Author Archive

A Dark World of Dance – Kreatur by Sasha Waltz

A Dark World of Dance – Kreatur by Sasha Waltz

What if the ugly side of our society could be born into this world in flesh and bone? Fear, envy, and aggressiveness become living creatures that torture, kill and feed on all of us? This nightmarish vision is what you can expect from the new avant-garde dance piece Kreatur by acclaimed choreographer Sasha Waltz at Radialsystem.

The Berlin-based choreographer hasn’t show any new dance piece in Berlin for 12 years now and her comeback is highly anticipated but also critically observed. The reason: her future role as director of the Staatsballett Berlin which caused quite some controversy in the last year.

With Kreatur she definitely showed her critics what she is capable of. Showing transgression, darkness, pain without being obvious or superficial. Especially with the amazing costumes by iconic Dutch avant-garde designer Iris van Herpen Sasha Waltz evokes a turmoil of demons and sinners lost in a world of sterility and artificial light.

Claudio by Claudio
on June 14th, 2017
in Art, Theater

Weekend Escape from Berlin: Apulia and Castro

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The end of the world can be a beautiful place sometimes. At least that’s the case for Apulia the high heel of the boot of Italy and the little village of Castro at its bottom. There you really feel you have reached the end of all the worlds you know. No big city, no hustle and bustle, no futurism, no minimalism and certainly no cold. Neither the weather nor the heart of the welcoming people cheering travelers and tourist alike.

To give you a more unconventional description for this beautiful place we had the pleasure to experience for just two days, we will tell you more about the 4 unique colors we saw.

Claudio by Claudio
on May 12th, 2017
in Travel

We heart Milan – Our Visit to Milan Design Week 2017

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What can you do when Berlin gives you -2 degrees in April? We decided to give ourself a break from this great city with the ass-cold (free translation of the German term arschkalt) heart and start the season of Spring properly while escaping to Milan and visit the Milan Design Week. Sounds pretty spoiled, huh?

Well to be fair and square, Milan Design Week is a posh event only in certain ways. First of all most exhibitions and events are for free and without any guestlist involved. Secondly, flights from Berlin to Milan are more than affordable even close to Design Week. But mostly I think the event is so enjoyable and down to earth because the whole city with all inhabitants are curious about it and love to spend time visiting it. So you might enjoy the giant cockring designed by Hermes next to the Italian grannies from the neighborhood, or you might be playing in the playground of Toilet Paper Magazine or Marni with toddlers and battle for the best selfie poses with Italian high school kids. And I can promise you, you won’t win that battle.

So we were spoiled with good weather, nice Aperitivos and lots of playful design but were kind enough to come back to Berlin with lots of beautiful photos by Alicia Kassebohm. So after the jump we show you our favorite design highlights and trends we picked up there.

Claudio by Claudio
on May 2nd, 2017
in Design, Travel

Dancing Against the End of the World

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photo: Paulio Sovari

Every form of artistic expression is capable of doing good in the world. Even ballet dance that was once created to entertain the kings and queens of this world with the movements that seemed almost superhuman at the time can become a tool of change. A change of society that needs to start through the arts from the stages of theaters, operas, and ballet houses. Because there it starts a conversation that is not motivated by politics but by an emotional perspective on our human life and society.

I’m quite excited that Nacho Duato, the current artistic director of Staatsballett Berlin, is creating another piece that is dedicated to a social topic. In his upcoming premiere called Erde he is creating a vision of our world under the current ecological circumstances of climate change. For this unique premiere he collaborated with locals from the Berlin electronic music scene like Pedro Alcalde, Sergio Caballero and Richie Hawtin just to name a few.

On the same night, there will be another premiere of this double bill evening. The British-Israeli choreographer Hofesh Shechter has now given one of his works to the repertoire of the Staatsballett Berlin called “The Art of Not Looking Back”. Shechter is internationally acclaimed and well known for his controversial pieces.

Claudio by Claudio
on April 19th, 2017
in Theater

A Devil’s Feast at the Opera

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photo: Monika Rittershaus

If the devil came to Berlin he would not be able to scare a single soul. Because Berliners have real problems like rising rents, shitty jobs or not getting into Berghain (depending on priorities) and have no time for religious superstitions. It’s quite a different story in the small village of Sorochinsky in the middle of nowhere in the Ukraine where the devil is the cause for a lot of fear and trauma.
At least what I learned from the opera “The Fair of Sorochinsky” by Russian composer Mussorgsky which I had the chance to enjoy last weekend at Komische Oper Berlin. In between Russian folklore, impossible relationships and a devil’s feast with pigs on fire I had a musical enlightenment I would like to share with you.

Claudio by Claudio
on April 12th, 2017
in Theater

A Hidden Beauty Gem Called Brunette

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“Would you like a make-over?” This is usually not the kind of question you want to hear from anybody (especially family or friends who should always love you the way you like). But when this question comes in an eMail send by Brunette – a hair salon some of my friends were already telling me so much about – Frank and I didn’t think twice about giving it a try.

A couple of months ago we decided to arrange a “hair date” to test this newly redesigned hair salon inside a former barn. Actually, for me it was more like a social experiment to see if a hair dresser would dare to tell my dear Frank to cut his rocker hair off. But unfortunately the gay couple who runs this place, Lars and Andre, have more an open heart for the well-being and the comfort of their customers rather than my entertaining hidden agenda. So be it! The hair date went fine, and while I really got quite a strong make-over, Frank just got what he wished for: a little trim of the end of his long blonde hair.

