Taanteatro Company

Taanteatro is a dance-theater company established in 1991 and headquartered in São Paulo, Brazil. Lead by its founder, the brazilian choreographer Maura Baiocchi, and the german director Wolfgang Pannek, the company is dedicated to research and creation in the performing arts.

Along its trajectory, Taanteatro created more than sixty choreographies and plays based on the life and work of artists and poets like Frida Kahlo, Florbela Espanca, Lewis Carrol, Antonin Artaud, Lautréamont, Fernando Pessoa, Robert Walser, George Tabori, Hölderlin, Beckett, Shakespeare, and Friedrich Nietzsche, amongst others.

The company’s name – taanteatro – designates a specific practical and theoretic dynamic, the choreographic theater of tensions, created by Maura Baiocchi.

Taanteatro’s performative research is documented through an editorial project that includes the publication of the following books: Taanteatro: choreographic theater of tensions (2007); Taanteatro: rite of passage (2011); Taanteatro: MAE Body Energy Mandala (2013); Taanteatro: [Des]Construction and Schizopresence (2016); Taanteatro: Forces & Forms (2018). books.

Taanteatro Companhia also developes international artistic exchange projects among which the Butoh and Research Theater Festival 1995, Artaud 100 Years, The Conquest, Matola Brazil Project and the Hans Thies Lehmann Brasil Tour 2010.

The press has described Taanteatro as an “important group of Brazilian artists who investigate the language of performing arts” and pointed out its following qualities: “daring and innovative”, “unique manner of developing texts and of studying physical action”, “extreme care in creation and staging”, “visual quality”, “gestural refinement”, “rigor and magnetism of the physical manifestation”, “great work of performers” and “celebration of freedom and creativity”.

Taanteatro performed in Argentina, Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Japan, Mozambique, Russia, and the US.

2018 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo
2016 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo
2014 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo
2013 National Foundation of Dance Award Klauss Viana
2013 Dance Critics Award APCA São Paulo
2013 Denilto Gomes Dance Award
2011 Best Dance Performance 2011 – Guia da Folha de S. Paulo
2011 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo – Taanteatro 20 Years
2009 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo – DAN
2009 National Foundation of Arts Award Klauss Vianna – DAN
2008 National Foundation of Arts Award Klauss Vianna – !Zarathustra!
2006/07 Municipal Program for Dance in São Paulo
2006 National Foundation of Arts Award Klauss Vianna
2004 Contemporary Dance Award São Paulo
2004 São Paulo Critics Award Best Play “Os Sertões” by Teatro Oficina
1997 Theater Festival Sorocaba Best Costumes – Variação para Bola, Shiva e Madalena
1997 Theater Festival Sorocaba – Best Lighting – Variação para Bola, Shiva e Madalena
1991/92 Vitae Foundation Fellowship for Art – Taanteatro: A Research for the Transformation of Dance
1991 Crowne Plaza São Paulo Performance Award – Best Play – Absolutas
1998 Critics Award of the Federal District – Best Play – When the Butterflies get lost
1987 Hinoemata Peformance Festival – Best Foreign Performance – Between the Sword and the Wall

Trajectory (main events)

In 1991 Maura Baiocchi and members of her research group inaugurate Taanteatro Companhia in São Paulo/Brazil. Inaugural works: Frida Kahlo: A Stonewoman gives Birth to the Night (solo) staged for the first time at TUCA Theater in São Paulo and The Deathbook of Alice performed 1992 at Sesc Pompéia Theater. Maura participates in the Butoh & Related Arts Festival ’92 in Bremen/Germany. In 1993 the company performs At the foot of the Mountain at the Memorial of Latin America in São Paulo and participates in the Festival Latin American Connection.

In 1994 Maura coordinates the actor training for A Woman dressed in Sun a television show directed by Luiz Fernando Carvalho and broadcast by TV Globo. Maura performs Frida Kahlo: A Stonewoman gives Birth to the Night at Theater Genereal San Martin in Córdoba/Argentina. Wolfgang Pannek directs his play CainAbel performed at Culture Center São Paulo.

