Dance and Sign Language

Katja Erfurth

Research Residency in Cooperation with vigevo

TANZPAKT Dresden Residenz Katja Erfurth
Foto: Jana Mila Lippitz
TANZPAKT Dresden Residenz Katja Erfurth
Foto: Jana Mila Lippitz
TANZPAKT Dresden Residenz Katja Erfurth
Foto: Jana Mila Lippitz
TANZPAKT Dresden Residenz Katja Erfurth
Foto: Jana Mila Lippitz
TANZPAKT Dresden Residenz Katja Erfurth
Foto: Jana Mila Lippitz

The examination of natural body language, which finds its continuation in dance, has accompanied Katja Erfurth as a dancer, choreographer and teacher since the beginning of her artistic work. She had her first contact with sign language in workshops for deaf or hard of hearing people, which were accompanied by interpreters.

In her encounter with this visual language, she was fascinated by the completely non-verbal level of communication, its complexity in the inclusion of hands, arms, facial expressions and body and its multi-dimensionality and grammar in space.

Her research residency aimed at exploring sign language, learning its principles and assimilating it into her movement language of dance. In collaboration with vigevo, Katja Erfurth investigated the origin, development and social change of sign language and examined the extent to which the involuntary gestures of the hearing are related to signs or whether they have developed independently.

Following the residency, the interweaving of dance and sign language, along with sound and music, will be explored and developed in a context of content. In a joint work with the composer Helmut Oehring and the Ensemble AUDITIVVOKAL Dresden, Katja Erfurth will premiere the piece “Kassandra” in coproduction with TANZPAKT Dresden.