She She Pop

50 Grades of Shame

A picture album inspired by Wedekind’s spring awakening 



105 min.

After the successful performances at HAU Hebbel am Ufer last October, She She Pop are now again showing their picture album inspired by Wedekind’s “Spring Awakening” and E.L. James’ erotic novel “50 Shades of Grey” with guests from the Berlin dance, performance and theatre scene. Based on Wedekind’s utopian models of education, the stage here serves as an educational institution and She She Pop and their guests form a faculty within it.

On two large panels onto which cross-fade images are projected, the different actors – old and young, children, women and men – are staged in a series of encounters. Through monstrous or simple presentations, and constantly shifting poses, different generations and genders, real bodies and fantastic figments expose. The experienced elderly stand next to innocent youth, or vice versa: no position is secure and nobody has reliable knowledge.

The experience of sex is constantly changing – it is historical, political, biographical, and conditioned by specific contexts. Even the most private declarations about desire, reproduction, gender specificity, and so on, are ideologies; they are smoke and mirrors, banal, dull or fictitious. Imparting knowledge is a form of penetration, just one kind of lewd sex game among many. Yet despite all these doubt and unease, sex education is still necessary. What is sex? What makes a woman a woman? What makes a man a man? What does a child know? The pan-generational teachers in “50 Grades of Shame” rise to this challenge. The performers use their bodies and their accumulated physical shame as visual material.

“50 Grades of Shame” is concerned with creating, viewing, modifying and reinterpreting imagery: images in the form of ideals and norms, images of collective and individual desire, images as concrete examples, and as pornography, caricature and subversive collage. Together with their guests, She She Pop’s performers are working on a new theatrical format. The aim is to abandon the individual limits of the body, age, gender, shame and hard-won sexual identity in order to merge into new, collective image of bodies, live on camera. Each and every one of us is naive despite all our experience, and has to teach others. Each and every one of us can imitate, parody and penetrate the other. The result is an ars erotica for the stage – a fusion of modern sex-education picture book and late medieval dance of death.


Concept: She She Pop / By and with: Gundars Abolinš, Sebastian Bark, Knut Berger, Lilli Biedermann, Jean Chaize, Anna Drexler, Jonas Maria Droste, Johanna Freiburg, Fanni Halmburger, Walter Hess, Christian Löber, Lisa Lucassen, Fee Aviv Marschall, Mieke Matzke, Ilia Papatheodorou, Florian S / Video: Benjamin Krieg / Sets: Sandra Fox / Costumes: Lea Søvsø / Music: Santiago Blaum / Artistic advice: Ruschka Steininger / Dramaturgy: Tarun Kade / Sound Design: Manuel Horstmann / Lights: Michael Lentner / Video Assistance: Philipp Hohenwarter / Technical Tour Support: Florian Fischer, Sven Nichterlein / Production/PR: ehrliche arbeit - freies Kulturbüro / Tour Organization: Tina Ebert / Company Management: Elke Weber / Administration: Aminata Oelßner / Surtitles: Anna Kasten (PANTHEA) / Live Translation: Ellen Gallagher (PANTHEA)


  • Past
    Wed 19.10.2016, 20:00 / HAU1
    Thu 20.10.2016, 20:00 / HAU1
    Fri 21.10.2016, 20:00 / HAU1
    Sat 22.10.2016, 20:00 / HAU1
    Sun 23.10.2016, 17:00 / HAU1
    Thu 5.1.2017, 19:00 / HAU1
    Fri 6.1.2017, 19:00 / HAU1
    Thu 11.5.2017, 20:00 / HAU1
    Fri 12.5.2017, 19:00 / HAU1
    Sat 13.5.2017, 19:00 / HAU1
    Sat 7.4.2018, 19:00 / HAU1
    Sun 8.4.2018, 19:00 / HAU1
    Mon 9.4.2018, 19:00 / HAU1


Production: She She Pop and Münchner Kammerspiele. Coproduction: HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Kampnagel Hamburg, FFT Düsseldorf, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt a.M. and Kyoto Experiment.

Funded by Senate Department for Culture and Europe. Supported within the framework of the Alliance of International Production Houses by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and Europe.

[Translate to EN:]
[Translate to EN:]
[Translate to EN:]


Stresemannstr. 29, 10963 Berlin

There are two marked parking spots in front of the building. Access to the Parkett by means of a separate entrance with lift when necessary. Barrier-free restroom facilities are available. Wheelchair users are kindly requested to register their attendance at least one day before the performance. Thank you for your understanding. If you need help, please contact our Ticketing & Service team at +49 (0)30 259004-27 or send us an email to

HAU3000 / Positions, Projects, Publications

The Glowing Room

Text by Hendrik Otremba.

An Introduction to “Collectivize Facebook”

By Jonas Staal

“Collectivize Facebook” is a lawsuit aimed to turn Facebook into public property, initiated by artist Jonas Staal and lawyer Jan Fermon. Read here Staal’s introduction to the project.

“Manifestos for Queer Futures”

Video Documentation

As part of the festival “The Present Is Not Enough – Performing Queer Histories and Futures”, HAU initiated an open call for artists based in Berlin, who were invited to submit proposals for their Manifestos for Queer Futures.