Viktor, Tanztheater Wuppertal

Viktor, Tanztheater Wuppertal

Pina Bausch is one of the major figures in contemporary theatre. As the name of her company implies, her works are 'dance-theatre' (Tanz is German for dance) not pure dance. While her pieces look random and improvised, they are not. They need as highly trained performers and are as set as any conventional dance work.

Viktor evolved as a co-production with a Roman theatre and took its inspiration from Roman life. The stage was framed on three sides by earthworks from which a man shovelled earth onto the stage. Some saw this as a reference to the Seven Hills of Rome, some to archaeological 'excavation', some as 'digging' into memory. Other features were two sheep, an auction of junk and another of dogs, and café scenes with lots of pretend eating. In this scene a girl has 'become' a fountain - her mouth was constantly filled with water which she jetted into a bucket in which people then washed their hands. 'I don't talk about meanings,' Bausch once said, 'because the audience is part of the creation'.