Premiere June 2011 Hau 1 Hebbel am Ufer

Video © Walter Bickmann |

is maybe
by Jared Gradinger and Angela Schubot
After the success of their first duet “What they are instead of” (2009) the second work by Angela Schubot and Jared Gradinger, “is maybe”, is continuing their research of 'debordering' the body. The starting point is the search for an unconditional togetherness that fuels the chance to escape from one’s own identity. “is maybe” deals with the question which physical realities will come into being when individuals do not do anything about maintaining their “I”, when they stop “I-ing” and instead implode during an exhausting action. Can I escape from my own “I” whilst looking for a home in someone else in an unconditional being-together? To answer these questions Schubot and Gradinger collaborate with the US-American street artist Mark Jenkins who is well known for his installations of body doubles in public space that look strikingly real.

Installation: Mark Jenkins and Sandra Fernandez
Sound Design: Johannes Malfatti
Lights: Andreas Harder
Choreographische Mitarbeit: Sigal Zouk
Photos: Florian Braun
Assistants: Anjulie Brender, Pia Bruer, Tina Gebler, Katrin Gottschalk, Daphna Munz, Amelie Wedel
Press and Production: Björn&Björn

A production by Angela Schubot and Jared Gradinger in co-production with HAU and Pictoplasma. Supported by the Artist-in-Residence-Programme of Tanzlabor _21 / Tanzbasis Frankfurt_Rhein_Main. Sponsored with funds from the Mayor of Berlin – Senate Chancellery – Cultural Affairs and the Fonds Darstellende Künste e.V.

is maybe von Jared Gradinger und Angela Schubot
Das Projekt „is maybe“ ist eine Kollaboration von Jared Gradinger und Angela Schubot und will in Fortsetzung ihres erfolgreichen Duetts „What they are instead of“ Identitäten auflösen und andere Formen von Koexistenzen erreichen. Es ist ein Versuch, gegen das Konzept des unteilbaren Individuums Körper zu stellen, die unendlich teilbar und unendlich wandelbar sind.

Die Arbeit wird sich mit der Frage beschäftigen, welche körperlichen „Realitäten“ entstehen, wenn Individuen nichts zum Inhalt ihres „Ichs“ machen, aufhören zu „ichen“.

Der Ausnahme-Street Artist Mark Jenkins wird den Theaterraum gestalten und dadurch eine Verwischung von Subjektgrenzen auch auf räumlicher Ebene physisch erfahrbar machen.

Das Individuum scheint in die Isolation hinausgetrieben und das Kollektiv scheint in die Vermassung hineinzusinken.
„is maybe“ versucht die Beziehungen zum Du und die zum Ich neu zu ordnen und die daraus resultierendem Körper und ihre Beziehungen einem Publikum zugänglich zu machen.


Angela Schubot and Jared Gradinger are standing, facing each other and closing their eyes. Until the end of their hour long dance performance "is maybe" at HAU 1 they will not open them again. No look is cast on the other - because looking creates distance. And these two are longing for unlimited closeness, for an unconditional symbiosis. "Is maybe" revolves around the wish to be redeemed from the invidual self. Accompanied by mellow ambient sounds the dancers venture more and more into the sphere of pure perception. With sharpened senses they move towards each other. At first they are only feeling around for each other, not touching. A highly erotic scene. But then his hands push into her face, she presses him to the floor with the weight of her body. Both gasp for breath in this iron grip. What started so tenderly turns into an aggressive act: the step from "I" to "Us" transports us into an increasingly furious stranglehold.
Mark Jenkins floating sculptures show the connection of two bodies in impossible variations. But the unconditional will to disintegration is met with physical resistance. Two that can't take their hands off each other: Schubot and Gradinger show themselves as devoted performers who match physical vehemence with breakneck humour.
Sandra Luzina, Tagesspiegel Berlin, 19.Juli 2011

'In their most recent work ‘Is Maybe’, the Berlin based choreographers, Jared Gradinger and Angela Schubot, created a duet where each covered the other’s face with their hand. In this way their two bodies seemed to become one, to create another being or ‘thing’ out of themselves but at the same time to create a duality where we were able to see, on the one hand, Jared and Angela, and on the other, the ‘thing’ or being that they shared and which seemed to exist in a logic of it’s own universe. This work searched for a freedom from a habituated, implicated self through the creation of this other body or ‘thing’, which was both them and not them, and which enabled the conditions for both to be in a state of constant ‘becoming’.
Lisa Densem 2011

You don't have to resort to Platon to understand the nature of love and the urge for unification. But in the last consequence Angela Schubot and Jared Gradinger refer to the same concepts, when they relate their latest work to the "delimitation of the body" and to an attempt to "escape the individual identity" through "unconditional togetherness". An attempt that is doomed to failure. Despite all desperate efforts Angela Schubot and Jared Gradinger do not become one. It is (as already discussed in Platon's "Symposion") a hopeless enterprise. And so "is maybe" ends as the performance had started a good hour earlier: with the two artists, standing facing each other.

As in their first collaborative project "What they are instead of" two years ago the co founder of Two Fish and the co founder of Constanza Macras/Dorky Park try everything to test their boundaries. The grasp into the other's face does not occur without reason, and the body contact intensifies in the course of the performance to a degree that we actually have the impression that they swallow up each other. Indeedn, Jared Gradinger literally locks his jaws on Angela Schubot at some moment and is unable to let go of her. But inbetween they also freeze in sculptural poses similar to he ones the US-American street artist Mark Jenkins has created out of transparent adhesive tape. His "tape sculptures" are floating like trial balloons over the stage or squat on the floor: conjoined headless figures that seem to embody the utopic notion of the two performers.

All this is nearly too beautiful to behold under the ice cold light design of Andreas Harder. It is no coincidence that the piece only really gets under your skin when the revolving stage comes to a hold again and the muted thudding music dies down. The rest of the evening is not silence, but a last shared breath.
Hatmut Regitz,, 19.juli 2011

©Florian Braun ©Florian Braun ©Florian Braun