Other Spaces - Back to the Future!

Book Presentation and Discussion „Other Spaces – Back to the Future!“ in Cooperation with Theater der Zeit on November 9, 2021 at ://about blank

Theater needs space. Actual space in which human beings can meet each other and temporarily form a community. Space to develop new, experimental aesthetics and for social experiments. It also needs a public space for the encounter of the audience with the performing arts, with itself and between individual members of the audience.

The publication, "Other Spaces – The Independent Performing Arts Venues in Berlin," edited by Anja Quickert, Janina Benduski and Luisa Kaiser, portrays 33 of these other spaces.  It is a first attempt to present the independent spaces for the performing arts in Berlin in all of their breadth and diversity, to explore the origins of these spaces, their respective histories and the ways in which their function has changed in their respective social and topographical environments within the urban landscape.

To celebrate this in a fitting way, we warmly invite you to join us on the occasion of this year's publication by Verlag Theater der Zeit:

Other Spaces - Back to the Future
November 9, 2021, Doors open: 6:30 pm, Start of the event: 7:30 pm
 ://about blank (tent),
Markgrafendamm 24c, 10245 Berlin

Language: This event will take place in German.

The belief in the social efficacy of art (combined with the more diffuse feeling of unlimited possibilities) was the foundation of the still much-vaunted Berlin lifestyle and the identification with the city for the independent arts community, especially since the 1990s. The appropriation of spaces, their interim usage and their reassessment as well as the struggle for these “other spaces” always played a central role in this. This is why we would like to take the book premiere on the ninth of November as an occasion to inform ourselves (from a multitude of perspectives) about the current dangers for the “other spaces” as well as of their future potentials.

Alongside a welcoming address and presentation of the publication by us, the publishers, we look forward to keynote speeches by and discussions with Aurora Kellermann (Proberaumplattform Performing Arts Program Berlin), Lars Werner (Berliner Ringtheater), Mieke Matzke (She She Pop), Muriel Nestler (AG Materielle Infrastruktur) and Tatjana Kaube (KulturraumGmbH), moderated by Eva Behrendt (Theater heute) and Veit Sprenger (Showcase Beat Le Mot). Following this, and before we end the event to enjoy music and drinks, we will open the discussion up to the audience and are looking forward to other perspectives and experiences.

After all, the shaping of public space, its social dynamics and exchange processes intrinsically revolve around the question of who occupies what space, who is visible and who conquers space to maneuver. The independent performing arts community is Berlin’s urban motor and most vital city archive.

We ask you to please register to attend the event by November 8, 2021 at the latest by sending an email to: info [at] performingarts-festival.de

Evening program

19:30: Welcome and presentation of the publication "Other Spaces: The Independent Performing Arts Venues in Berlin" by the hosts and editors Anja Quickert, Luisa Kaiser und Janina Benduski.

20:00: Impulse and discussion round with Aurora Kellermann (Proberaumplattform Performing Arts Program Berlin), Lars Werner (Berliner Ringtheater), Mieke Matzke (She She Pop), Muriel Nestler (AG Materielle Infrastruktur) and Tatjana Kaube (KulturraumGmbH)

22:00: Discussion round with the audience

22:30: Closing with music and drinks

The event will be hosted by Eva Behrendt (Theater heute) and Veit Sprenger (Showcase Beat Le Mot).

Introduction of the guests

Lars Werner

Lars Werner (*1988 in Dresden) lives and works in Berlin. He is the author of several plays and radio plays. His plays were shown at Theater Münster, Deutsches Theater Berlin, Neuköllner Oper, Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen.

In 2017, he initialized the Berlin Ringtheater and is still a member of the artistic director's collective. For his play "Weißer Raum" Lars Werner received the Kleist-Förderpreis in 2018. In 2019, he was awarded the Alfred Döblin Fellowship of Akademie der Künste Berlin. In 2020, he was involved in the founding of the theaterautor:innennetzwerk (part of the ensemble network).

