Judith State – Ember

Judith State – Ember

In the frame of the Creative Crossroad activity, Judith State was selected by 4 Culture to receive a 2 years structural support by the LLB network to work amongst others on her production "Ember".

This support includes a co-production support by 4Culture and residencies at Veem House Amsterdam and Uferstudios Berlin.

“It’s hard to create something, to do actually anything at all – the regular things – without being constantly reminded that the world – meaning each and every one of us – is in a tremendous shift that will hopefully subsequently forever change our old ways. Now, perhaps more than ever, it’s time to drop the need to perform, to produce, to show – all of which stand at the top of our daily life necessities and activities – and embrace as much as we can the authenticity we talk so often about but seem to actually forget. Maybe there’s a lot in doing not much or nothing at all. Maybe less spectacular and just regular makes it human even more.”

Judith State is a professional dancer and choreographer based in Bucharest, with a classical ballet foundation and a foreign language bachelor’s degree in English and Spanish. She likes to search and manifest herself through movement, acting and singing and, in the past few years, she’s been juggling with these means of expression in contemporary performances, theatre works and film.

Her current research (which also involves musician Radu Dumitriu and István Téglás, performer, deals with the processes of remembering and traveling back in time to the very personal layers of childhood and her half Hungarian roots, tackling questions such as “how the intercultural mixture sets the prospects of an “undecided” personality?” and “how much do we belong to our early experiences and our molding and interpretation of them?”. It is thus mainly an autobiographical approach that generally combines movement, spoken text, singing and electronic live music all together.

She is also interested in ways of “arranging” and choreographing ordinary, pedestrian movement and transforming usual bodily sounds into music, and she will focus in her following work on the “humanity” of everyday life in movement.


"Something from childhood and something from playing, something from the seriousness and anxiety of adulthood, a little bit of how we love at different ages and how we sometimes wish we could stop time. Memories. Images that our minds randomly decide to keep and project over and over again.

A small capsule for future intelligence.

Ember means human."

Working and presentation dates:

1.07.2020 – 16.10.2020: residency, research & production, rehearsal period WASP Working Art Space and Production, Bucharest

17.10.2020: Ember Performance premiere the frame of eXplore festival #15, at The National Romanian Literature Museum, followed by an after talk with the artists

18.10.2020 – 30.10.2020: short video production, currently in post-production.


EMBER it’s been developed within Hardrive – Deep inside,  a cultural project co-financed by the Administration of the National Cultural Fund.

The new creation is developed within Creative Crossroads project, within Life Long Burning – Towards A Sustainable Eco-System for Contemporary Dance in Europe, co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union

Residency at Uferstudios Berlin – August 2022

Uferstudios offered a technical residency to Creative Crossroads Artist Judith State, chosen artist of 4Culture Bukarest, Rumania. Judith State will be hosted in a fully equipped studio during the period 01.08. – 14.08.2022 and be assisted by Uferstudios team on all necessary requests. Since this period of time Uferstudios also hosts an arrange of other residencies with artists from Sweden and Luxemburg and Australia (hosted by ada Studio on the same premise) an exchange and between all researching parties will be organized (get to know meetings, studio visits, feedback). This will allow Judith State not only to profit from new contacts within the Berlin dance scene, but extends this possibility to artists from a wider European- and non European context.

Artists involved: Judith State, István Téglás, Radu Dumitriu,

Romanian Choreographer Judith State was invited for a research residency to Uferstudios, Berlin. Being the Cycle 2 Creative Crossroads Artists send by WASP it State and her collaborators István Téglás and musician Radu Dumitriu intensively worked on their new production EMBER, which shall premier in late October 2022 at WASP Bucharest. Since State had been in residency at VEEM little earlier, the artists used the chance in Berlin to condense theirs first findings and concentrate on the variation of physical movement material and scores developed at an earlier stage. Their concentrated physical action was immersed in experimental electronic musical tryout by Radu Dumitriu, evoking seemingly known and unknown Hungarian folk music. Infact, Ember (how the work might be called) is a research dealing with the processes of remembering and traveling back in time: images, songs and sound brought the viewer back to very personal layers of an imaginary childhood and Judith State’s half Hungarian roots, while raising questions on the parallelism of intercultural background and waving personalities. It was striking on how States tryouts of pedestrian, quotidian movement brought back a very sincere, transparent and permeable body, transmitting a window in time towards the past, when her own professional body was not yet taken up and trained by technique and other outer practices.

