Raise The Roof

Anke Hoffmann

Four female dancers move, each one for herself, to songs that cannot be heard by the viewer. With their Stiletto heels they appear to tear up the tar covered rooftop; the electronically amplified sound of these charged dance steps create a new wild hearing experience, which in turn unites the isolated movement of the dancers. Each of the four protagonists wears a T-shirt with the title and duration of the song that can only be heard through the dancer’s headphones; each dancer moves to this rhythm across an imaginary dance floor. Besides each private ecstasy, and strong impressions of freedom, a triumph over restriction is conveyed through the dances. Amongst other things these intended links draw their motivation from the historical relevance of this particular place, a former border section between West and East Berlin; this roof served as a patrol route for GDR border soldiers and was heavily guarded.

Nevin Aladağ’s video work and its preliminary performance Raise The Roof deal with the connotation of control, and the liberation from it, the affiliation to a group, and the isolation within such through expression of a – specifically female – resistance. Aladağ’s staging of this work has expanded on her familiar use of urban spaces; taking us from the streets to the rooftops of Berlin.

Anke Hoffmann, 2007