Photographs: Doris Uhlich, Melancholic Ground, 2023. Press photos. Courtesy of the artist © Alexi Pelekanos, Karolina Miernik 

melancholic ground

A ship, a castle, a car and a horse. For us as children, the playground is a small world all of our own. Designed for sheer fun, for physical exercise and as a stage-set for vivid fantasies, the playground infrastructure in melancholic ground goes beyond its usual function. Fourteen performers of different generations cavort on the rocking horse and the slide; their movements are executed extremely slowly, in a halting flow; or, dressed in plush costumes, they offer themselves as toys for the others to play on. For her new work, Doris Uhlich, one of Austria’s most acclaimed choreographers internationally, explores the feeling of melancholy. Rather than leading to isolation, melancholic ground allows this state to be experienced collectively. In the absurd Disneyland laid out between climbing frames and sand pits, subtle resistance is offered against the dictates of productivity and the standardisation of bodies.


Concept, Choreography
Doris Uhlich

Hugo Le Brigand, Pêdra Costa, Adil Embaby, Ann Muller, Andrius Mulokas, Moravia Naranjo, Mzamo Nondlwana, Gabriele Oßwald, Karin Pauer, Thomas Richter, Vera Rosner, Virginie Roy, Wolfgang Sautermeister, Valentino Skarwan, Grete Smitaite, Haha Wang

Spatial interventions
Juliette Collas
Marco Tölzer

Katharina Heistinger

Costume consultation
Ann Muller

DJ, Sound
Boris Kopeinig

Dramaturgical Feedback
Adam Czirak

Social Media
Esther Brandl

Production management
Margot Wehinger, Helen Parkes

Company management
Margot Wehinger

Wiener Festwochen
insert Tanz und Performance GmbH

Funded by the Cultural Department of the City of Vienna and the Federal Ministry Republic of Austria, Arts, Culture, Civil Service and Sport