at Pavillon Kulturzentrum (2016)

“Schunke meets Sánchez”, or rather, “Schunke and Sánchez in conversation”. On their joint search for correspondence, they develop ideas, motives, each of them suggesting to the other in a state of indefinite listening and alertness, as though they were constantly arranging the exchange of little compositional bite-size items the terms of which she – the dancer – and he – the musician – modifies according to their own expertise. 

Those who seek neat transposition from one art form into the other will be disappointed, so will be those who cannot help, but set a hierarchy between music and movement, for Schunke is as much tuned to Sánchez’s own sound as is Sánchez to his twists and grips moving across the keyboard. 

No harmonic change goes unnoticed, no sliding foot stays unobserved, but yet, the “thing”, that abstract communication, the undercurrent of their conversation becomes apparent through the gradual unfolding on stage, through the intermittent silences, the stops, the taking-time to take-in.

 “Schunke meets Sánchez” is an encounter of the finest kind: both artists carry with them the legacy, training, and experience of their respective discipline, both know how to interact when to impose and when to restrain. 

Sánchez’s clarity, her unique architectural language befits the dynamic and at times anharmonic shifts that Schunke is able to concoct with ease and a light touch. Theirs is a word game, a play of breaking up the syntax, where one starts the sentence for the other to finish…only to have cheekily shifted the subject in the meantime. 

In this exciting new project internationally acclaimed choreographer and dancer Judith Sánchez Ruíz (Trisha Brown, Sasha Waltz, Deborah Hay, David Zambrano, Steve Coleman, Henry Threadgill) meets renowned composer and jazz pianist Sebastian Schunke (Paquito de Rivera, Antonio Sanchez, Nils Wogram, Richie Flores) to shape a fascinating, abstract symbiosis of contemporary dance, improvisation and composition. 

Both artists share diverse influences; Sánchez hails from Cuba, a country whose musical culture has been deeply inspiring Schunke since his early teens, both lived in New York for several years, and both moved to Berlin in search for their artistic accomplishment. 

It is exactly this trinity – Latin America, modern New York, modern Berlin – which marks the bond between these two exceptional artists and which has become the foundation of their new creative project. Schunke’s unique style of instant composition makes a set of new anharmonic and structural forms emerge which will then find its entry into Sánchez’s movement, only to be shaped further and returned to Schunke, feeding and informing his play. Clearly defined compositional elements alternate with free improvisation, seamlessly morphing back and forth between danced gestures and piano sounds.


Concept: Sebastian Schunke  and Judith Sánchez Ruíz

Music: Sebastian Schunke

Performer: Judith Sanchez Ruiz