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Recording: 2020-01-13 , Tanztage Berlin 2020 | Sophiensæle (Video © Walter Bickmann)

Suvi Kemppainen, Josefine Mühle

A Child Has Been Beaten

Tanztage Berlin 2020 | Sophiensæle

Production Details / Press Releases

IN A CHILD HAS BEEN BEATEN two bodies accompany each other on an insistent and monstrous path in a shared space of becoming a body that has lost its function. The piece identifies masochism as an autonomous phenomena and agency. Based on their individual and shared desires, Kemppainen and Mühle zoom into the impact of normative structures in their personal histories offering a poesis of solitude and companionship. The viewers are invited to work with their responsibility as spectators, with matters of intimacy and dark joyous satisfactions.

A CHILD HAS BEEN BEATEN is a part of Kemppainen & Mühles broader research Visions of Masochism which takes space for the phenomena of masochism as a subversive force for action. The title of the piece references Siegmund Freud’s essay A Child is Being Beaten (1919) that is historically placed as a contribution to the study of the origin of sexual perversions. Through appropriating Freud’s writing the artists reclaim dominant male supremacy notions of masochism in approaching them beyond the binary of submission and dominance. They offer movements of desire by poking the heteronormative contract and finding a molecular level of sensitivities that could exist.

SUVI KEMPPAINEN is choreographer and performer from Finland based in Berlin. Her artistic practice is anchored in the physical body and is situated in non-bodily textures through intersectional feminist queer theory. Most recently Suvi’́s work has centered around hope, heartbreak and institutional consent. Through conceptualizing the unforeseeable she is asking how can the stage be a space of solidarity and allyship? After graduating as a dancer in Finland from North Karelia College Outokumpu she continued her studies at the HZT Berlin. Amongst others, she has worked with and for artists such Elina Pirinen in Personal Symphonic Moment (2015 in Moving in November Helsinki / Impulstanz Vienna) in Concerto under Waterlilies (2016 in Kiasma Theatre Helsinki) and in Brume de Mer (2018 at MDT Stockholm), and with Miriam Kongstad in Worker’s Choice (2017 Tanztage Berlin) and Przemek Kaminski in Softspot (2018 Polish Institute in Berlin).

JOSEFINE MÜHLE is a visual and body based artist and lives in Berlin. In her artistic research series What’s in the Dark she develops practices to encounter unconscious movements to deepen physical and psychic sensations and articulations. She is searching for aesthetic manifestations of psychic patterns in multispecies bodies, environments and media and experiments them in interdisciplinary formats, intertwining performance video and installation. After graduating from Theater Studies at Leipzig University and Dance, Context, Choreography program at HZT Berlin, she works as performer and collaborator with artists such as Xenia Taniko (Under the Dome, May 2020 ongoing), Suvi Kemppainen, (Visions of Masochism, September 2019 ongoing), Antoine Carle (Hollow Matters, November 2018), Shannon Cooney (Fielding, November 2017), Boris Nikitin & Lee Méir, (24p/sec, Feb 2020 Basel) amongst others.

[Source: play bill]

TFB Nr. 1412

Cast & Credits

LIGHT, VIDEO, STAGE: Suvi Kemppainen, Josefine Mühle, David Eckelmann
SOUND: Suvi Kemppainen, Josefine Mühle, Fjóla Gautadóttir
THANK YOU: William Wheeler, Sandra Umathum, Sandra Blatterer, Meimei
A production by Suvi Kemppainen + Josefine Mühle in co-production with SOPHIENSÆLE.

MANAGEMENT: Johanna Withelm
DRAMATURGICAL ADVICE: Alexandra Hennig, Isabel Gatzke
The Tanztage Berlin are produced by SOPHIENSÆLE.
Funded by Senate Chancellery for Culture and Europe.
Supported by Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan Bangalore, mapping dance und Tanzfabrik Berlin e.V.


Sophienstraße 18
10178 Berlin

Tickets: (030) 283 52 66

Video Documentation

The video documentation is produced on behalf of the Senate Department for Culture and Europe. The purpose of this contract is to document productions in the field of contemporary dance in Berlin. The master recordings are archived by the University Library of the Berlin University of Arts. Copies of the recordings on DVD are available for viewing exclusively in the reference collections of the following archives (at media desks in these institutions):

University Library of the Berlin University of Arts
Mediathek für Tanz und Theater des Internationalen Theaterinstituts / Mime Centrum Berlin
Inter-University Centre for Dance Berlin (HZT)

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