Ten Chi Pina Bausch

Mesmerizing and capricious describes these clips of a work choreographed by the late Pina Bausch in 2004, performed by the Wuppertal Tanz Theatre. The piece is called Ten Chi, meaning Heaven and Earth.

This production was part of a project of which Pina Bausch created ten performances, each co-produced with cities from around the world, to represent different nations that participated in the 2012 Olympic Games. This piece was co-produced with the Saitama Prefecture and other Japanese Cultural organizations.

The production here, was inspired by Japanese culture. We see two prominent elements we associate with Japan; A set of large Whale fluke and the constantly falling white blossoms giving a beautiful dreamlike quality.

The piece is made up of a series of contrasting “post-cards” that explore with empathy and humor the sights, sounds, joys and paradoxes of modern Japanese culture. To this cultural backdrop, Bausch presents her observations of the people. Their social rituals, the way they present themselves, the games they play, hypocrisies and fantasies into one capricious, and somewhat provocative and unpredictable whole.

The men are dressed anonymously in black and white while the women wear sumptuous satin gowns and free flowing hair, referencing the company’s style.

Unfortunately these clips are far too short to get a real appreciation for the piece. But they do give us a taste of the high energy, reckless and even outrageous and emotionally charged movement that Pina Bausch is famous for.

The video begins with falling blossoms with a woman dancing, followed by men rushing about, erratic, as their ties flail about them. Women, also join in the mad dash and are carried about. Then the clips change into a steady stream of solo’s, giving us just glimpses of some spectacular dancing.

I particularly enjoy the solos, and would love to find a video that shows some of them in their entirety. There are some great dancers here! One day I would love to see this company perform live.

Watch these clips to tweak your interest! Hope you enjoy them and SHARE!


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