FringeArts participates in The Hatchery Project, a new multi-city residency programMar 19th, 2013 | By Steven Weisz | Category: Archived Articles
Four artists to travel to four U.S. programs over the course of three years, including FringeArts at its new waterfront headquarters
Furthering the research and development phases of American performance residencies, FringeArts (formerly the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and Philly Fringe) is participating in The Hatchery Project, a multi-year collaborative residency partnership that focuses on supporting artists’ creative needs and goals outside the cycle of grant applications and premiere dates.
The Hatchery Project, made possible with lead support by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and additional funding by the National Endowment for the Arts, is devoting approximately $600,000 over three years to multi-site creative residencies for four artists: Luciana Achugar, Beth Gill, Reggie Wilson and Big Dance Theater’s Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar. The artists will visit four partner sites around the country, where residencies will be tailored to their particular practices and goals. Along with FringeArts’ new waterfront center on the Delaware River, the sites include the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography at Florida State University (Tallahassee), Vermont Performance Lab (Guilford, VT) and The Chocolate Factory Theater (Long Island City, NY).
Each of these artists will receive substantial financial and administrative support to conduct their residencies. The Hatchery Project’s support of these artists is not tied to the premiere or public presentation of a particular work; rather, it is intended to engage audiences and peers from a diverse set of communities in the processes of art-making.
“Each site can offer unique resources to these artists, working with them to not only support the development of work but also offer entry points to their creative processes that can embolden the work and the audience experience,” says Craig T. Peterson, FringeArts’ Lab Director. “It’s also a good opportunity to bring artists into town who can engage and connect with local artists, expanding our creative landscape.”
An integral part of FringeArts’ new building is hosting the organization’s Lab program (formerly the Live Arts Brewery) in a brand-new, 832-square-foot studio space, and Peterson says it’s an important step in establishing the organization as a top national residency program: “The type of work we’re doing with the Hatchery Project is critical for us at this juncture with our building — finding new ways to bring audiences into a deeper understanding of what we do. This project establishes FringeArts as a national incubator for experimental work in addition to our established presenting profile.”
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Luciana Achugar is a Uruguayan choreographer based in Brooklyn. She moved to New York in 1995 after graduating from Cal Arts. In New York, she worked as a dancer with several influential choreographers including Jeremy Nelson, Wil Swanson, Maria Hassabi, Chameckilerner and John Jasperse. From 1999 to 2003, she worked in a close collaborative relationship with choreographer Levi Gonzalez. Since 2002 she has been doing her own independent work.
Beth Gill is a Queens-based artist, who makes contemporary dance and performance in New York City. She has accumulated a body of work that critically examines issues relating to the fields of contemporary dance and performance studies, through an ongoing exploration of aesthetics and perception. Ranging from short-term improvised structures to long-term choreographed performances, her work has been commissioned by The Kitchen, Dance Theater Workshop, The Chocolate Factory Theater and Dixon Place as well as performed internationally.
Reggie Wilson (artistic director, choreographer and performer) founded his company, Reggie Wilson/Fist & Heel Performance Group, in 1989. Wilson draws from the movement languages of the blues, slave and spiritual cultures of Africans in the Americas and combines them with post-modern elements and his own personal movement style to create what he calls “post-African/Neo-HooDoo Modern dances.”
Founded in 1991, Big Dance Theater is known for its inspired use of dance, music, text and visual design. The company often works with wildly incongruent source material, weaving and braiding disparate strands into multi-dimensional performance. Led by Co-Artistic Directors Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar, Big Dance has delved into the literary work of such authors as Twain, Tanizaki, Wellman, Euripides and Flaubert, and use dance as both frame and metaphor to theatricalize these writings.
ABOUT THE PARTNER ORGANIZATIONS
FringeArts (formerly the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival), founded 1996, began the Lab program in 2009 in an effort to address the developmental needs of artists in Philadelphia and to create an artistic destination for artists to engage with the robust artistic community within the city. The Lab offers a rehearsal studio for research, experimentation, and full production residencies in combination with a variety of presenting efforts that focus entirely on the developmental process. Educated and engaged audience interaction plays a central role in the development and research of material throughout all of the Lab’s process-oriented programming including its Fellowship program, a yearlong artist-in-residence series that deeply engages artists in a curriculum of activity focused on artistic process, and its production residency program, Lab Test, which merges creative process and audience engagement.
Vermont Performance Lab (VPL) is a laboratory for creative research and community engagement. Over the last six years, VPL has brought artists of regional, national and international stature to develop new performance works in the grange halls, studios and small towns of Southeastern Vermont. The small organization has designed a flexible approach to artist residencies that prioritizes the creative process over final presentation of work, and promotes synergistic collaborations between artists and VPL’s local community. VPL has created a network of partnering organizations to support the work of its Lab Artists including Guilford Sound, a professional sound studio that provides recording and technical support; Marlboro College, a liberal arts college that provides use of facilities and access to scholars; and a variety of local arts, community and social service organizations that provide space and membership to assist in engaging new audiences in the production of contemporary performance works and building the creative capital of a rural community.
Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography (MANCC) is the only national center for choreography in the world located in a major research institution, and operates from one of the premiere dance facilities in the United States. The Center is embedded within The Florida State University School of Dance, offering unparalleled opportunities for contemporary choreographers to hone their artistic practice and develop new work inside a creative community. MANCC encourages resident artists to bring dancers, designers, dramaturges, composers, and other appropriate collaborators that would enhance their creative inquiry through physical, conceptual, experiential, or scientific means. Artists have 24/7 access to a black box studio and/or open light studio, as well as a variety of additional shared facilities (media lab, cameras, audio lab, recording studio, costume shop). MANCC staff is skilled at working closely with artists to craft engaging and intimate moments of reflection with targeted community members to simultaneously create work and build new audiences for dance. MANCC helps make connections to collaborators and audiences by drawing from the large body of academics at FSU, the Tallahassee community, and the National field at large.
The Chocolate Factory Theater is an artist-founded, artist-run presenting organization with its own multi-use facility in Long Island City, Queens. Now in its 7th year, The Chocolate Factory has become an important hub for the New York performance community, providing commissioning and residency support for dance, theater, music, and multimedia artists. The Chocolate Factory’s Artistic Director creates and presents his own work at the venue; his artistic sensibility, and his sensitivity to the needs and challenges of creating new performance, inform all of the organization’s dealings with visiting artists (including the artists participating in The Hatchery Project). The Chocolate Factory’s facility and equipment are designed for flexible use; and can accommodate highly technical production residencies at all phases of a project’s development. Since opening its doors in 2005, The Chocolate Factory has cultivated a thriving community of artists and audience members whose interests are very much aligned with The Hatchery Project’s focus on research and creative development.