The salon is situated in a hidden courtyard at Tempelhofer Ufer, not too far away from the gallery district of Potsdamer Straße. The whole area around Potsdamer Straße has become the new it-place. So Brunette might be on your way if you want to spend your night at some vernissage or other social event in that area.

Still we recommend to make an appointment when you have some free time to spare to enjoy their treatments and care to the fullest. The address and some images after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 31st, 2017
in Schöneberg, Wellness

One Night in Slut Paulo

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photo: Andre Ligeiro

The wild colorful Carnival might be over in Brazil but I want to introduce you to a place where the carnal sins don’t need glitter or costumes to be celebrated during night and day: Sao Paulo. Maybe New York never sleeps but Sao Paulo never stops to fuck. The two times in my life I have been to Sao Paulo I felt every time like falling through Dantes Inferno and seeing devils, demons, witches and pagan gods celebrating love and lust to their fullest. This megalopolis, this biggest city in the whole South American continent is a safe haven for the artists, the crazies, the queers, the rockers and everybody else who does not want to conform to religious rules or a closed minded society.

But wait! What about Berlin you might say? Well, of course the apple of sins in the neighbor’s garden looks always more delicious. While Paulistas and Brazilians in general love the open mindedness and carelessness Berliners tend to have towards sex and sexual relationships I definitely enjoyed the way Paulistas flirted and interacted with each other. Much more warm and friendly, still carnal and maybe even more body-centered then in Berlin.

Last time, three years ago, I danced inside an abandoned skyscrapers turned into a cultural center in the middle of the city. This time around I visited a former brothel turned into a night club called L’Amour. A place that is so small that most part of the party crowd is actually enjoying and celebrating each other on the street in front of it. Fortunately, there were a couple of photographers taking shots of the crowd (that enjoyed their presence while posing to the death).

Have a look on how the wild kids in Sau Paulo enjoy their nights and let’s hope for some good street parties in a much more warmer Berlin soon, too.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 30th, 2017
in Party, Photos, Travel

Discovering the 5 Elements of Chinese Cuisine in Berlin

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photos by Tang Yi and Jacob Schickler

Some people need to travel far to make different memories all over the world. I sometimes just need to travel inside the inner ring of  Berlin to collect the same amount of crazy experiences somebody could get from a trip to another continent. And there is a simple reason for that: the Berlin inhabitants are a bunch of curious people, traveling the world and exploring different cultures and bringing their findings back to our city to share it with the other Berliners.

To make an example: I have never been to China and still I got the chance to discover the variety and sophistication of Chinese cuisine right in the middle of Berlin. This happened more by coincidence than by choice. My friend Jacob Schickler who used to live in China for many years started a pop-up restaurant called That Woo together with Yuhang Wu, originally from China but professionally trained chef as a Chef in Germany.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 28th, 2017
in Restaurants

A Mysterious Burning Lantern in Kreuzberg

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There she is. A lantern burning all alone. In the quietness of a Spring night in Berlin Kreuzberg. Nobody is walking around, because it is still too cold to go for a walk at night. It’s not night anymore, still it’s not day yet either. But the brightest light is without any doubt the lantern itself. Flickering like a friendly fireplace without looking damaged or vandalized at all.

This weird setting is somehow quite explanatory for the work of video artist Johannes Vogl. The Berlin-based artist creates sculptures with everyday objects and often thermodynamic manipulation. His had a bit of a viral hit on big platforms like Nowness with a video showing a burning swing.

But for me personally the burning lantern is my favorite one. Not because it is so charismatically situated at the 3-Länder-Eck where the canals of the river Spree of Treptow, Kreuzberg and Neukölln meet. It’s more the meditative and ghostly surreal effect that this video has on me that made me want to write about it. See for yourself. The burning lantern and a couple more videos by Johannes Vogl, after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 20th, 2017
in Art, Videos

Goodbye to my Favorite Berghain Artwork

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Piotr Nathan, The Rituals of Disappearance, Berghain, Berlin (2004), photo: © Christine Frenzl

A visual memory can be triggered over and over again by art and architecture. Therefore it is like saying goodbye to one part of your own history when a building or an artwork has to leave its original place. This morning the news spread out that the artwork by Piotr Nathan which is presented in the entrance hall of Berghain will be sold piece by piece on this website.

First I was kind of sad, about the fact that I will not see the entire artwork in the original form again. I remember seeing it over 10 years ago for the first time and being impressed by the fine lines creating the landscape and storms. The artwork is like a mysterious representation of a natural phenomena. Nature that was regarded as divinity in indigenous times and that loved and feared by the little humans at the same time.

The Rituals of Disappearance (2004) have nowadays such a cult-status that it probably won’t last long until its completely sold out (in fact only an hour after its release only a few blank plates were left to buy).  The artist prefers to sell it in fragments to the people who have experienced and loved the club, and wants those who danced near the mural to have a part of it. The lasting impression of the complete work should exist only in the minds of those who experienced it at the club. A memory to keep up in mind and cherish for its beauty and brutality at the same time.

And since  life ist fortunately not just about old memories let’s be excited about the new dance floor and what artworks will be presented there…

Claudio by Claudio
on March 17th, 2017
in Art