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Audience Location:

Burtscheid spa park (“Kurpark”), near the “Café Kurpark Terrassen”, in between the Rosenquelle and the Kurpark Terrassen, next to the fountain.

Date and Time:

June 24, 2017 at 17:00 CEST

Water Locale:

Fountain in spa park of Burtscheid (today part of Aachen, Germany)



Sophie Berg
Long time experience in classical and contemporary training, participated in performances at several theatres in Germany. Studied for PDDS/M.A. in Dance Studies at the Laban Centre for Movement and Dance, London. Advanced vocational training in Dance Movement Therapy.

History of Site and Related Water Issues:

Burtscheid was mentioned for the first time in 1018, but was previously a settlement used by Celts and Romans. In 1338, Burtscheid was granted city rights and was an independent city until 1897, and as of 1816 the administrative seat of the Aachen County. On April 1, 1897 Burtscheid was finally part of a district of Aachen.
Burtscheid owes its origin and later economic and social development mainly to its more than 20 springs of thermal springs.
Already the Celts settled in this area along one of the sources of the river “Wurm” and gave the stream probably as a derivation of the word “warm” its current name, since through the influence of the thermal springs the water is relatively warm. As a useful source of water, the Celts used a slightly higher source in the nearby town center with cool and clear water, which is now regarded as the actual source of the river “Wurm”.
Since the times of the Celts, Burtscheid has been a major source of thermal springs, of which more than 25 are more or less productive in Burtscheid territory, with the Landesbad Quelle as the hottest thermal spa in Central Europe with almost 74 degrees. The outlet temperature of the water is between 50 and 70 degrees (Celsius) at most sources.
In the area of today’s Burtscheid market, Roman thermal facilities and medical cutlery from the Roman period were found, which points to the settlement as a spa and health resort. To ensure that the valuable drinking water from the Aachen forest, which flows off in the Burtscheider valley in the direction of Aachen, is not polluted by the salty thermal waters and thus becomes unusable for the water supply, the Romans moved the springs to the river “Wurm”.
In the area of the springs a number of very luxurious spa houses were built. For those patients who were dependent on charitable support, the association was founded in 1835 to support unskilled foreigners in need of bathing at the mineral springs at Burtscheid.
When the spa and bathing facilities experienced a strong inflow, new spa facilities were built as well as new hospitals, and Burtscheid developed thanks to its hot springs to the spa resort, which has been recognized to date, mainly for disorders of the rheumatic form.
In addition, well-kept parks such as the Kurpark Burtscheid, the Ferberpark Burtscheid and the nearby Aachen forest ensure a pleasant and healing air climate.
Excerpts of Wikipedia article on Burtscheid downloaded on 19/06/2017
The Burtscheider Kurpark is the oldest park in the area and has been modified in its size and use several times over the course of time. Up to the middle of the 20th century more than 15 artesian thermal springs were built up within the spa park.
In the spa park are now some old, protected trees, among other things a Ginkgo of 1823.
Today, by pumping out the spring water, the water level of the smaller springs is far below that they usually are. In order to ensure the water supply of the downstream settlement with fresh water, a part of the brook was already artificially laid above the thermal springs. Until the 19th century, only a narrow earth dam separated the then openly flowing waters. The two water courses and the thermal springs became the decisive design element of the spa park.
A fundamental new concept for the design of the entire Burtscheider spa facilities was decided on 26 October 1961.A new version of the Rosenquelle, which is now located in a technical operating space below the lawn area, keeps the source water level in the area of the Dammstraße at a level that is safe for the surrounding buildings.
At present, consideration is being given to whether a short stretch of water can be included in the future development of the spa park. A new spring house of the Rosenquelle was erected in 2013 – thanks to a donation. Here one can experience the thermal water.
Excerpts of Wikipedia article on Burtscheid downloaded on 19/06/2017


The music will be an electronic sound collage and it will be reflecting the local water issues. It was created and arranged by “Better than Botox” :

The Performance:

Adults and primary school children will be performing in the Global Water Dance.

  1. Scene: Procession (with simple Djembe beat)
  2. Water Ritual at the Fountain
  3. Local part – using images of
    • water plants and fish
    • plastic pollution in the oceans
    • pollution of water through pesticides and liquid manure on the one hand – which makes us sick
    • the waters of the thermal spa on the other hand – which can heal people
  4. Global Dance
  5. Audience participation section.


Environmental Impact:

The topics related to the local as well the global part have been integrated into the school lessons for the participating pupils as well as having been discussed with these children and their parents.
The choreographer and dance pedagogue has already observed a change in awareness, e.g. the children are no longer using plastic bottles for their drinking water or plastic bags. They have switched to reusable alternatives!
There will be an information table on water issues. A speaker is on request. There will possibly be petitions to sign and donations to be made to a water cause.

Directions to the Site of Performance:

From Aachen – central station you can walk to Dammstr. and then into the spa park (“Kurpark”). The performance will be near the café “Kurpark Terassen”, in the area near to the Rosenquelle and around the fountain.

Email for more information:

Local Website:

A facebook-page will probably be set up after the event, to provide more information and links to the mentioned and related topics.

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