In 1995 Taanteatro Companhia organizes the Butoh and Research Theater Festival 1995 curated by Maura Baiocchi and simultaneously produced in São Paulo, Curitiba and Brasilia. Maura Baiocchi’s book Butoh Dança Veredas D’Alma (Butoh – Dance path of the soul) is published on occasion of the festival and becomes a national reference for scholars and students of the performing arts.

In 1996 Wolfgang Pannek organizes in São Paulo the international event Artaud 100 Years, a hommage to the frech poet Antonin Artaud. The project includes the staging of The Conquest (adaptation of The Conquest of México by Antonin Artaud) choreographed by Min Tananka and with Maura Baiocchi as assistant director.Taanteatro’s play Artaud –where god runs with the eyes of a blind woman has its première at the same event. In the same year Baiocchi dances opposite Min Tanaka in In the mood of a Black Mountain at Sérgio Cardoso Theater and directs the urban intervention i – a chips opera. Ophelia’s Subtraction is performed at the Ouro Preto Winter Festival.

In 1997 the company stages Arará – stories sung by the bones at the Contra-Dance Festival at Hilton Theater later peformed at the National Foundation of Arts São Paulo. The company participates with diferente Works of its repertoire in Dance and Theater Festivals in São Paulo, Londrina, Ouro Preto, Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and Santos.

In 1998 the company stages George Tabori’s play Weisman and Copperface directed by Wolfgang Pannekat Goethe Institute. Chants of Maldoror is staged for the first time at the National Foundation of Arts in São Paulo.

In 1999 the company performes Weisman and Copperface at Festival Porto Alegre em Cena and restages Chants of Maldoror at FUNARTE/SP. The company is also commisioned to perform If you were to Frankfurt, a play by George Barcat based on Friedrich Hölderlin. Invited by French artist Nourit Masson Sékiné, Maura performs the solo Tree of Life at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Strasbourg. In the same year Taanteatro initiates the ‘Nietzsche Cycle’ with Matter: State of Power (Contemporary Dance Award, São Paulo), the first of 15 performances about the work of the german philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. Maura Baiocchi performes Ophelia’s Substraction at Centro General Paz in Córdoba/Argentina.

In 2000 Maura creates MatterDeath with over twenty actors and dancers at the Latin American Theater of Córdoba/Argentina. Waiting for Godot conceived and directed by Wolfgang Pannek as an urban intervention is performed in São Paulo.

In 2001, the company inaugurates their countryside headquarters with the annual Taanteatro Residence Workshop for international performing artists. The company celebrates its 10th birthday with the Taanteatro 10 Years Festival. On occasion of this three month celebration at the National Foundation of Arts in São Paulo the company creates Thus spoke Zarathustra based on Friedrich Nietzsche, restages Frida Kahlo: a stonewoman gives birth to night, promotes a cycle of solo performances by its members and guest artists and organizes a solo exhibition of the argentine painter Candelaria Silvestre. Still in 2001 !Submerge! is created in collaboration with the Brooklyn based band Artanker Convoy and the video artist Bruna De Araujo and performed at the Chashama Festival in New York.

In 2002 !Submerge! is restaged with the collaboration of the argentine painter Candelária Silvestro at the International Theater Festival of Córdoba, Argentina. Invited by director José Celso Martinez Correa, the Taanteatro cooperates with Teatro Oficina between 2002 and 2004. Maura Baiocchi and Wolfgang Pannek are in charge of choreography and the actor training actors in Os Sertões (The Earth, The Man and The Man II – São Paulo Critics Award – Best Performance). Os Sertões was performed all over Brazil as well as at the Ruhrfestspiele in Recklinghausen and at the Volksbühne in Berlin/Germany.

In 2004, Maura’s choreography Matter: State of Power receives the Municipal Award for Contemporary Dance of São Paulo. The work is presented in São Paulo and at KUBA in Vegesack/Germany. In the same year the company inaugurates NUTAAN (Nucleus Taanteatro – Formation, Research and Creation) and presents Premonitory Performances at the Culture Workshop of São Paulo State. At FILE | Electronic Languages Festival, Maura Baiocchi coordinates the project Renato Cohen in Process dedicated to the researcher and director Renato Cohen.

