Philadelphia Contemporary kicks off with a series of performances and dialogues at four sites along the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers

Eiko Otake: A Body in Hong Kong at Mobile M+: Live Art, 2015. Photo: CPAK studio

The Quiet Circus: River Charrettes
is a collaborative project between Headlong and Philadelphia Contemporary.

Philadelphia Contemporary and Headlong invite the public on Saturday, September 24, 2016 to a free outdoor performance and conversation at Bartram’s Garden. The Quiet Circus: River Charrette 1 features internationally celebrated dancer Eiko Otake (Eiko & Koma) and former Philadelphia Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger (Drexel University).

The Quiet Circus: River Charrette 1
is a rare chance to participate in a site-specific exploration of place and movement while contemplating how our bodies interact with the built and natural environment.  It is the first of four Charrettes – participatory performances and dialogues – reflecting upon topics raised at four different sites along Philadelphia’s waterfronts and in the performance series The Quiet Circus, conceived by David Brick (Headlong) as an ongoing participatory practice at the Washington Avenue Pier and the adjoining Delaware River trail in South Philadelphia.

The first River Charrette is a combination of a brief outdoor performance by Eiko Otake, who will lead participants from Bartram’s Garden’s boating pier through the woods to the sloping field on the banks of the Schuylkill River. The performance is followed by a conversation between Eiko and  Alan Greenberger, whose leadership was integral to the City’s current growth and who led the effort to significantly transform the Schuylkill River waterfront. The conversation will be moderated by Harry Philbrick (Philadelphia Contemporary). David Brick (Headlong) will join in the conversation.

The Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers have shaped the natural and social environment of the city of Philadelphia, both as metaphors and as sources of power, industry, and beauty. But how do people interact with their built environment? And what impact do natural forces have on our infrastructure and vice versa? These and other questions, and the garden’s complex environment are basis for a critical conversation which will touch on themes in the performance series The Quiet Circus‘ and Eiko Otake’s work: the vulnerable but strong human body in culturally shaped landscapes, the interplay of nature and planned environments, and how urban development ultimately confronts larger forces of natural and human interaction.

The Quiet Circus and the accompanying River Charrettes are free of charge.

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