Teresa Vittucci frees the figure of Mary from her attributes and ambivalences, showing her as an icon, a slave and a heroine, setting the stage for future feminism.
Summary of the Jury of the Schweizer Kulturpreis (Swiss Culture Award)
Vittucci questions fixed characteristics without lecturing or acting as a missionary. She does so with intelligent humour, without self-destruction.
Katja Zellweger, Die Wochenzeitung, 16/2020
A funny dance and lecture performance. (…) Vittucci fights against patriarchy with a positive perception of the body, with anger but also with laughter.
Cornelia Fiedler, Theater heute, 7–8/2021
Teresa Vittucci is one of the freshest phenomena of the European dance in recent years. The young Austrian, based in Switzerland, not only breaks down strict beauty norms, but also expands the forms of contemporary dance in her original creations with overlaps to singing and stand-up. With a great deal of self-irony and pop culture quotes, she explores the image of women in today's society.
This is no different in her award-winning performance Hate Me, Tender, in which she focuses on the figure of the Virgin Mary – the ideal of the compassionate woman and devoted mother – and the cult of virginity that still shapes our society today. What power structures are associated with the loss of virginity? What was it actually like with the conception of Jesus Christ? And is what we have been taught about the hymen really true? Vittucci only needs forty minutes full of associative images and anecdotes to challenge the assumptions surrounding the most famous virgin in history and create a new, queer/feminist image of her in Hate Me, Tender – awarded the Swiss Culture Award.
Teresa Vittucci has also worked with Michal Turinsky in the past, whose Precarious Moves production was one of the highlights of last year's Flora. Vittucci will present Hate Me, Tender for the first time in the Czech Republic during the 26th edition of the festival.
concept and performance Teresa Vittucci
dramaturgical advice Benjamin Egger, Veza Maria Fernandez, Rafal Pierzynski
scenography Jasmin Wiesli, Teresa Vittucci
production manager Kira Koplin groundworkers
production OH DEAR Zürich
co–production Tanzhaus Zürich, Theaterspektakel Zürich
Guest performance is supported by Pro Helvetia (Swiss Arts Council).
The dancer and choreographer Teresa Vittucci (1985) was born in Vienna but is currently based in Zurich. She moves across the fields of performance, contemporary dance, film and stand-up comedy. Through her mostly solo productions she explores feminist and queer perspectives on pop culture, history and other cultural phenomena. Her work combines intelligent provocation with an acute dose of radicalism, forcing the viewer to think about not only each image, but society in general.
She studied at the Vienna Conservatory, The Ailey School in New York and the Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance (SEAD). She holds a Master's degree in Expanded Theater from the Bern University of the Arts. Since 2013, she has been working mostly on her own solo projects, but has also collaborated with a number of renowned artists and dance institutions. Together with Claire Vivianne Sobottke and Michael Turinsky (whose solo Precarious Moves was presented at last year's Flora), she co-created the performance We Bodies (2019), in which they confront the supposed monstrosity of their own bodies.
She has shown her projects at festivals and venues across the entire Europe. Her work to date as a performer has won the 2018 Zurich City Prize and with her solo Hate Me, Tender (2019) she received the prestigious Schweizer Kulturpreis (Swiss Culture Award). Since 2019, she has been active in the Young Artists Association (YAA!) affiliated to Tanzhaus Zürich.
Interview with Teresa Vittucci and the Schweizer Kulturpreis jury statement
photo Yoshiko Kusano