Artistic Outreach – The Empathic Body

Artistic Outreach – The Empathic Body

The format “Artistic Outreach – the empathic body” is centrally based on the transfer of choreographic methods on the topics of empathy (2020-2023), distance (2021), imitation (2022) and manipulation (2023), which will be taught in workshops and advanced training courses to students and teachers in schools in Cologne and NRW as well as in Munich.

The program accompanies the stage productions of Silke Z. and the ensemble DIE METABOLISTEN.

Students are invited to attend the professional rehearsal processes and to participate in the development of material (movement and texts). In this way, the Generation U 20 “advises” the artistic team and becomes part of the creative-artistic output.

The content is conveyed to students and teachers in schools and in cooperation with other institutions in Cologne with the help of analog and digital workshops. If there are further school closures due to the pandemic, we will switch to purely digital teaching and reflection. In these formats, the students and teachers will nevertheless gain practical, dance-based experience on the topic and work together. The project also includes participation in rehearsals and performances as part of the productions, possibly in the form of live stream formats.

Many of the current social problems are caused by people experiencing a lack of self-worth, self-efficacy and social recognition. Especially in times of pandemic, isolation and “social distancing” exacerbate this problem. What is one’s own – and idiosyncratic – must be constantly hemmed in to predetermined guidelines. As a result, the richness of individual potential and confidence in one’s own abilities and needs are lost. The resulting feelings of alienation are in turn compensated for by devaluing other perspectives and life plans. A vicious circle with visibly destructive consequences for democratic and solidarity-based coexistence: isolation, narcissism and feelings of loss of meaning increase. Empathy falls by the proverbial wayside.

The large-scale participation project “The empathic body” starts – instead of external performance requirements – from the stubbornness and potential of each individual. Thus, this concept initiates a fundamental change of perspective towards a contemporary understanding of education, which is able to promote a more social togetherness in the sense of strengthening community and self-efficacy.

The main target group for the outreach program are students (children and youth), teachers and lecturers who would like to participate in workshops between 2021 and 2023.

If you are interested, please contact us at:

Tel: 0221 2226663

Photo: © Meyer Originals

Info (only german) on our workshops, labs, and outreach formats:

Outreach I Querfeld-rein und Querfeld-raus

Outreach I Querfeld-rein und Querfeld-raus

Querfeldein offers an accompanying education programme for young audiences: Querfeld-rein and Querfeld-raus.

Querfeld-rein and Querfeld-raus tie in with the specific content and aesthetic themes of the respective plays. The education programme works primarily with physical movement instructions that can open up physical and individual access to artistic processes as well as to self-perception for children and young people through sensory and perceptual exercises.

What is Querfeld-rein?

Here, a preparatory introduction is offered to make it easier for the young audience to “find their way in” to the mostly still unknown aesthetics of contemporary dance before attending the theatre. For groups in which many children or young people have a great urge to move or the concentration span is low, a mediation format directly before the performance is recommended. Here, physical tension can be released and perception exercises that address the empathic sense of movement can be used to get in the mood for the theatre visit.

What is Querfeld-raus?

The follow-up format offers the young audience a joint conclusion after the theatre visit: what has been seen is sensually recreated through guided physical exercises and activated again through the body memory. The young audience can exchange ideas in a guided discussion both in the group and with the artists and dance mediators. In the follow-up format, specific features of the dance piece, such as the use of costumes, objects, etc., or the musical level are also the starting point for guided improvisations that offer the children the opportunity to relate what they have seen to their own world of experience.
Reflections in another artistic medium, such as painting activities, in which the young audience can visualise their memories and feelings about the dance piece they have seen, can also be used as a mediation strategy.

How do I book the format Querfeld-rein and Querfeld-raus?

The educational staff of schools, daycare centers, youth recreational facilities or social institutions can book an appointment with artists and dance mediators through the Querfeldein team. The dance professionals who carry out the mediation formats are selected by the artistic management team of Querfeldein and have experience both in the mediation of artistic content and in dance and theater pedagogical work with children and young people.