Aurora Kellermann

Aurora Kellermann is a part of the team of the Performing Arts Programm Berlin since 2016. She is responsible for the Proberaumplattform. Since 2020, she is working together with Christin Eckart for the program Performing Safety, which supports artists and venues in coping with the challenges of the pandemic. She has also been the artistic director of TATWERK - Performative Forschung (together with Chris Wohlrab) since 2015 and of the DERIVAT label since 2018.

Performinga Arts Festival

Mieke Matzke

Mieke Matzke is Professor for Experimental Forms of Contemporary Theater at the University of Hildesheim, performance artist and member of the performance collective She She Pop. Her research focuses on the theory and practice of rehearsal, working contexts in theater, spatial concepts, and forms of acting. She She Pop's work has been invited to the Impulse Festival, Theatertreffen, and numerous international guest performances, among others. She She Pop received the George Tabori Prize in 2015 and the Berlin Theater Prize in 2019.

Performinga Arts Festival

Muriel Nestler

Muriel Nestler, grew up in West Berlin. After studying stage design and art at the Hamburg Academy of Art, she worked for two years as an assistant stage designer at the Schauspielhaus Hamburg. Since 2000, freelance stage and costume designer at institutional theaters and in independent productions. 2009 to 2018 also conception and realization of participatory art and education projects and workshops. 2011 foundation of Kostümkollektiv e. V. and management of the common costume fund at Kunstquartier Bethanien and since 2020 with an open textile workshop at Haus der Materialisierung (House of Materialization). Since 2017 activist for better material infrastructure for Berlin's independent performing arts community.

Tatjana Kaube

Tatjana Kaube joined the management team of Kulturraum Berlin GmbH in August 2020. Its mission is to promote art and culture by providing infrastructure and affordable production space, as well as developing utilization concepts or operating locations. The company also coordinates the Bündnis Kultur Räume Berlin, an alliance space for artistic work by the independent scene. Previously, Tatjana Kaube worked at Berlin's Red City Hall, built up the Musicboard Berlin, and was the governing mayor's advisor for culture and sports.


Eva Behrendt

Eva Behrendt, born in Waiblingen in 1973, studied history, German and theater studies in Mainz, Dijon and Berlin. Since 2001, she has been an editor for "Theater heute," as well as a freelance critic for taz, Die Zeit, Merkur, etc., and a guest lecturer at the Institute for Theater Studies at the FU Berlin. She has served on various juries (Berliner Theatertreffen, Theaterpreis Berlin, Hauptstadtkulturfonds, Politik im freien Theater, Impulse, etc.) and is currently a member of the selection committee of the Mülheimer Theatertage.

Veit Sprenger

Veit Sprenger, born 1967, theater maker and author, studied music in Hanover, medicine in Frankfurt a.M. and applied theater studies in Giessen. He is a founding member of the theater group Showcase Beat Le Mot, with which he has been producingtheater pieces, performances, art actions and music videos since 1998. He was a member of the artistic management team for the festival "artgenda" for young art in the Baltic region and of the selection and award juries for the theater festivals "unart", "Impulse" and "Westwind", among others. He has taught at universities in Berlin, Hamburg, Lübeck, Giessen, Zurich, Cologne, Oslo, Beijing, Athens/Ohio, New York, Stuttgart and Bern, among others. In 2005, he published his book "Despots on Stage - The Staging of Power and its Crashes." Since 2018, he has been working on music theater pieces with composer Thies Mynther under the label This Machine Kills.

Publication: "Other Spaces"

The Independent Performing Arts Venues in Berlin

Edited by Anja Quickert, Luisa Kaiser and Janina Benduski
Paperback with approx. 300 pages
With numerous coloured illustrations
Size 230 x 220 mm
ISBN 978-3-95749-360-6
EUR 19,50 EUR / 14,99 (digital)

Reading Sample

Order publication from publisher Theater der Zeit