Young Tanzhaus · Melancholie & Muskeln series


Sebastian Matthias
Studio 6
30.01.2020 – 31.01.2020
Zwei Menschen berühren sich zärtlich mit den Händen

Berlin choreographer Sebastian Matthias, a former tanzhaus nrw Factory Artist, presents his first play for youths, immediately touching on a delicate topping: Sex. In “xoxo” – chatroom language for “hugs and kisses” – he, together with his audience, asks questions aimed at intimacy and desire: How does it feel when someone comes so close, I can feel the breath? Should I stay or should I go? What does it mean to be near somebody? Insecurity, excitement and doubts sometimes conflict with the wish to explore other bodies. Three dancers and one musician, with the audience, create body spaces in which humans can communicate with one another, find common ground and discover touches, individual safe spaces and different forms of intimacy in the process.
Youths today are confronted with a multitude of images and film material showing naked bodies and sexually explicit content, very early on, through social media and other channels. Experiential spaces for body knowledge and physical communication, on the other hand, are few and far between.
Thus, knowledge transfer about one’s own body is handed over to the mass media. The “xoxo” dancers revert to their own body knowledge in order to open a space for the highly sensitive topical complex of intimate interaction: So, the piece circles on topics like power dynamics, insecurity and fear, confidence, pain, consent, boundaries and pleasure. Far from sexualised images on the internet, “xoxo” asks for the meaning in desiring another body and encourages the self-determined exchange of emotions. Following its premiere at Kampnagel in Hamburg in November 2019, it's now guest at tanzhaus nrw.

Duration: 50  min.

Accompanying programme
Fri 31.01. 17:00 Touch Tour*
Fri 31.01. 18:00 with audio description in German

We kindly ask you to write us an email to or call 0211 17 270-56, if you're interested in the touch tour and/or audio description. 

*This offer is for audience members with diverse sensory modalities to make live performance more accessible: Through touching e.g. the scenery or the costumes before the performance they can be experienced multisensory.

Concept, choreography: Sebastian Matthias; Co-choreography, performance: Rachell Bo Clark, Maciek Sado, Enis Turan; Music: Hang Linton; Text: Mila Pavicevic with Rachell Bo Clark, Hang Linton, Sebastian Matthias, Maciek Sado, Enis Turan; Dramaturgy: Mila Pavicevic; Stage, costumes: Johanna Mårtensson; Lighting: Oliver Goldberg; Production management: Mira Moschallski Norman.
A performance by explore dance – Netzwerk Tanz für junges Publikum, a collaboration project of fabrik moves Potsdam, Fokus Tanz / Tanz und Schule e.V. München and K3 | Tanzplan Hamburg. Co-produced by Riksteatern Schweden and in cooperation with tanzhaus nrw as part of Take-off: Junger Tanz, funded by Kulturamt der Landeshauptstadt Düsseldorf as well as Ministerium für Kultur und Wissenschaft des Landes NRW. Furthermore funded by TANZPAKT Stadt-Land-Bund aus Mitteln der Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien, Behörde für Kultur und Medien der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg, Kulturreferat der Landeshauptstadt München und Bayerischenr Landesverband für zeitgenössischen Tanz aus Mitteln des Bayerischen Staatsministeriums für Unterricht und Kultus and Landeshauptstadt Potsdam and Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kultur des Landes Brandenburg.