In 2005, invited by the City of Matola in Mozambique and co-sponsored by the Brazilian Ministery of Culture, Taanteatro coordenates a long term workshop for the Municipal Company of Chant and Dance of Matola resulting in the work Xiphamanine: the eternal origination of the mphama tree performed at Teatro África in Maputo, at the Center of Culture of the Bank of Mozambique and is broadcast nationally and internationally to Portuguese speacking countries by TVM (Television of Mozambique). Produced by Wolfgang Pannek, Lito Elio and Aurelio Le Bon the project is sponsored by the Ministery of Culture of Brazil.

In 2006 Taanteatro returns to the National University of Córdoba in Argentina to produce extensive workshops and lectures at the Performing Arts Department. The Taanteatro 15 Years Festival at João Caetano Theater (São Paulo) and stages two new works: Zarathustra Machine (selected as one of the 10 most important cultural events of São Paulo by Folha de S. Paulo) inspired by the life and work of Friedrich Nietzsche and Feifei and The Origin of Love, a choreography for children. Maura Baiocchi becomes M.A. in Communication and Semiotics at PUC São Paulo. The choreographer performs Ophelia’s Subtraction at the XYZ Dance Festival of Brasília and lectures at Principles of Stage Arts Project at the José de Alencar Theater in Fortaleza. Taanteatro Companhia is awarded the Municipal Program of Dance in São Paulo for the project Taanteatro + 15 Years and by the National Foundation Dance Award Klauss Vianna for Zaratustra Machine. The company starts NUTAAN 2006/07 and organizes Butoh Expedition, series o lectures and vídeos by the french artist and researcher Nourit Masson Sékiné at the Japan Foundation in São Paulo.

In 2007 the company continues performing Zarathustra Machine at the CEUs Meninos, Butantã, Cidade Dutra and Pêra Marmelo, as well as at the Culture Center São Paulo. It restages Arará – Stories sung by the bones performed at Humboldt Theater, Galerio Olido and Viga Scenic Space. The NUTAAN performs New Presences, a program of 14 interconnnected ‘choreographic monologues’ at the Galeria Olido and Frida Kahlo: a stonewoman gives birth to the night is restaged for three dancers at Galeria Olido, Teatro Fábrica São Paulo and Centro Cultural São Paulo. The work is selected by PROART of the Municipal Secretary of Education of São Paulo. At different sites of São Paulo, the company performs the urban intervention The loneliest hour.The company publishes its first book Taanteatro – choreographic theater of tensions prefaced by philosopher Peter Pál Pelbart.

In 2008 Frida Kahlo: a stonewoman gives birth to the night participates in the São Paulo Cultural Circuit. Maura Baiocchi lectures again at the National University of Brasilia. In the capital of Brazil Taanteatro starts the NUTAAN DF. The project !Zarathustra! receives the National Foundation of Arts Klauss Vianna Dance Award.

In 2009 Frida Kahlo: a stonewoman gives birth to the night is invited to the Feverestival in Campinas. !Zarathustra!, directed by Maura Baiocchi and Wolfgang Pannek, is performed at Teatro da Caixa and at Plinio Marcos Theater in Brasília. Maura Baiocchi’s solo DAN ancestral becoming reveives the National Foundation Dance Award Klauss Vianna. The company realizes the Taanteatro Mini Festival at SESC Garagem in Brasília.

Along 2010 the project DAN, contemplated by the Municipal Program for Dance of São Paulo, is realized in São Paulo. Taanteatro performs Maura Baiocchi’s solo DAN ancestral becoming at Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil (DF) and at Galeria Olido. Rit.U directed by Wolfgang Pannek is staged at Galeria Olido and O Lugar. In the same year Wolfgang Pannek organizes the Hans Thies Lehmann Brazil Tour 2010. The company also lectures at DRIFT by Zecora Ura in Rio de Janeiro and organizes workshops by editor Dorothy Max Prior(UK) and the directors Jade Maravallas (UK) and Jorge Lopes Ramos at Cultura Inglesa São Paulo.

