Anita Berber

Anita Berber was a living legend, icon of self-destructive life during the desperate years from 1918 to 1923, and one star of the cabarets. She was like embodying jazz, definitely not in the musical way. But in her being. Actually the dancer came from a middle-class family and had enjoyed the dance training of a higher daughter.

Her tribute as a brave new woman

Afterwards, however, she put on a tuxedo and danced Shimmy in the cabaret Nelson Theater. And she went on to expressionist Free dance in the Weisse Maus. She was openly bisexual. And her nude dances appeared particularly vicious due to skilfully depraved movements full of suggestive gestures.

At that time, it was common in podium dance for the dancers to choose the themes for their performances themselves. Such as Valeska Gert she was working on very urgent social matters, but in in a sexualized way.

By dancing ecstasy, syphilis or inflation, she broke taboos and provoked scandals. She made the fears and desires of her generation visible.

For that reason he took her performances very seriously. Actually, they affected everyone. But the audience was rather looking for entertainment. The Berber herself was not for sale, which further fueled her eccentric reputation. She also defended her art and her freedom with hands and feet. In the truest sense of the word. „Long live the cheeky person!“

Anita Berber representing her generation

She belonged to the first generation of the 20th century. These young people dared to stand up against their parents. They fought rigid obedience in order to be entitled to follow their own ideas of living. They were the Avantgarde. Anita Berber, as many of them, fell victim to morphine in 1928. She was 29 years old. (cf. Fischer, Lothar, Anita Berber, Ein getanztes Leben, Berlin 2014, S. 165)

In general the atmosphere rather was marked by alcohol and cocaine.

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Anita Berber, Epitome of 1920s Weimar Republic Excess

See also: KIND OF GOLDEN – Friedrichstadt