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Information

1973 to 1987

member of the Tanztheater Wuppertal

from 1994

guest dancer of the Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch


Biography

Josephine Ann Endicott

was born in Sydney, Australia, in 1950. When she started taking ballet lessons at the age of seven, her father – a pharmaceuticals sales rep – announced drily, “Too dear”. It was Jo Ann’s mother who did her utmost to nurture her daughter’s love of dance, because she herself had grown up with three sisters who were mad about dancing. It didn’t take long for Jo Ann’s teachers to recognise her talent, and she was sent for professional ballet training at the Australian Ballet School in Melbourne. In 1967 she joined Australian Ballet’s corps de ballet, where she met famous ballerinas of the day who were invited to perform with them, including Margot Fonteyn, Carla Fracci and Maya Plisetskaya. She got to work with great choreographers such as Anthony Tudor, Frederick Ashton, Paul Taylor, Leonide Massine and Rudolf Nurejew, who made the greatest impression on her. However, her position in the company was precarious. She did not conform to the contemporary ideal of a ballerina – her face was considered too round, her body too feminine, her personality not suited. Nureyev advised her to go to Europe.

From London to Wuppertal

Endicott went to London in 1972, where Pina Bausch discovered her – more or less by chance – a year later, and immediately signed her up for the new Tanztheater Wuppertal. The young Australian was a perfect fit. Pina Bausch’s newly formed ensemble did not pander to the standardised models of ballet, wanting instead to show people “as they really are” – tall or short, plump or slight. The idea of the ensemble was to gather as many different characters as possible, each of whom should be seen as a unique individual. With her unpretentious personality and direct manner, Jo Ann Endicott fitted right in. And she had the makings of a protagonist. The Australian’s break-through came when Pina Bausch cast her in the leading role of Anna I in the Brecht–Weill double bill The Seven Deadly Sins in 1976. From then on, through the early years of Tanztheater Wuppertal, Endicott became the public face and the best ad for the company. She threw herself unreservedly into every role, whether in Come Dance With Me, Renate wandert aus (Renate emigrates), the Macbeth project, Kontakthof, Arien, Keuschheitslegende (Legend of Chastity) or Walzer. Not only was Pina Bausch’s language of movement practically made for her, Endicott could also act, laugh, shriek, wail, rant, even belch on command. She could portray a dreamy girl as convincingly as a screeching nag, act the playful comedian as well as the haughty lady at a dinner party. Above all, her emotional intensity lent each piece great credibility. Jo Ann Endicott had the ability to give her all on stage. She didn’t pretend to be someone – she became the person she was playing.

Change of scene

In 1987, emotionally drained, she took a break from Tanztheater Wuppertal and did not return until 1994, initially as a guest artist. She had already begun to collaborate with theatre directors – with Hansgünther Heyme in 1979, then with Peter Palitzsch (1991) and Wolf Seesemann (1995) – and she considered this very important for her artistic development. She published two books about her work with Pina Bausch: Ich bin eine anständige Frau (“A respectable woman”) in 1999, and Warten auf Pina (“Waiting for Pina”) in 2009. Back with Tanztheater Wuppertal, she began to work more and more as rehearsal director and on ensuring that the pieces were passed on to the next generation.
Her restagings of Kontakthof. With Ladies and Gentlemen over 65 with Beatrice Libonati (1999/2000) and Kontakthof. With Teenagers over 14 with Bénédicte Billiet (2009/2010) were major successes. From 2007 to 2015 Endicott became a full-time employee of Tanztheater Wuppertal again and was responsible for several international restagings of Pina Bausch pieces, including The Rite of Spring and Orpheus und Eurydike at the Paris Opera. In 2020, she restaged The Rite of Spring with an ensemble of dancers from various African countries, produced in École des Sables, Senegal.
Among other awards for her work, Endicott was conferred with the honour of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2008, and Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2012. As one of the original members of Pina Bausch’s company, Endicott particularly enjoys the opportunity that each restaging presents to train new, junior colleagues as the assistants and rehearsal directors of the future.

