Pina Bausch, Revolutionary Modern Dance Choreographer, Dies At 68

Pina Bausch, a modern dance choreographer credited with revolutionizing the stage, died yesterday, only five days within being diagnosed with cancer. Bausch was one of the leading women in the field of dance, who transformed German art (which then extended to the rest of the world). She was known for eliciting controversial and emotional reactions so strong that audiences routinely left her concerts. Her dances often portrayed masochism and as a woman, she tested boundaries by utilizing speech, movement, and the pain of her own dancers. In contemporary culture, Pina played the role of La Principessa Lherimia in Federico Fellini’s “And the Ship Sails On,” and also performed in Pedro Almodovar’s film, “Talk to Her.” Out of respect as a former modern dancer, I leave it to the New York Times to sum up Bausch’s influence: “In thinking of the Bausch works that might have been, you imagine aspects of beauty, humor, big-scale visual imagination, as well as darkness, sarcasm and intensity. And the simplest way to feel her loss is to reflect that now there will be no more Bausch pieces for us to argue about. The scene is smaller without her.” [New York Times]