What we want to know

DANCE ON RESEARCH complements the artistic development of the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE with social and scientific evaluation. The aim is to make the knowledge gained from our experience with the company available for the dance field, as well as for artistic and cultural theory.
To this end, we are working with experts who will be using the individual DANCE ON projects to look at specific issues relating to dance science and other relevant disciplines such as sports science and neuro-cognitive sciences.

Research project 1

“Images of Age in Dance” with Freie Universität Berlin

Together with Prof. Dr. Gabriele Brandstetter and Dr. Nanako Nakajima from the Institute of Theatre Studies at Freie Universität Berlin, as well as with the social scientist Reem Kadhum M.A., DANCE ON conducted an audience survey on the culturally formed image of age in relation to dance. Questionnaires were distributed at the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE’s guest performances in 22 European cities in order to gather and analyse audiences’ expectations and assessments of the age limits of professional dancers. As Reem Kadhum’s report on the following pages points out, the survey reveals a contradiction: although most of the people asked think that dancers’ careers are over at the age of 45 at the latest, they would nonetheless welcome seeing more older dancers on stage.

> Results of the audience survey (in German)

> Summary of results (in English)


Research project 2

“Sports Science Support for Dancers Aged 40+” with GJUUM Ltd.

The GJUUM Ltd. Collective directed by the sports scientists Patrick Rump and Frank Appel specialises in work with professional classical and contemporary dancers. In addition to training advice, injury prevention, rehabilitation and drawing up performance-enhancing programmes, they also offer sports medical advice and psychological counselling. They worked with the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE dancers for a two-year period and during this time took measurements and compiled datasets. The resulting analyses are being compared with data from younger dancers and provide information on how a differentiated requirements profile for dance in age could look.

> Interim report by Patrick Rump


Research project 3

“Artistic Identities of the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE” with Dr. Anna Seidl

The third research project was dedicated to the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE itself. The cultural scientist Dr. Anna Seidl from the University of Amsterdam investigated the aesthetic paradigm shift that takes place in a dance project whose participants are older than 40. In discussions with the dancers and taking current social discourses into account, she mapped out the artistic qualities and structural dynamics that characterise this kind of ensemble.

> Summary of the final report (in English)