Sei kein Mann (Don't be a Man)

Be a man. Don't be a man. Real men are feminists. Pull yourself together. Show your feelings. Be cool.

Sei kein Mann is a piece addressed to youth and young men, but relevant for everyone.

Inspired by the JJ Bola’s book Mask Off and set to live music, this piece clears out old habits and burned-in images of masculinities. A critical, funny, feminist, accessible and sensual dance evening for young people and adults. Sei kein Mann tackles images of masculinity that are prevalent in advertising, sports, social media, music, film, etc. These instantly recognisable images are accepted as the valid versions of what masculinity is: strong, aggressive, ambitious, successful, dominant.

Sei kein Mann challenges these images and argues for masculinities in which men cooperate more than compete, dance more than fight, cry and laugh more, express feelings and listen to each other, really listen. It shows how the toxic system of patriarchy is deeply damaging to women and relationships but also to men. The male performers reflect on what patriarchy has taught them and what they want to change.

Image Gallery


  • Choreography: Vanessa Cook
  • Concept, Research, Education: Luzius Engel (for Kollektiv F)
  • Performers: Arno Brys, Petr Nedbal, Emanuel Rüfenacht
  • Music: Luz Gonzalez
  • Lighting Design: Mirjam Berger
  • Stage and Costume Design: Renate Wuensch
  • Outside Eye: Noemi Gradwohl
  • Production: Nina Engel
  • Film and Photography: Nicole Pfister


Sei kein Mann (Don't be a Man) was financially supported by:

  • Coproduction with Dampfzentrale, Bern
  • Kultur Stadt Bern
  • SWISSLOS/Kultur Kanton Bern
  • Burgergemeinde Bern
  • Migros-Kulturprozent
  • Ernst Göhner Stiftung
  • Stanley Thomas Johnson Stiftung