NOTE: This website is currently UNDER CONSTRUCTION … … which means, it keeps moving! For now, you’ll find future EVENTS - contemporary dance performances, workshops etc. - bits ABOUT ME and an E-MAIL-ADDRESS to contact me.
Events : 2019
May 24 – 19:45
Royal Opera House - London/UK
[Discussion] INSIGHTS – DANCE AND DISABILITY
May 30 – June 02
Urbanraum und Uferstudios.Hosted by Making a Difference - Berlin/Germany
[Workshop] Advanced Teacher training with Mirjam Gurtner
July 17 – 20
Manchester International Festival - Machester/UK
[Performance] THANK YOU VERY MUCH by Claire Cunningham
July 29 – August 02
ImPulsTanz - Vienna/Austria
[Workshop] Dance and Discussion with Nina Mühlemann and Jeremy Wade
Well, come in dear LADIES, GENTLETHEM and GENTLEMEN!
My name is Tanja Erhart, I identify as a dis_abled cultural scientist, contemporary dancer and a human being of many. At the time I’m writing these lines I am sitting in my home office, windows wide open with sunshine and fresh air breezes. Parts of my hair is dancing with the breeze, while other parts are tied-up tight to a little bun. I am wearing a moss-green two-piece outfit with two different textures woven together in a beehive pattern and a colourful pearl bracelet from my niece Emilia. Originally, I am from Tirol / Austria, I studied cultural- and social anthropology in Vienna, trained myself in contemporary dance throughout the world and am now based in London.
My crutches are leaning next to me against the bedframe, they have signs of wear and tear, which makes not only the silver shine through the black paint of the metal, but also makes them wise and sexy. My wheelchair shows some shiny wisps of silver too, but CappuccinoLady, as I call her, is not with me right now, she is in my chilli-red car, which I have parked just outside the flat. I live on the first floor, which is not accessible for me as a wheelchair user. But I am not one – I am many. To be specific, I come with three different bodies: with my access tools – my wheelchair and crutches – and without. I take them everywhere with me and have them close-by, so I can change how I want to or need to move depending on the circumstance.
Am I a luxury crip? Yes. No. Maybe! I am who I am. I work with what I’ve got while being aware of privilege and systematic structures of oppression and hierarchy in society.
What is important for me is not to make any assumptions. About myselves, about yourselves and other people. When unsure on how to speak to me, ask. If you want to talk or write about me or anything I said/wrote, please use the term disabled – it is not a bad word, but a part of me. In fact, I prefer the term dis_abled or dis*abled. Rather than reading the dichotomies of abled and disabled, I’d like to dive into the spaces inbetween and explore the performative and creative potential dis_ability implies to me. The gap _ or star * within the term therefore is there to challenge assumptions about disability and puts into perspective what it could mean, how you can live and perform dis_ability. According to Alison Kafer, dis_ability not simply is, but happens in relation. For more understanding of the definition of this term have a look into my thesis in german, or contact me.
What life taught me so far, with all my visible and invisible dis_abilities is, that I am constantly changing, not only my disabilities relate to different bodies, but I am relating to myself differently in different circumstances. Because of that, I believe am not one, but many. I don’t carry one, but many slices of identities with me. Which also means that what I’ve just written or believed in to be true today – physically, emotionally, mentally – might be totally different from yesterday or tomorrow. In my dance practice, I wish to offer spaces of honesty and integrity where we can BEe together, respecting ourselves and the constant shifts we encounter, exchange life-hacks and learn new skills, celebrate diversity in an open and sustainable environment. Access is love and I dare to care to dare. Especially for disabled people! If you’ve got questions about my current artistic and academic projects, want to collaborate with me or have any other inquiry, please drop me an E-Mail.
With love always,