This is us. Creative visionaries who work together to create successful strategies and funding programmes in the fields of art, culture and education.
Laura Böttinger studied classical dance at the MUK Music and Art Private University Vienna. She then worked as a production assistant and as a freelance dancer with choreographers including Jochen Roller, Yuki Kihara and Kadir Amigo Memis. She has been working at Bureau Ritter since 2016: initially as a production assistant and then as production manager of the Dance On Ensemble between 2016 to 2018, then as production manager of the Dance On Ensemble and since 2018 as artistic director of the Dance On Lab and the creative learning programme Dance On Participation. She is on the selection committee of the Federal Cultural Foundation’s Tanzland funding programme.
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Ty Boomershine studied dance in Ohio and Missouri. In addition to dancing with various artists and companies, including Lucinda Childs, Emio Greco | PC, LeineRoebana, Dan Wagoner, Gus Solomons Jr., Bill T. Jones, Ton Simons and the Merce Cunningham Repertory Ensemble, he has also performed in pieces by Dancenoise and Giulia Mureddu. He danced in Robert Wilsons’ “Einstein on the Beach” and has been Lucinda Child’s Artistic Assistant, as well as rehearsal director for the ICKamsterdam. Ty Boomershine joined the Dance On Ensemble in 2015 and became its Artistic Director in 2019.
Lisa Marie Bowler is a London-based translator, editor, writer and dramaturg with a background in dance. She worked at Sadler’s Wells for several years before completing her Ph.D. at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich with a thesis on the phenomenology of theatre architecture. As well as writing and translating for artists, publishers, dance companies and arts organisations all over Europe, she has worked with Bureau Ritter since 2016, coordinating the Creative Europe-funded large-scale cooperation project Dance On, Pass On, Dream On.
Claudia Engels studied arts education in Maastricht, ethnology in Berlin and visual anthropology/ethnographic documentary film studies in Manchester. Most recently she has been working as a project manager in Berlin. At the büro für kulturelle angelegenheiten she organised various events around art, education, politics and science from 2013 to 2015, working with clients such as the German Federal Cultural Foundation and the Federal Agency for Civic Education. From 2015 to 2019 she was project coordinator of the pioneering project RomArchive – Digital Archive of the Sinti and Roma. She was responsible for translations, editing and proofreading, working closely with the curators of the archive’s various sections. She joined Bureau Ritter in August 2020 to project manage the recovery programme TANZPAKT RECONNECT.
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Simone Maria Graf studied theatre, dance and art history, graduating with a Magister Artium. After working as a gallery assistant at Galería Hilario Galguera Mexico/Leipzig, she was project manager at PACT Zollverein in Essen from 2013 to 2018, responsible for the residency programme and various interdisciplinary festivals. This was followed by jobs as co-curator and production manager for Forecast Festival 3 at HKW in Berlin, as editor and production manager for the festival Tanz im August, and as editorial manager for the publications of the 11th Berlin Biennale and the 70th anniversary of the Berliner Festspiele in 2021. She also collaborates with various Berlin artists as a freelance artistic producer and dramaturg. Simone Maria Graf joined Bureau Ritter in August 2021 as dramaturg and production manager of the Dance On Ensemble.
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Lewon Hartz studied philosophy and social sciences for several semesters. He worked in a variety of jobs, ran a self-sufficient business on a farm in Brandenburg for two years and eventually became a househusband. In 2018, he started doing administrative work for artists and cultural projects. He worked as a project administrator for the bildungswerk des berufsverbands bildender künstler*innen berlin from 2020 to 2022. In April 2022, he joined Bureau Ritter as a project coordinator for the INS FREIE! funding programme.
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Riccarda Herre completed her dance training at the ballet school of the Hamburg State Opera in 1987. She then worked as a soloist for various companies in Germany and abroad, including CIE Red Notes in Paris, the Volksbühne Berlin and the Tanztheater of the German National Theatre in Weimar. In 2004 she graduated from the Hamburg University of Music and Theatre as a culture and media manager and went on to work as a producer for various dance companies, theatres and festivals, including Tanz im August. During Tanzplan Deutschland she took on the organisation of the first Dance Education Biennale and then became a founding member of Bureau Ritter, where she coordinated the Dance Heritage Fund, among other projects.
