The New Patrons of Marl

Patrons: Hannelore Apitzsch, Werner Eisbrenner, Monika Kaczerowski, Kurt Langer, Heidi Pfeifer, Irene Rasch-Erb, Rolf Schumann (†), Brigitte Schumann-Knauff, Dr. Ulrich  Spies, Karin Wagner, Paul Wagner

Mediator: Lea Schleiffenbaum

Artist: Sasha Waltz

Duration: 2019 ongoing

Partners: Kulturstiftung des Bundes

In C –Marl Score

The citizens of the city of Marl possess an incomparable treasure: in an ambitious program in the course of the 1950s and 1960s, the city resolved the construction of school buildings, a completely new kind of city hall, and other community buildings to develop a new democratic communal feeling after World War II.

To this day, ensembles like the shopping center with integrated educational facility and the cityscape’s pervasion with outstanding sculptures make Marl a model of cultural participation accessible to all its citizens. Where elsewhere biennials provide temporary glamour, art and culture have a lasting presence in Marl’s cityscape.

The New Patrons of Marl would like to bring this innovative understanding of the city back into the urban community’s consciousness and open it up for new generations. To this purpose, the New Patrons of Marl were able to engage the internationally renowned choreographer Sasha Waltz. Her project In C – Marler Partitur uses the means of dance to bring to life the cultural heritage of the city of Marl.

We want to connect the city's cultural heritage, Marl's unique buildings from the 1960s and 1970s, and make them accessible to a new generation.

The New Patrons group with Sasha Waltz and team on a tour of the city

The New Patrons group and Sasha Waltz on a town walk

Photo: Florian Wagner
Group dancing in a building in Marl

Rehearsal for "In C – Marler Partitur"

Photo: Florian Wagner
Dance group in a public place in Marl

Presentation of "In C – Marler Partitur"

Photo: Florian Wagner

An Intuitive Experience of Community for the Entire City

Sasha Waltz’s In C – Marler Partitur takes up Terry Riley’s Composition In C (1964), with which the dance company has already gathered experience in other projects. It is composed of 53 musical phrases that the musicians can repeat at their own discretion. The choreography follows this principle and envisages 53 figures of movement that can overlay each other and shift in a “structured improvisation” that follows clear rules. In a process lasting several months, groups of the city’s citizens organized to rehearse these figures, entirely or in simplified form.

On a presentation weekend in September 2022, these groups of citizens performed In C – Marler Partitur on various sites in the city. On the performance weekend, the participants spiralled to the center of the city, where at the end of the second day, the major performance with all participants and the dancers of the company Sasha Waltz & Guests took place.

It is important to emphasize that this major performance is not to be understood as a finale, but as an overture. Thus, Marl will become an image of motion, whose contributors constantly set themselves in relation to all the others who practice the figures of the Partitur. Here, an intuitive experience of community will take the place of linguistic forms of discourse. In C — Marler Partitur knows no hierarchy and excludes no one. It is a call to all citizens of Marl to join the dance and join in shaping the Marl of the future.