It is possible to carry out the outreach formats either in the dance studio directly before or after the performance in the ehrenfeldstudios, Wißmannstr.38, 50823 Cologne or one to two weeks before the performance in a room in the respective institution or school. 

Accompanying material 

During the Corona period, an additional educational package (video tutorials, theoretical exercises, information) was developed, which day-care centres are welcome to use.

Teachers are provided with background material that gives them an insight into contemporary dance theatre work for the very young and sensitises them to its development.

If you are interested or have further questions, please feel free to contact us.

By e-mail at: or by phone at: 0177 7 82 28 25

We look forward to hearing from you!

Your ehrenfeldstudios team


The program series Querfeldein as well as the accompanying outreach program is supported by the RheinEnergie Stiftung Kultur.

Fatty Chain | a round dance for all from 5 years onwards

Fatty Chain | a round dance for all from 5 years onwards

Postponed! Info about new dates will follow soon.


Fatty Chain | a round dance for all from 5 years onwards | tanzfuchs PRODUKTION

Side by side, behind each other, around in a circle – hands held out, shoulders clasped, elbows hooked underneath – six dancers move through the room like one unit. 

Together they create the rhythm that guides them. Who leads the group? Is there a master of ceremonies? Through the complexity of movement, rhythm and song, the performers merge into a unity, a chain: like the links of a chain, they are interwoven, connected, sometimes open, sometimes closed – without beginning – without end, sometimes as a circle, sometimes as a row. With their movements they interweave, tie themselves to each other and thus create a human web, a body chain. They negotiate with each other, each is responsible – each chain is as strong as its weakest link. The performers engage in an increasingly frenzied game, breathing new energy and fun into the time-honored dances and chants. This creates a dynamic and rhythm that is also transferred to the audience and breathes new life into the tradition of the round dance. With her new production, choreographer Barbara Fuchs immerses herself in the tradition of the REIG – in this oldest cultural asset of the Occident, dance and song become a community-building ritual. All movements – no matter from which culture they originate – become a ceremonial act and the dance a magical ceremony of movement. The bodies of the performers are central to the ritual acts as well as to the collective embodiment. After the round dance was replaced by the couple dance in Europe, this collective kind of embodiment still shows up in everyday ritual actions: from playing and storytelling together in kindergarten, to spiritual body communities in yoga and tai chi, to collectively ecstatic bodies in la ola waves and communal chants in soccer stadiums.

 FATTY CHAIN is a production of tanzfuchs PRODUKTION in cooperation with ehrenfeldstudios e.V., supported by the Cultural Office of the City of Cologne, the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Fonds Darstellende Künste.

tanzfuchs PRODUKTION receives top funding from the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.



Direction, Stage, Light: Barbara Fuchs

Music: Jörg Ritzenhoff

Performance: Odile Foehl, Katharina Sim, Alina Feske, Arthur Schopa, Michael Zier, Philine Herrlein

Costume: Stefanie Bold Lighting: Wolfgang Pütz

Press Work: Kerstin Rosemann

Production Management, Photos: Olivia Bott

NRW Scholarship holder for children’s and youth theater: Ronja Nadler

WE | The Empathic Body Vol. 1

WE | The Empathic Body Vol. 1


Thur, May 6, 2021 | 7pm

You can get a ticket here!

We are emotional.
We are resilient.
We are dependent.
We are loving.
We are uncertain.
We are envious, assaulting, grateful.
We are strange – tender – ignorant – freaky.
We are diverse.

Man as a social being has the ability to empathize with others, to put himself in their place, to take the place of the other. Can we not do otherwise? “WE” transfers the natural forms of emotional contagion into dance-choreographic settings. The performers take a tightrope walk between attraction and aversion, affection and assault.

Silke Z.’ Ensemble DIE METABOLISTEN negotiates in “WE” about empathy and faces the invasive, encroaching side of empathy. This first production of the project “DER EMPATHISCHE KÖRPER” lays the foundation for a perennial examination of the topic “empathy”. The intergenerational company is looking for new performative perspectives to approach the complex of themes and cultivate “WE” feelings.