In 2014, she developed the idea and concept for the DANCE ON initiative. Since 2017, she has been leading the funding programmes TANZPAKT Stadt-Land-Bund and TANZPAKT RECONNECT alongside Isabel Niederhagen. Both were instrumental in developing and launching the programmes.
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Bastienne Kästner studied applied cultural studies at Leuphana University in Lüneburg. She went on to work on a series of international projects in the arts, including at Kampnagel Laokoon Festival and in the field of community dance. This was followed by several years as a project manager for international degree programmes at the Berlin School of Economics and Law (HWR). In 2014, she took executive responsibility for organisation of a new African-German Master’s degree (a development and education policy project with the German Society for International Partnership (GIZ)) at the HWR. As well as coordinating the course, she managed the project budget and supported the academic director in negotiating the project’s long-term financial future. She joined Bureau Ritter in June 2017 as a finance manager and has since been instrumental in helping the office embrace digital and remote working practices.
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Christian Koch studied German and history. After working as a bookseller and magazine editor, he was appointed administrative director of the Württembergischer Kunstverein Stuttgart in 2006. From 2009 to 2012 he was managing director of PACT Zollverein Essen. From 2012 to 2014, he oversaw the finances of the festival “Pina 40 – 40 Years of Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch” and went on to become managing director of the Pina Bausch Foundation from 2014 to 2016, followed by a period of working for the City of Wuppertal as project manager for the project “Pina Bausch Centre” until 2018. From 2019 to 2021 he directed the Duisburg Film Week and doxs! documentaries for children and young people. Since 2012, he has also held teaching positions in cultural management at the University of Witten/Herdecke and the Folkwang University of the Arts Essen. He joined Bureau Ritter in April 2021, working in financial management and controlling.
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Anastasia Luck studied art history and theatre studies at the FU Berlin and completed her master’s degree in cultural and media management there in 2022. During her studies, she worked as a research assistant at the university’s art history department, among other places. Several internships took her from the Gemäldegalerie in Berlin to the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florence. Most recently, she worked at the Stasi Records Archive (Federal Archive) as a student assistant in the visitor services department. For several years now, she has volunteered as a carer for people with disabilities. She first came to Bureau Ritter as an intern in 2015 and returned in June 2022 as a production assistant.
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After training as a hotel manager, Constanze Lütke worked in various positions in the Berlin hotel industry from 1988 to 2007, most recently as director of the Hotel Berliner Hof, where she was responsible for hotel and project controlling. She then worked as office manager for the health food start-up Gorilla Natürlich Fastfood, building the company’s administration from the ground up. From 2009 to early 2015 she was assistant to the finance director of Veolia Germany, while also managing the commercial arm of the non-profit organisation starke familie e.V. until December 2021. She joined Bureau Ritter for the first time in March 2015 and returned in January 2022 after a two-year break to head up the finance team alongside Christof Müller.
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Rebekka Mauser completed her training as a tax clerk in 2002 and has since worked for various cultural institutions as an administrator and financial controller, including for the International Film Festival Munich and the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart. From 2013 to 2016 she studied cultural management at the Ludwigsburg University of Education. She joined the team of Bureau Ritter in September 2021, working as a project and finance manager for TANZPAKT RECONNECT and TANZPAKT Stadt-Land-Bund.
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Christof Müller studied geography and political sciences. He was subsequently employed as a project manager at the Institut für Europäische Politik and the Centre international de formation européenne, where he was responsible for projects under the Jean-Monnet Programme of the European Commission, DG Education and Culture. From 2009 to 2013 he worked as an independent project and event manager for Internet & Society Collaboratory, Stiftung Menschen für Menschen and Discover Football, among others. From 2013 to 2015 he oversaw the finances of the Tanzfonds Partner and Tanzfonds Erbe funding initiatives, both initiated by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and Bureau Ritter, at sauerbrey | raabe. büro für kulturelle angelegenheiten. From 2015 to 2019 he was responsible for RomArchive’s financial administration and for contractual arrangements and legal matters related to funding. He joined Bureau Ritter as Head of Finance in 2019, a position he now shares with Constanze Lütke.
