Performers doing The Nelken Line in Limerick, Ireland

Get In Line!

Danielle Georgiou invites you to join her, DGDG, and Kitchen Dog Theater in learning and performing Pina Bausch's The Nelken Line on Saturday, Oct. 21. It's free!

published Friday, October 20, 2017



Dallas — For a couple of months now, I’ve been receiving Facebook messages, been tagged in posts, and asked in person if I’m going to do the Pina project. The Pina project? I must admit that at first I was a bit confused about what people were talking about, and as a huge fan of Bausch’s work (okay, “huge” might be kind of an understatement; I did just recently fly up to New York for 24-hours just to see the company perform The Rite of Spring and Café Müller) I was disappointed in myself for not knowing about this first. But with a little research, and a helpful Dance Magazine article, everything was cleared up.

Earlier this year, the Pina Bausch Foundation launched “The Nelken Line” Project to share Bausch’s famous line-dance and to encourage fans to start their own lines. Just to give a bit of background information, in 1982, Bausch choreographed Nelken—which means “carnations”—during which dancers walk in a single-file line, performing the same four distinct gestures over and over. For Bausch, each of the gestures represented one of the four seasons. But the movement also calls forth the idea of community-building and sharing. The work is most often performed in off-beat ways, during intermissions and in non-traditional spaces. And as Danztheater Wuppertal, Bausch’s company, rarely performs, the Nelkin Line possesses a beautiful reverence when it appears.

Participants have come from Morocco to Chile to Cyprus, performing in locations like soccer stadiums, a French nursery school, and through the campus of Jacob’s Pillow. The Foundation asks that anyone who stages a “Nelken Line,” share their videos with them—you can view all the videos on the Pina Bausch Foundation’s Vimeo channel—and so many people have participated that the project was has been extended to May 31, 2018.

Which means that there is time for a Dallas’ “Nelken Line” to happen! And with the help of Tim Johnson of Kitchen Dog Theater, I’m making my Pina dreams come true and staging one this weekend!

On Saturday, Oct. 21 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., at the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library in downtown Dallas, I, along with some members of the Danielle Georgiou Dance Group and friends from the dance and theatre community, will be leading small group workshops to teach the movement score of the “Nelken Line.” Interested participants may drop in at any time to learn the choreography, but we are encouraging people to spend the day with us, meeting other members of the community, and bonding over a shared activity.

That is one of the main elements that I have always gravitated toward in Bausch’s work—how fundamentally human it is. Her work explores and examines the human condition, and offers situations that are universal in their content but abstract and absurd in their presentation. There is always a sense of humor to her work, and her performers move with such ease that it looks pedestrian and second-nature. As a choreographer, I find her methodology inspiring and have crafted my own mission as an artist around her concepts, redefining them for my own artistic practice. I believe that dance can happen anywhere, at any time, and by anyone, and that dance has the power to bring people together from all walks of life for a common purpose—to share space and ideas. No matter your age, language, or ability, you can and should dance. Technique can be your foundation, but it is not your identity.

To join our line in Dallas, drop into the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library in downtown Dallas on Saturday, Oct. 21 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. The complete schedule for the day is below.

  • 11 a.m.-2 p.m.: dancers from DGDG will be leading small group workshops to teach the choreography.
  • 1-1:45 p.m.: A group lunch time, with snacks provided by DGDG (all are welcome to bring food to share).
  • 2-4 p.m.: We will film the choreography inside and outside of the Library. This video documentation will be provided to the Pina Bausch Foundation.

No dance experience is required. All are welcome. Interested participants are asked to bring clothing options for the filming that have no logos or patterns on them, but can be any color. This workshop is in cooperation with Kitchen Dog Theater, and supported by the Dallas Public Library.

And, this is my birthday week, so come and celebrate with me!


» Danielle Georgiou is a dance educator, critic and writer. She is the Founder and Artistic Director of DGDG (Danielle Georgiou Dance Group) and is a working dancer and performance artist. Her column Sixth Position appears on the third Friday of the month on








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Get In Line!
Danielle Georgiou invites you to join her, DGDG, and Kitchen Dog Theater in learning and performing Pina Bausch's The Nelken Line on Saturday, Oct. 21. It's free!
by Danielle Georgiou

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