German ballet director fired after feces-smearing critic

Hamburg, Germany. 26th Apr, 2019. The Staatsoper Hannover's designated ballet director, Marco Goecke, is present i...

A newspaper critic's face was covered in dog feces by a German ballet choreographer who has since been fired.

At the Hanover State Opera, Marco Goecke was in charge of the ballet department when he confronted a critic for a negative review of one of his performances.

He has since been fired by the opera house, which claims that his "irresponsible actions have deeply unnerved the audience" and "irritated the public.".

It continued that he had "significantly harmed" the reputation of the opera house.

On Saturday, Mr. Goecke confronted dance critic Wiebke Hüster during the intermission of a ballet triple bill over a critique she had written of his most recent production, In The Dutch Mountains.

His show was compared to being "alternately driven mad and killed by boredom," according to Ms. Hüster's review.

In the theater's lobby, Mr. Goecke threatened to expel her and claimed that people had canceled their season tickets due to her performance.

He then presented her with a bag of dog feces, which he applied to her face.

Mr. Goecke was already on administrative leave when the Hanover State Opera announced on Thursday that his employment would end "with immediate effect.".

Director of the facility Laura Berman apologized to Ms. Hüster and said, "I cannot even begin to imagine what it must feel like to be humiliated like that in public.".

"Artistic creation and development benefit from criticism. ".

However, the opera house declared that it would make a distinction between Mr. Goecke and his work, and that future performances of his ballets would still be included in its schedule.

The New York Times reports that Mr. Goecke stated in a statement on Thursday that he had "sincerely apologized" for the incident and that what he did was "truly an awful thing," but that critics should refrain from writing in "a personal and hateful way.".

Mr. Goecke previously told the broadcaster NDR that his dachshund was responsible for the waste.

After the "brutal attack," Ms. Hüster, a journalist for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, told the BBC that she was "in shock.".

"I screamed and panicked when I realized what had happened. He had planned this, so I can assure you that it was not an impulsive action. I view it as a violation of press freedom," she declared.

German police are still looking into the incident.

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