, light design and technical direction (France)
Manuel Coursin, sound design, sound regie (France)
Valérie Castan, dramaturge (France)
“A Bestiary of agencies, kinds of relatings, and scores of time trump the imaginings of even
the most baroque cosmologists. For me, that is what ‘companion species’ signifies.”
Donna Haraway, The Companion Species Manifesto: Dogs, People, and Significant Otherness
Antonia Baehr is beginning with a new series of solos. Baehr’s new field of research
concerns animality, animal drag, and the relation between humans and animals, critiquing
anthropocentrism and the straightness of nature/culture binarism. She will work with
threesomes of affinity, conjoining an animal with a friend or parent and with herself as the
host and solo-interpreter.
"My Dog is My Piano" is the first solo in this series.
One of them is quick, the other slow, one gulps down his food, the other one savours it, one
is sawing, the other one scratches himself, one of them is at the beginning of his life, the
other one started her last quarter, one knows her ancestors of at least six generations, the
other one is unaware until his grandparents, and both have metal ends in their bodies.
Tocki von Arnim and Bettina von Arnim live together in the same house. They do not speak
the same language, they are hardly alike and yet, they have assembled. In "My Dog is My
Piano", Antonia Baehr sketches a subjective acoustic portrait of the affinity between her
mother and her dog: can the house they share be read as the music score of the stories of
canine-human living together? What kind of language emerges from this long duet of
everyday comings and goings, of these choreographies of affinities?
At this point in time, we meet Antonia Baehr right after the first stage of her project,
"ABeCedarium Bestiarium", a performed "ABC of friendship" in animal and temporal drag.
Here she invites artist friends to uncover an affinity that they have with one extinct animal of
their choice. Each animal stands for one letter of the ABC. She commissions each of these
artists to write a short solo performance score, related to the animal that they have selected,
which she can perform on stage alone. In the frame of DOMAINES Antonia Baehr will
perform a selection of two to three of these scores.
Antonia Baehr is a choreographer. What characterizes her is a non-disciplinary work and a
method of collaboration with different people, using a game-structure with switching roles:
each person is alternately director / author / host and performer / guest for the other one.
1994 she co-founded the Berlin-based performance group "ex machinis". She graduated in
Film- and Media Arts at the Hochschule der Künste Berlin with Valie Export (1996) and
obtained a DAAD-grant and a Merit Scholarship for the School of The Art Institute of
Chicago. There she completed her Master in Performance with Lin Hixson of the
performance group Goat Island and began collaborating with William Wheeler. Since 2000
she is based in Berlin. She was co-organizing "Labor Sonor", experimental music and
performance series, at KuLe from 2001 to 2003, and co-hosted the festival "Radioriff" that
took place in December 2003 at Ausland, Berlin. From 2006 until 2008 she was associated
artist in residence at "Les Laboratoires d’Aubervilliers" in France. In 2008 she published her
book "Rire / Laugh / Lachen". Her productions include: "Holding hands" (2000), "Un aprèsmidi"
(2003), "Cat Calendar" together with Antonija Livingstone (2004), "Larry Peacock" coproduced
by Sabine Ercklentz and Andrea Neumann (2005), "Merci" (2006), "Rire" (2008),
"For Faces" (2010) and "My Dog is My Piano" (2012).
Antonia Baehr works a.o. with Lindy Annis, Valérie Castan, Sabine Ercklentz, Antonija
Livingstone, Arantxa Martinez, Andrea Neumann and William Wheeler. She is the producer
of the horse whisperer and dancer Werner Hirsch, the musician and choreographer Henri
Fleur, and the composer Henry Wilt.