Bauhaus Ballet

The German art school is not usually remembered for ballet, but here's the proof!

Halloween costume party?

Not quite. These are snapshots from Oskar Schlemmer's Triadic Ballet, which toured from 1921 to 1929, helping to spread the ethos of the Bauhaus.

Up and running until 1933, the Bauhaus was a German art school founded by the architect Walter Gropius. The school wanted to reunite creativity with manufacturing, focusing on artistry and crafts across all mediums of design.

“Oskar Schlemmer turned to choreography because of his concern for the relationships of figures in space."
Jack Anderson

Because the Bauhaus wanted to bring art and craft into the modern industrial era, a world full of factories and machines, people don't normally associate the movement with dance - but here you have it!

And why not? As Jack Anderson wrote, in his review of a 1985 New York production, Schlemmer “turned to choreography because of his concern for the relationships of figures in space." A bit like an architect.

PLUS, those sculptural, geometric costumes are so bulky. They would have been difficult to move in, resulting in a jerky, almost robotic dance. Maybe Schlemmer was concerned about the changing relationships between humans and machines. What do you think?

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