Barricade Ballet
Dortmund 2016
Barricade Ballet
Barricade Ballet
Barricade Ballet

Video, 05:00 min, 16:9, full HD

Camera: Jan Voges (ground video footage)

regenfrei produktion (aerial footage)


Sander Manse


Artúr van Balen 2016

"When someone says the word "cube" to me, for example, I know what it means. But can the whole use of the word come before my mind, when I understand it in this way?"

Wittgenstein, §139 Philosophical Investigations

"Barricade Ballet" was a choreography and direct action training on the 29th of may 2016 in Dortmund, when citizens trained how to use the inflatable "mirror-cubes" to protest a neo-Nazi march on the 4th of June in their city. The aerial footage captures the moment when people with various political beliefs joined hands in a united effort. This dream is interrupted by flashes of the actual protests one week later, when german police sliced the cubes apart.

The "mirror-cubes" were hand-built in a four week intense program on schools and in the theatre. Alex Kerlin, dramaturg of the Theatre of Dortmund argues, that if one understands the action as a theatre play, many different actors were involved: the theatre, the city council, the schools and students, the police, the artist group, the media and many protesters.

More information about the process can be found here:

Project initiated by Artúr van Balen / Tools for Action in cooperation with the Theatre of Dortmund.

Choreography by Artúr van Balen

Action realized with the Municipal Integration Centre of Dortmund and the network Schools without Racism - Schools with Courage.

Coordination Tools for Action: Artúr van Balen, Tilly Gifford, Katherine Ball, Camille Martenot

Coordination Theatre of Dortmund: Alexander Kerlin, Michael Eickhoff, Anne-Kathrin Schulz, Dirk Baumann Theatre director: Kay Voges

Organization of school workshops: Helena Breidt (Municipal Integration Centre of Dortmund), Sarah Jasinszczak (Theatre of Dortmund)

Tools for Action Team on day of action (04.06.2016): Artúr van Balen, Tilly Gifford, Katherine Ball, Camille Martenot, Dan Glass, Seraphine Meya, Malcolm Kratz, Aidan Whiteley

Cooperation partners: Dortmunder "Arbeitskreis gegen Rechtsextremismus"(coalition against right wing extremism from trade union to protestant churches),

BlockaDO (coalition of unions, parties, youth organizations and Antifa groups united under the goal to prevent neo-Nazi rallies by mass blockades),

"no-TddZ" (autonomous antifascist association) and

schools from the network "Schools without Racism - Schools with Courage" (Gesamtschule Scharnhorst, Albert-Einstein-Realschule, Martin-Luther-King-Gesamtschule, Phönix-Gymnasium, Marie-Reinders-Realschule, Bert-Brecht-Gymnasium, Droste-Hülshoff-Realschule, Westfalen-Kolleg, Robert-Schuman Berufskolleg, Robert-Bosch Berufskolleg, Reinoldi Sekundarschule, Jeanette-Wolff-Schule, Käthe-Kollwitz Gymnasium, Helene-Lange Gymnasium)