Marco Goecke gets a new chance in Basel after a dog poop attack

Controversial choreographer
After a dog feces attack: Marco Goecke gets a new chance in Basel

Marco Goecke, then designated ballet director of the Hanover State Opera, stands in the foyer of the State Opera.

© Christophe Gateau/dpa/Archive

Marco Goecke is a multi-award-winning artist. Because of a conflict with a critic, he had to resign as ballet director in Hanover. Now he wants to continue his career in Switzerland.

The German choreographer Marco Goecke will be head of ballet at the Theater Basel in Switzerland from summer 2025. “He is an exceptional artist who deserves a second chance,” said theater director Benedikt von Peter, referring to Goecke’s dog poop attack in February last year.

At the time, Goecke had smeared a journalist with feces. He had previously accused her of always writing “bad, personal” reviews. A few days later, Goecke’s contract as ballet director at the Hanover State Opera was terminated by mutual agreement. From 2025, Goyo Montero will direct the ballet in Hanover.

Marco Goecke is “grateful and humble”

“That was the biggest mistake in my life and it’s not easy to excuse,” Goecke said in a press conference on Wednesday. He apologized to the theater critic and everyone else he hurt. He was in a state of emergency and a low at the time, but that in no way justified the incident. “I am grateful and humbled that I was given this opportunity,” he said about his commitment in Basel.

Goecke was introduced on Wednesday in Basel as a world-famous and award-winning choreographer who has created his own dance style. “I look forward to working with this extraordinary artist and his team,” said von Peter.

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