DANCE!CRITICISM! On Critics, Pundits and Connoisseurs

New exhibition in the Dance Museum of the Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln | Duration: March 23, 2019 - January 26, 2020 | Opening: Friday, March 22 at 7pm

Rolf Hiller and members of the "Hiller-Girls" dance company studying the latest dance reviews. 1920s, Courtesy: Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln

Admired? Despised? Respected? The journalistic and literary genre of dance criticism, the critical observation of dance, is controversial both with artists and the audience. The same applies to the critics and their descriptions, observations, interpretations and assessments of dance which appear in newspapers, in journals, or on the internet.

Apart from their work on current events, critics also write dance history, tell stories about the past and present of dance, and occasionally even give their love of dance a literary shine.

View into the exhibition. Photo: © Janet Sinica

Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln is the only archive to comprehensively document press accounts of dance in Germany since the 1950s. With its own press clipping collection, it has amassed over the years more than 600,000 clippings on dance. In addition, it has been the recipient of more than 20 estates and collections of representatives of dance criticism. These include “critical pundits” such as Horst Koegler, “journalists” such as Max Niehaus, “dance scholars” such as Fritz Böhme as well as the “arts columnist” Leonie Dotzler, one of the few known female critics in the 1920s.  This illustrious circle must also include Kurt Peters, editor of the journal “Das Tanzarchiv” and founder of Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln. 

With its 2019/20 annual exhibition, the Dance Museum of Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln pays tribute to dance criticism and its practitioners. The exhibition is accompanied by a supporting programme that will include talks by contemporary dance and ballet critics and discussions of the current state of dance criticism.

Installation (Detail). Photo: © Janet Sinica

Dance Museum of the Deutsches Tanzarchiv Köln, Im Mediapark 7 (3rd floor), 50670 Köln
Tel.: +49 221) 888 95 -400 or -444 (exhibition counter), E-Mail: tanzarchiv( at ),

Directions and parking

open daily from 2 to 7pm except Wednesdays | closed on Good Friday, April, 19.

Admission: €5.50 (reduced €3), free the first Monday of the month! Regular guided tours: Every Sunday at 3pm, cost: regular admission + €2 for the tour