Besides specific sound equipment and some try outs with light atmosphere no major technical assistance was needed. The very intense work on physical scores though seemed to bring State and her creative partners to a good point of entering the next stage of production.

Residency at Veem House Amsterdam

For this residency Veem House collaborated with Henny Jurriëns Studio, an International training center for dance professionals based in Amsterdam.

Judith State is a multidisciplinary artist trained in classical ballet. She’s a dance scholarship holder of Broadway Dance Centre in New York, and danceWEB scholarship holder of ImpulsTanz in Vienna. She long collaborates with choreographer Massimo Gerardi and in 2018 is part of Eszter Salamon’s Monument 0.8: Manifestations. In 2016 Judith made her debut in cinema, and received a Gopo Award nomination for best supporting actress in Cristi Piuiu’s Sieranevada. In 2018 she ends up winning the Gopo for Best Actress in a leading role for her appearance in Monsters. by Marius Olteanu. After that Judith is the lead in The Father Who Moves Mountains (Daniel Sandu), Refuge (Liviu Marghidan), Zenith dance film (Krisztof Gyuri) and R.M.N. (Cristian Mungiu).

In 2018 she created Emlék (translates to “remembrance” in Hungarian), an autobiographical modular project on remembering, consisting of a performance, a concert, a short film and movement/text workshops. In Veem House she worked on Ember, like her earlier work the title pays hommage to her part Hungarian heritage, and means “human” in Hungarian. While the idea for Ember and initial plan was already two years old, the residency in Veem House marks an early stage in her research. As time passed, and things changed, -working almost continuously in film, becoming a mother- Judith’s perception of what she wanted to research in Ember also changed. The two week residency in Veem House invited Judith to return to her practice as a choreographer, and back to her body as a dancer again.

During the residency Judith reflected many times on what it means to be an artist. When does one begin or stop performing. Trained in classical ballet, learning to train and forge her body to adhere to someone else’s vocabulary of movements, she is now interested in creating a vocabulary of her own, and using what is already there: the most habitual of gestures. Judith: “ I’m interested in the casual/natural movement of the body and the ways it can turn into "choreography" without adding aesthetics to it.”

We closed Judith’s residency with an Open Studio. Participants were invited into the space where she had been working for two weeks. They were introduced to the concept of the Open Studio as a moment of open and informal exchange. As audiences entered Judith’s studio she was already ‘performing’, and thus playing with the conventions of when an artists begins or stops. She shared her questions out loud in a stream of consciousness, while sometimes pausing and rewinding the track. Repeating words and movements creating a musicality in her speech, and a choreography in her habitual gestures.

Afterwards the audience engaged in a conversation about her practice, and the questions she was busy with. By opening up, and sharing her research Judith could reflect collectively with an audience on the thematics of ‘doing a performance’. Plus she could have an embodied experience of the dichotomy she was researching as she shifted from sharing or ‘performing’ her research to having a casual and informal exchange about it.


Gallery pics © 4Culture

Judith State – Ember

04.11.22 - 05.11.22

WASP Bucharest (RO)


Premiere Judith State – Ember

21.10.22 - 22.10.22

WASP Bucharest


Residency Judith State at Uferstudios Berlin

01.08.22 - 14.08.22

Uferstudios Berlin (DE)


Residency Judith State at Veem House Amsterdam

26.06.22 - 10.07.22

Veem House Amsterdam


Judith State – Hardrive – Deep inside, Ember

17.10.20 - 17.10.20

Bucharest (RO)

supported/organized by 4Culture