Pina Bausch

Beauty Madison Film © Riley Stewart / FUZE

Pina Bausch


Auf dem Gebirge hat man ein Geschrei gehört (On the Mountain, a Howl was Heard)

  • Opéra de Lyon
  • 2 hours 30 minutes
    whose1 intermission (s)

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In 1984, Pina Bausch's work Auf dem Gebirge hat man ein Geschrei gehört (On the Mountain, a Howl was Heard) - was animated by "the fear of self-destruction which threatens humanity".
Humour may now be mixed in with the scary but 40 years later, the piece still has all its sharpness: the sources of concern for the future of the world have not really disappeared. 

A Lyon Opera production in collaboration with the Pina Bausch Foundation and Peter Pabst   

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In the spring of 1984, when she created Auf dem Gebirge hat man ein Geschrei gehört (On the Mountain, a Howl was Heard), what did Pina Bausch perceive, from the old cinema in Wuppertal where her company rehearses, of the upheavals in the outside world? When looking at the play, critics have always mentioned the fear of a nuclear disaster... two years before Chernobyl! “Fear has always existed in my shows, but before it touched on the problem of the individual in society. Now it is collective. It is the fear of the whole of humanity threatened with self-destruction or a dark future,” Pina confided (1). Fear, in all its forms, is the central subject of this piece. She casts her diffuse shadow on a universe of brown, soft, messy earth, which covers the stage - an invention of Peter Pabst, a genius production designer - and is embodied in the figure of a macabre clown, a potential executioner who bursts, one after the other, without batting an eyelid, inflatable balloons which he pulls out of his swimming trunks. The ogre of childhood nightmares, the monster of all our fears, his sly presence immediately creates agitation. A tortured world. But, with the sense of ambiguity that was Pina’s speciality, fear mingles with the comic and situations turn from realism to the absurd. Almost 40 years after its creation, now presented by the Lyon Opera Ballet Auf dem Gebirge hat man ein Geschrei gehört has lost nothing of its sharpness, against a soundtrack where the voices of Billie Holiday, Fred Astaire, and Gerry Mulligan crackle, or this song whose title alone is worth the promise of all Pina Bausch's plays: Parlez-moi d’amour...

(1) Raphael de Gubernatis, “The glory of Pina Bausch”, Le Nouvel Observateur, April 10-16, 1987.

Director & Choreographer : Pina Bausch
Production Design : Peter Pabst
Costumes : Marion Cito
Dramaturg : Raimund Hoghe
Musical Collaboration : Matthias Burkert
Collabotation : Hans Pop
Music : Billie Holiday, Fred Astaire, Enrico Caruso, Boris Vian, Henry Purcell, Felix Mendelssohn,...

World première: May 13, 1984, Schauspielhaus Wuppertal

Original Cast
Jakob Andersen, Melanie Karen Lien, Elena Majnoni, Anne Martin,  Dominique Mercy, Jan Minarik (Jean Mindo), Nazareth Panadero, Héléna Pikon,  Arthur Rosenfeld, Jean-Laurent Sasportes, Janusz Subicz, Beatrice Libonati, Ed  Kortlandt, Anne Marie Benati, Bénédicte Billiet, Matthias Burkert, Jean-François, Duroure, Dominique Duszynski, Josephine Ann Endicott, Lutz Förster, Kyomi Ichida, Urs Kaufmann, Silvia Kesselheim, Francis Viet



Jo Ann Endicott, Jorge Puerta Armenta

Production Design

Gerburg Stoffel

Production Design and Costumes

Petra Leidner


Matthias Burkert

Musical Collaboration

Andreas Eisenschneider, Karsten Fischer


Peter Pabst, Jo Verlei


Gertraud Johne

Ballet de l'Opéra de Lyon

Why we love it

It is the first time that a piece by Pina Bausch has been performed on the stage of the Lyon Opera House.

Why we love it

The Lyon Opera Ballet is adding a piece as rare as it is unusual to its repertoire.

Why we love it

No one emerges from this intense experience unscathed.

Why we love it

Pina Bausch was able with this piece to transform howls, into movement.

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