Text by Norbert Servos
Translated by Rachel McNicholl


Gallery


Premieres

season 1973/74

PieceIphigenie auf Tauris
Date21 April 1974
VenueOpernhaus Wuppertal
Wuppertal
Germany
DanceBarbara Passow-Diekamp

Priestresses, Scythians

Barry Wilkinson

Clytemnestras, Guard, Scythians

Colleen Finneran-Meessmann

Oracle, Priestresses

Dominique Mercy

Orest

Ed Kortlandt

Pylades

Hans Pop

Agamemnon, Guard, Scythians

Hiltrud Blanck

Priestresses, Scythians

Jan Minařík

Clytemnestras, Thoas

Josephine Ann Endicott

Clytemnestra, Priestresses, Scythians

Lajos Horvath

Clytemnestras, Oracle

Malou Airaudo

Iphigenie

Margaret Huggenberger

Priestresses, Scythians

Marlis Alt

Priestresses

Matthias Schmidt

Clytemnestras, Guard, Scythians

Monika Wacker

Priestresses, Scythians

Stephanie Macoun

Priestresses

Sue Cooper

Priestresses, Scythians

Vivienne Newport

Priestresses, Scythians

Yolanda Meier

Electra, Priestresses, Scythians

SingerBozena Kinasz

Iphigenie

Elena Bajew

Diana

Hartmut Bauer

Thoas

Heikki Siukola

Orest

Klaus Kettenbach

A manservant

Luigi Lega

Pylades

ChoirJiri Kubica
Werner Wilke
StagehandPaul Aron
LightingHans-Joachim Deinert
Make-upHeinz Dildey
SoundHorst Kersten
SouffleuseGertrud Bürkle
Technical directionRolf Bachmann
Stage managerHerbert Görsch
Source of castEvening leaflet for “Iphigenie auf Tauris” by Pina Bausch in in Wuppertal, season 1973/74
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season 1973/74

PieceZwei Krawatten
Date31 May 1974
VenueOpernhaus Wuppertal
Wuppertal
Germany
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season 1974/75

season 1974/75

season 1975/76

season 1975/76

season 1975/76

season 1975/76

PieceThe Seven Deadly Sins
Date15 June 1976
VenueOpernhaus Wuppertal
Wuppertal
Germany
Costume assistantOrtrud Himmelreich
MusikassistenzLothar Knepper
DanceBarbara Passow-Diekamp

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Barry Wilkinson

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Colleen Finneran-Meessmann

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Ed Kortlandt

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Elisabeth Clarke

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Esco Edmondson

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Fernando Cortizo

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Hans Pop

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Heinz Samm

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Hiltrud Blanck

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Jan Minařík

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Josephine Ann Endicott

Anna II, Don't Be Afraid

Lajos Horvath

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Laszlo Fenyves

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Margaret Huggenberger

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Marlis Alt

Don't Be Afraid

Michael Diekamp

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Monika Sagon

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Monika Wacker

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Pedro José Mascarello Bisch

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Stephanie Macoun

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Sue Cooper

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Tjitske Broersma

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Vivienne Newport

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

Yolanda Meier

Deadly Sins, Don't Be Afraid

ActorMechthild Großmann

Don't Be Afraid

SingerAnn Höling

Anna I, Don't Be Afraid

Erich Leukert

Don't Be Afraid

Karin Rasenack

Don't Be Afraid

Oskar Pürgstaller

The Family

Siegfried Schmidt

The Family

Willi Nett

The Family

Zsolt Ketszery

The Family

StagehandHelmut Kühne
LightingHans-Joachim Deinert
Make-upHeinz Dildey
SoundHorst Kersten
SouffleuseElse Hildesheim
BallettkorrepetitionWerner Precht
Technical directionRolf Bachmann
Workshop managementLeo Haase
Stage managerHerbert Görsch
Tour managementHans-Dieter Klos
PropsGünther Fränzel
Source of castEvening leaflet for “The Seven Deadly Sins” by Pina Bausch with Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal in in Wuppertal, June 15, 1976
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season 1976/77

season 1977/78

season 1977/78

season 1978/79

season 1978/79

season 1979/80

season 1979/80

season 1981/82

season 1983/84

season 1984/85

season 1986/87

season 1997/98


From the archives
Josephine Ann Endicott

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