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Das Totale Tanz Theater

Berlin, Germany

Das Totale Tanz Theater - Overview video

A virtual installation celebrating 100 years of Bauhaus

To mark the centenary of the Bauhaus movement, we created Das Totale Tanz Theater (The Total Dance Theatre), an interactive virtual reality installation. Just 100 years ago, artistic research and experimentation on the topic of humans and machines were first undertaken during stage workshops at the historic Bauhaus. Inspired by Oskar Schlemmer’s stage experiments and Walter Gropius’ ideas of a Total Theater, an interdisciplinary team created a virtual world that invites visitors to interact with digital dancing figures.

Marionette in motion.

The stage of the experience.
Closeup of a dancer.

Discover Bauhaus geniality with new technologies

The core aspect of the experience was to bring back the geniality of Bauhaus but merge it with modern technologies. Equipped with VR goggles and a controller, visitors embark on a journey through multiple levels of a vast, virtual stage space. For fifteen minutes the relationship between humans and machines is experienced in a completely new way by means of dynamic joint dance in digital dimensions.

Sketching and creating the initial scenography and costumes

As always we started out with hand drawings and a 3D paper model. We created over 120 very small sketches for the costumes in order to determine the right balance between old and new, between digital and analogue. For the creation of the scenography, we aimed for a 620 metres high stage drawing inspiration from Tatlin’s Tower which was designed but never built for the Third International (1919 - 1920). The dancers travel upwards through a complex system of elevators.

Concept art for the architecture.
Initial drawings of the costumes.
The four costumes: Ambulant Architecture, Dematerialization, Marionette and Technical Organism.
  • Choreography Act 2.
  • Details of the dance.
  • Marionettes gathering to the center.
  • The four dancers in motion.

A Spectacular dance experienced in a virtual reality journey

Over the course of the first act, movements are playful and the user engages in an interactive solo, roaming across the stage with his dancer. During the second act, the atmosphere changes and the user will be blocked and pushed around until the journey continues onwards into a grand finale.

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Platform moving along the tower.
Ambulant Architecture marionette.
To the final act.

Costume design inspired by Oskar Schlemmer’s archetypes

The design of the costumes was crucial for the overall project since each costume is based on one of Oskar Schlemmer’s archetypes: Architecture, Dematerialisation, the Marionette and the Technical Organism. A complex physics system embedded in the costumes let the costumes react to even the smallest movements.

Paying attention to every detail

Their bodies were scanned and applied onto 3D models

Dancers with markers glued on.

Shooting the choreography and creating the digital dancers

We worked with renowned Choreographer Richard Siegal and his team of talented dancers who wear specifically casted costumes of Schlemmer’s archetypes and “fitted” with the digital pendant during the actual shooting. Paying attention to every detail, their bodies were scanned and applied onto 3D models. Over the course of a three week mobcap shooting, we created an archive of 800 single movements which served as the basis for the programming of the interactive choreography.

Dancers testing their digital costumes in a motion capture studio.




Idea & Story

  • Diana Schniedermeier
  • Maya Puig

Lead Vr Creators

  • Maya Puig
  • Patrik De Jong
  • Dirk Hoffmann

Lead Technologist

  • Torsten Sperling
  • Sebastian Hein

Executive Producer

  • Diana Schniedermeier


  • Richard Siegal


  • Lorenzo Bianchi-Hoesch


  • Askia Kress
  • Michael Grotenhoff


  • Blixa Bargeld

Creative Producer

  • Maya Puig


  • Dirk Hoffmann
  • Nico Alexander Taniyama


  • Dirk Hoffmann
  • Patrick De Jong

Art Director

  • Dirk Hoffmann
  • Nico Alexander Taniyama
  • Robert Werner

3d Artist Lead

  • Nico Alexander Taniyama

3d Artist

  • Dana Würzburg
  • Christian Rambow

Choreography Programming

  • Torsten Sperling


  • Dennis Timmerman
  • Hui-Yuan Tien

Sound Design

  • Victor Audouze

Installation Architecture

  • Unit Berlin

Motion Capture Facilitators

  • Mimic Productions

Project Management

  • Thorsten Schwarck
  • Jochen Watral
  • Kristin Sperling


  • Margarida Neto
  • Claudia Ortiz
  • Arraiza Corey
  • Scott-Gilbert
  • Diego Tortelli

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