Barricade Ballet



Dortmund 2016

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

Jan Voges (ground video footage)

regenfrei produktion (aerial footage)


Sander Manse


Artur van Balen 2016

„Barricade Ballet“ was a choreography and direct action training in May 2016 in Dortmund, when citizens trained how to use the inflatable „mirror-cubes“ to protest a neo-Nazi march 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
Artur van Balen / Tools for Action in cooperation with the Theatre of Dortmund.

Choreography by
Artu van Balen

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

Coordination Tools for Action:
Artur 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):
Artur 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)