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Award for German-Israeli cooperation

The University of Freiburg/ Theater Freiburg academic dance project “Störung/הפרעה” Receives Shimon Peres Prize

Freiburg, Oct 11, 2017

Representing the academic dance project “Störung/הפרעה (Disturbance/Hafraah), artists Yasmeen Godder from Tel Aviv, Israel, and Monica Gillette of Freiburg have accepted the first annual Shimon Peres Prize, awarded by the German foreign ministry.


The long-term project was conceived and organized by the University of Freiburg excellence cluster BrainLinks-BrainTools and Theater Freiburg, together with the Yasmeen Godder Company in Tel Aviv and six neuroscientific institutes in Israel. In 2015 the project involved more than 60 dancers, researchers, and patients suffering from Parkinson's disease. The dance workshops, conferences, and discussions focused on movement and impairment to movement. This trans-disciplinary events made it possible to develop and discuss new perspectives on this complex topic.

The university was represented in “Störung/הפרעה” by the philosophy lecturer, PD Dr. Oliver Müller. He and his team have been working out neuroscientific themes with artists in the Reaching Out project conducted within the BrainLinks-BrainTools excellence cluster since 2013, using new stage formats and participatory projects to gain insights into brain research and to promote ethical debate.

The prizewinners Godder and Gillette were responsible for the artistic coordination of Störung/הפרעה. The award, which comes with 10,000 euros in prize money, commemorates former Israeli leader Shimon Peres and is a reminder of the special friendship between the two countries. It is to be given each year to German and Israeli specialists and managers who have given special service in the cause of German-Israeli relations. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel presented the prize on October 10 at the Jewish Museum Berlin.

The final theme congresses in Tel Aviv and Freiburg presented new formats to a wide public audience for dialogue between the different approaches of all the partners involved. Their presentations included “Common Emotions,” a choreographic work by Godder, inspired by the dance elements in the processing of the impairment theme during the project. A video documentary followed the project through the year 2015, which was also the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between Germany and Israel.

Störung/Hafraah was sponsored by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes, the Stiftung Deutsch-Israelisches Zukunftsforum and the German Research Foundation.


Report by Auswärtiges Amts on the Shimon-Peres-Preis:

Project blog:



Dr. Oliver Müller
Excellence cluster BrainLinks-BrainTools
University of Freiburg
Phone: 0761/270-9502
E-Mail: oliver.mü