Sharing Rituals (holding it together: the sharings)


The sharing rituals are part of the holding it together series of performances and collaborations. They are open workshops, collaborative sharings and walks, in which we want to engage with everyone who’s interested or curious. Some of these rituals occur within the performance series, while others only appear as a form of sharing. The rituals proceed according to certain rules, which you will experience completely differently depending on the type of sharing.

The sharing rituals are free and open to all—everyone! Themes, dates and times are below.


the latest workout trend! Mit Mathis Kleinschnittger
April 22 2015, 7.30pm-9pm, Studio 3, Gessnerallee

In the 1920s the Tiller Girls’ dynamic, perfectly synchronized style of revue dancing was very successful. We would like to ‘tiller’ with you by adapting the Tiller Girls’ charming basic steps, and using them to bounce, improvise and experiment in formation, laughing and working up a decent sweat! Perfection is completely secondary to us. Just drop by. We would be delighted to see you!

Please bring comfortable sports clothes and shoes (e.g. trainers).

The Snake Dance

with Robert Steijn
April 27 2015, 7.30pm, Studio 3, Gessnerallee

Robert Steijn ist a Performer and Dramaturge, and collaborated with artists such as Frank Poelstra, Maria Hassabi & Mark Tompkins. Although growing up a child of disco and discovering trance-states with house music in the 1980s and 1990s, he only started dancing for audiences later in life. He aims to bring magic back into life and theatre and is convinced that everyone can become their own modern-day shaman, if they immerse themselves in poetry. In his previous texts and dance pieces his animal guide has been a deer—his new animal guide is a snake. Robert believes that dancing in accordance with the essence of an animal transports us into a different mental state. We can experience the world from another perspective. The snake dance returns us to a version of paradise, in which men and women are equal and the snake is no longer a symbol of seduction.
In fact the snake, with its ability to shed its skin, stands for a transformation process that doesn’t end in death. Moreover, snakes seem to generate life force constantly (an energy flow through the whole body) and master language and deception (for example with forked tongue and poison at the ready). Robert has developed a simple ritual to become a snake, using basic movements and imagination. And even if a snake doesn’t appear in the body and spirit of the participants, the dance is nonetheless fun! Everyone can do it!

Please avoid tight clothing and wear clean socks, as we shall move without shoes. The dance lasts between 60 and 90 minutes.

The closeness experiment

April 30 2015, 8pm, Studio 3 Gessnerallee

A group of scientists investigated if it is possible for two people to create close interpersonal relationships in a short time, by each taking turns to ask and answer a particular series of questions. They presented this methodology for creating intimacy in an experimental context in 1997. During the allocated 45-minute period two individuals practise revealing something to build an intense relationship with one another. Does it work? We want to find out. Join us if you are interested in testing this method under our guidance. Surrender yourself to an encounter, to disclosure, to potential intimacy.

Trägheit, das neue Leicht

with Karoline Kähler & Zofia Klyta-Lacombe
May 2 2015, 11am-1pm, Studio 3 Gessnerallee

We want to celebrate the art of falling—tracing the beauty of gravity and abandoning ourselves to the inertia of our bodies. Falling is a quality. Can we just let ourselves go? In the true sense of the word? Together we want to surrender to overbalancing, slumping and falling. We want to feel our body, as it loses balance, as it pulls us to the ground and in falling we lose control, not knowing how the ground will greet us and then on impact feel the limits of our body. Conquer your fears and let yourself go! The ground catches us and lays us down. We practise the fine art of losing control (and the confidence of getting back up again). What would happen if inertia were society’s new imperative? What is the nature of inertia? What happens after falling? Gravity. One is ‘in the moment,’ mind and body are somehow conjoined. Listlessness, the body does not wish to change the situation. Being. Lying. Letting go. Enjoying. Warmth. Slowness. Not needing to know. No business. Inertia as a new quality of life.

Please bring comfortable clothes and trainers.

The Bench

Call for locations

Do you know places in Zurich that cry out for a bench? Spaces to relax, to sit and chat, to watch people, streets and lights, to sunbathe or just for a change of perspective?

Tell us where Zurich needs another bench—it can be busy or secluded, and everything in between!

Send us your suggestions, with brief reasons why, by May 5 2015:

The Bench

May 19 2015, 8pm, Südbühne Gessnerallee

We want to revive Zurich’s public spaces with benches for reunions. Together with people we want to make benches and bring them to places in the city. We need your help! Choosing the locations, making the benches, transporting them to the chosen places and delivering the benches to the public are all essential elements of the ritual.

Volunteer your interest by May 18 2015 via: 

The Mass

KATY HERNAN and LUDOVIC CHAZAUD / Open to all—no special requirements needed. 

February 22 2014 - 11am-3pm stage Theater Gessnerallee

In his book together Sennett writes about what holds our society together. He writes about cooperation, about the importance of handcraft, about the importance of encounters and how through learning movements we can perhaps create new ways of thinking. In search of tools for the act of reconstruction and the act of holding together we tested different group-systems and created a ‘Manual for Active Support’ for February’s Mass-Laboratory at Gessnerallee, which we tried to follow. Workshop Trailer:

Groups are formed. One person is carried and mustn’t touch the floor for 10 minutes. The bearer decides when to ask for assistance and when he/they want to carry alone; at the same time those around can offer support, when they believe it valuable. It is a manual, which can be developed further and which encompasses the trust to bear responsibility and to pass it on. It thus also produces active positioning and collaboration, and also overcomes the fear of touching others. 


22. FEBRUAR 2014 / 11:00 - 15:00
Der Workshop/Research-Laboratoire ist offen für Laien und professionelle Tanzschaffende jeden Alters. Tänzerische Vorkenntnisse sind nicht zwingend, aber eine gute körperliche Kondition und Kenntnis der eigenen Limiten sind wichtig. (Kinder sind Willkommen, wenn ein Elternteil auch am Workshop teilnimmt.) Der Workshop ist Teil einer 3-wöchigen Residenz in der Gessnerallee Zürich.

Die Zürcher Choreografin und Tänzerin Jessica Huber hat die letzten Monate viel Zeit damit verbracht über den Akt (auch den Kraft-Akt) des Zusammenhaltens nachzudenken. Daraus entstanden ist eine Sammlung an Ideen, Bewegungsansätzen und Formaten, alle zum Thema «Holding it together». Eine dieser Ideen nennt Jessica Huber «Holding it together / Akt 3: The mass». Diesen Ansatz bzw. diese Idee möchte die Choreografin mit einer grösseren Gruppe von Menschen testen, recherchieren und damit experimentieren.

Nach einem Warm-up geht es im Workshop in erster Linie darum, verschiedene Systeme des Zusammenhaltens zu testen und die Kraft der Masse und die der Massenbewegung zu erfahren.

Der Workshop ist kostenlos. Bitte in bequemer Kleidung und mit bequemen Schuhen kommen. 

Auf der Suche nach Werkzeugen für den Akt des Wiederaufbauens und des Zusammenhaltens sind der Choreografin einerseits das Buch «Revolution: A Reader» von Lisa Robertson und Matthew Stadler, andererseits die Arbeit und der philosophische Ansatz des Soziologen Richard Sennett sehr entgegengekommen. In seinem neuen Buch schreibt Sennett darüber, was unsere Gesellschaft zusammenhält: Er schreibt über Kooperation, über die Wichtigkeit des Handwerks, über die Bedeutung von Bewegung und wie wir durch das Einüben von Bewegungen vielleicht auch neue Denkstrukturen erschaffen können.