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Following the completion of her degree in drama, comparative literature and journalism, Isabel Niederhagen joined the Theatre Institute of the Freie Universität Berlin as a research assistant before being appointed as a press officer and dramaturg at the Theater am Halleschen Ufer Berlin. In 2003 she co-founded the PR agency k3 berlin, which counted Tanz im August among its clients. In 2006 she was invited by PACT Zollverein in Essen to project manage the tanzplan essen 2010 initiative. She has been part of Bureau Ritter since 2012, initially responsible for documentation and the digital archive of the Dance Heritage Fund. Together with Riccarda Herre she now leads the funding programmes TANZPAKT Stadt-Land-Bund and TANZPAKT RECONNECT, which she played an important role in developing and bringing to fruition.
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Esther Ningelgen studied Italian Literature and Modern German Literature in Tübingen, Berlin and Verona, where she researched processes of aesthetic perception, transmediality and the construction of identity and gender. After working as a freelance assistant director and project manager, she headed the public relations department of Theater RambaZamba in Berlin from 2011 and also temporarily acted as its deputy executive director. Among other projects, she initiated and led the theatre’s participation in the programme “START – Youth Culture in Greece” by the Robert Bosch Foundation and the Federal Association of Socioculture. From 2015 to 2017, she was co-director of Theater RambaZamba and moved then to Schauspiel Leipzig, where she worked for five years as press spokesperson and head of public relations. She has been part of the team at Bureau Ritter since August 2022, responsible for communications with a specific focus on the Dance on Ensemble.
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Hélène Philippot studied musicology and music management at the Université Paris IV Sorbonne and the Universität der Künste Berlin. From 2008 to 2012 she worked for a range of cultural organisations in France, including the Orchestre National d’Île-de-France, the festival Les Nuits du Mont Rome and the Opéra National de Paris. From 2013 and 2021 she worked for the Berliner Festspiele, including as production manager for international co-productions in the fields of circus and dance, as well as for the festival Jazzfest Berlin. In 2017/2018 she took part in the Festival Production Management Training held by the European Festivals Association. Since 2019, she has been responsible for managing the Swiss choreographer Lea Moro’s company. In February 2021, she completed the professional development course in business administration at the Technical University of Nuremberg. She joined Bureau Ritter in June 2021 as production manager and producer of the Dance On Ensemble.
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Madeline Ritter is a qualified lawyer, arts programmer and curator. She founded tanz performance köln, an international production and performance platform for contemporary dance in 1989 and was its artistic director and managing director until 2004. She has initiated many European networks, been the director of interdisciplinary festivals and produced international co-productions with artists from the fields of dance, new media and performance art. From 1993 to 1998 she was the founding and artistic director of Pictures of (e)Motion, an international festival for dance, film and new media at the Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland in Bonn, and from 2003 to 2008 she curated the dance programme at Theater Heilbronn. In 2004, her proposal for Tanzplan Deutschland was accepted by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and she was appointed as project director to deliver the initiative. Based on this experience, she and Ingo Diehl founded Diehl+Ritter (today Bureau Rtitter) in 2011. With her team she has been developing arts funding programmes ever since, primarily for dance. Madeline Ritter also lectures in cultural management at several European universities, is a certified transformational coach and serves as a member on various committees, among them the supervisory board of Kulturfabrik Kampnagel in Hamburg, the board of trustees of the Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain (until 2023) and the advisory board of the German Dance Archive in Cologne. From 2014 to 2019 she was Deputy Chairperson of the Pina Bausch Foundation and in 2020 she was appointed Chair of its Advisory Board.
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Nina Witte is a qualified marketing communications specialist and has worked for advertising agencies including WAF, Pretzlaw Communications and Runze & Casper. She worked in customer consulting and project management for the rbb’s Fritz radio programme, Diakonisches Werk Berlin-Brandenburg, DGB Berlin-Brandenburg and Stiftung Mercator, and has also project managed trade fairs and major events for the Berliner Sparkasse. From 2013 to 2018 she was the office manager for Culture Form, Büro für strategisches Design, followed by a position as executive assistant at the corporate law firm Arnold Anwälte. She joined Bureau Ritter in August 2021 as our office and finance manager.
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