Artistic direction and choreography | Silke Z.

Performance | Daniela Riebesam, Vivien Kovarbasic, Caroline Simon, Florian Patschovsky, Dennis Schmitz, Angus Balbernie, Bettina Muckenhaupt, Jimin Seo, David Winking, Lisa Kirsch, Karel Vanek, Rebecca Bednarzyk, Hanna Held

Music composition | Nikolaj Grunwald, André Zimmermann

Lighting design | Wolfgang Pütz

Dramaturgy Consulting | Barbara Fuchs

Dance education | Andrea Marton, Caroline Simon

Administration/Management | Olivia Bott

Public Relations | Vinya Cameron

Press work | Kerstin Rosemann

Photo documentation | Jacqueline Stade

The overall concept is supported by the following partners:

Co-production: Fokus Tanz e.V. / Think Big! Festival Munich, Junges Schauspielhaus Bochum.

Cooperation: Albertus-Magnus Gymnasium, Cologne, Ruhr University Bochum, German Sport University, Cologne, ehrenfeldstudios e.V.

Funded by the State of NRW as part of the 3-year concept funding and the City of Cologne as part of the multi-year project funding.



“Meeting artists is transformative because it confronts students with different ways of working. At the core of every work of art is the question of the method used to create it. In this way, new horizons open up to students in a world that is in danger of going to ruin because of its ‘wealth neglect.’ ” (Thomas Linden, Choices)

Sharing Across Borders | international networking festival

Sharing Across Borders | international networking festival

From September 24th to 26th 2021, the ehrenfeldstudios host the first edition of the dance network festival Sharing Across Borders, in Cologne! The festival weekend will be filled with performances, workshops, seminars with lots of opportunities of exchange to center the theme of networking.

The evening programme is filled with performances by European artists. In the afternoons, emerging local talents showcase their projects in our pitching program SHARING IDEAS and have the opportunity to meet potential partners. Artists from more than four European countries will be gathering in Cologne over one weekend to maintain and strengthen cultural bonds across borders – especially in times like this! Furthermore, the festival offers a 2-day workshop, a symposium, and artist talks in our “soup kitchen” to allow for exchange and networking.

We are looking forward to a late summer festival program with these artists/companies:

Liisa Pentti (Helsinki, Finland)

Companhia Paulo Ribeiro (Viseu, Portugal)

Compagnie Humaine (Nice, France)

Low Air Urban Dance Theatre (Vilnius, Lithuania)

äöü and Jung Sun Kim (Bochum, Germany)

TachoTinta (Bochum, Germany)

Katharina Senzenberger (Cologne, Germany)

Gabriel Carneiro (Bochum, Germany)

Dennis Alexander Schmitz (Cologne, Germany)


7pm – Dance Double-Bill

Companhia Paulo Ribeiro – “A solo for society”

Liisa Pentii – “Cloudbody – a ecology of dreams #2”

9pm – TALK: the studiotrade network introduces itself



10am-1pm -Outdoor Workshop with Éric Oberdorff, Part 1

Lunchtime – Time to relax in our beautiful outside space

2pm-6pm – SHARING IDEAS Pt. 1 // Start of the network fair and showing of works in progress

Dennis Alexander Schmitz „Lost in Spaces – Trip 17“

äöü und Jung Sun Kim – „Es war einmal die Zukunft – ein performatives Zukunftslabor“

Gabriel Carneiro – „Niemandes Boden“

8pm – Performance Éric Oberdorff Compagnie Humaine – „Ma vie revée“

9pm – „Soup kitchen“ communal cooking and chatting

11pm – Late Night Movie: „Game Over”  by LowAir



10am-1pm: Outdoor Workshop with Éric Oberdorff Part 2

3pm-6pm – Sharing Ideas Part 2

TachoTinta – “Misdirection”

Katharina Senzenberger – “Solid Liquid“

6pm – collective dinner

7pm – Get Together: Sharing contacts & sharing experience, social and cozy conclusion of the festival












This is a first look into our program. We will regularly inform about changes in the program here and our social media channels.