In 2011 Taanteatro Companhia comemorates two decades of creation with the project Taanteatro 20 Years. Awarded with the Municipal Program for Dance of São Paulo the project includes the restaging of Hamlet Machine Fisted and DAN ancestral becoming, the creation and staging of (Im)Pure Dances, the NUTAAN 2011/12, video shows, the 1st Forum of Ecoperformance, workshops and lectures. At the 5th Journey of Investigation of the Department of Arts of Movement of the Universitary Institute of Arts of Buenos Aires, Taanteatro coordinates a workshop and presents the Spanish translation of Taanteatro – choerographic theater of tensions. Still in 2011 Wolfgang Pannek and Maura Baiocchi publish Taanteatro – Rite of passage.

The program of Taanteatro 20 Years is extended to 2012 when Hamlet Machine Fisted written and directed by Wolfgang Pannek is elected Best Dance Play 2011 by the public poll of Guia da Folha de S. Paulo. In 2012 SESC Ipiranga organizes a the Cycle Taanteatro. The company participates in the Choreographic Repertoirs of SESC Ipiranga and performs at the 1st International Art Festival of Brasília, at the Festival Vivadança in Salvador/Bahia, in the 3rd Platform of Dance of São Paulo State, the Dance Festival at Galeria Olido, beyond presenting in other theaters like Espaço Cariris, O Lugar, Satyros, Galeria Olido, CEU Perus, Teatro Coletivo and Teatro Sérgio Cardoso. (Im)Pure Dances, conceived and directed by Maura Baiocchi and with stage design by argentine painter Roque Onofre Fraticelli, is performed at Galeria Olida, Teatro Coletivo and Teatro Sérgio Cardoso. In Argentina Taanteatro Companhia coproduces coproduz the project Misturas conducted by Candelaria Silvestro and realized ath the Historic Cabildo. It also coordenates workshops the National University of Córdoba and Centro Cultural Heitor Tizon in San Salvador de Jujuy. The 2012 activities em with the Butoh-Ohno Workshop at the Barn in Tivoli/New York.

In 2013 the company organizes NUTAANs in Córdoba/Argentina conducted by Rodolfo Ossés at La Caracola and by Ana Beatriz Almeida in Salvador/Bahia. At Theater Nuage Fou in Freiburg/Germany the company performs maura Baiocchi’s solo Variation in Black. Wolfgang Pannek coaches the argentinina dancer Ariana Andreoli in her solo Partida. Still in the same year the company stages Androgyne – Consecration of Fire, a solowork created and performed by Alda Maria Abreu and directed by Maura Baiocchi. The work receives the Denilto Gomes Award, the São Paulo Art Critics Award and the Klauss Vianna Dance Award of the National Foundation of Arts. At the end of the year the company publishes the book Taanteatro – MAE Mandala of Body Energy.

In 2014 Taanteatro presents Androgyne in the São Paulo State Cultural Circuit, at Theater Sérgio Cardoso, as well as in Brasília, Belo Horizonte, Salvador, Palmas e Goiânia. DAN ancestral becoming is also performed in the state capitals of Tocantins e Goiás. Maura Baiocchi performs her latest solo work TRANS at Freud’s Dream Museum of St. Petersburg/Russia, at Théâtre de L’Aire Falguière in Paris/France and at the Free University of Brussels in Belgium. Taanteatro’s new long term Project TRANS is awarded with the Municipal Programm for Dance in São Paulo. At Culture Center Oswald de Andrade the company performs 50 drawings to assassin magic, conceived and directed by Wolfgang Pannek and based on the homonym work by Antonin Artaud. At the same place Maura Baiocchi and Alda Maria Abreu present TRANS and Androgyne. The company holds workshops and organizes debates with the poet Claudio Willer and the philosopher Luiz Orlandi.

In 2015 the 15th edition of the Taanteatro Residence Workshop is held in São Lourenço da Serra. The company participates in the 1st International Congress of Arts of the University of Arts of Buenos Aires/Argentina with a workshop, a book presentation and Maura Baiocchi’s performance TRANS. Participates also in the International Symposium Contemporary Scenic Reflections organized by Lume Teatro at University of Campinas. Taanteatro Companorganhia starts the project cARTAUDgraphy based on the work of Antonin Artaud and directed by Wolfgang Pannek and with choreography by Maura Baiocchi (première in May). For the same year the company will be performing Androgyne – Consacration of Fire and TRANS. The new book, Taanteatro – DeConstruction of Performance, will be published in december.