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Posts Tagged ‘circus’

Circadium Presents: 4:18 AM / Chaos Theory

Posted September 20th, 2019

September 20–22, 2019

A contemporary circus double feature: 4:18 AM is an introspective visual album of Let Them Eat Chaos by poet and musician Kate Tempest. In one surreal minute, seven strangers question their own humanity. Chaos Theory uses juggling, equilibristics, and theater to study the differences between order and chaos. 15-minute intermission between shows.

$20 / 90 minutes


“Circadium Presents” is an annual contemporary circus addition to the Philadelphia Fringe Festival hosted and sponsored by Circadium School of Contemporary Circus. Special thanks to Kate Tempest and wildlife entertainment for the use of “Let Them Eat Chaos” by poet and musician Kate Tempest.

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Male Tears: A Clown Castration

Posted September 8th, 2019

September 8 + 9, 2019

Brick and Bristle explore masculinity the only way possible, through a red nose and booty shorts. When does masculinity become toxic? With the smallest masks, these two clowns seek to unmask a space where masculinity can be vulnerable. Is castration inevitable? Don’t manspread too much.

$10 / 45 minutes


Director Rebecca Posner Photography/Production Manager Jeanne Lyons

Nathan Alford-Tate, Travis Draper & Rebecca Posner are devising artists from various parts of the US. Sharing a common education from the Devised Performance MFA program at UARTS/Pig Iron, we seek to create work that is interdisciplinary. We connect movement, music, text, and metaphors to realize our original pieces. Our mission is to create theatrical experiences that eschew the easy labels of “play” or “musical” and dissolve not only the barriers between stylistic modes but also the barrier between performer and audience.

HABIT@

Posted September 5th, 2019

September 5–7, 10–16 + 18–22, 2019

Urban environments attempt to bury primal urges and archetypes under concrete and asphalt lucre. Withal life finds light through fractures in terrain and suspension of urbanities. Wash away the doldrums and allow the inner fire to combust. Are you a product of your environment or is your environment a product of you?

$35 / 60 minutes


Matter Movement Group (MMG) is excited to present the world premiere of HABIT@ during the 2019 Fringe Festival. This is MMG’s 2nd participation in the festival following the smash hit UNHINGED in 2018. Come and exist amongst a set that will morph and evolve, displaying scenes from many habitats around the world. Using the elements water, wind, fire and earth MMG demonstrates the worlds most unusually profound acts of nature.

Matter Movement Group is a physical dance theater company in Philadelphia, PA promoting a distinction in the community by animating the visions of Teddy Fatscher and Frank Leone. Utilizing a collaborative approach, MMG relies heavily on the brains and bodies involved with individual projects. Among annual seasons and tours, MMG uses art and entertainment to raise awareness and funds for local non-profits and charities. MMG has aspirations to bring original works from the local Philadelphia audience to other cities and countries around the world.

Learn More:
tfatscher.wixsite.com/habitat
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In Transit

Posted September 4th, 2019

September 4–7, 2019

Stand clear of the closing doors! In this new circus-theater show, nine women climb silks and hang from trapezes as subway rides and bus trips become a platform for aerial dance and intimate moments between strangers. Tangle’s acrobats travel through our public spaces to find love, frustration, and missing umbrellas. Tickets for the preview performance will be sold at a reduced price of $14.

$20 / 90 minutes


Next stop, Philly Fringe! Tangle Movement Arts, Philadelphia’s aerial storytellers, present In Transit, a new circus-theater show that explores the ordinary and extraordinary moments found on public transportation. Nine women climb silks and hang from trapezes as subway rides and bus stops become a platform for aerial dance and intimate moments between strangers. Mixing live music, acrobatic movement, and theatrical magic, In Transit premieres at Old City Neighborhood House on September 4–7, 2019.

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Who’s Who in High Pressure Fire Service, part two

Posted April 2nd, 2019
by Raina Searles, Marketing Manager

In March, we kicked off High Pressure Fire Service (or more colloquially, HPFS, pronounced “hip-fizz”) with an incredibly moving production chronicling the disability rights movement in A Fierce Kind of Love, produced by the Institute on Disabilities at Temple University, and we followed that with a thought-provoking musical satire about the American abortion debate, The Appointment, by Lightning Rod Special. In just a couple weeks, we’ll kick off a highly interactive show made for a family unit and exploring the line between play and performance, Broccoli, Roosevelt and Mr House! by the Berserker Residents. But today, we’re talking about the final three shows in HPFS: where you’ve seen these artists, what to expect in their work, and breaking down Who’s Who in High Pressure Fire Service…part two.

Coming up this May,  A Hard Time by Pig Iron Theatre Company opens at FringeArts. Long time Fringe fans will recognize Pig Iron from many of their notable devised works presented by FringeArts. Most recently, they produced A Period of Animate Existence in the 2017 Fringe Festival. Other recent works include Swamp Is On (2015), 99 BREAKUPS (2014), Pay Up (2013), Zero Cost House (2012), Twelfth Night, or What You Will (2011), and many more going back to the origins of the Fringe Festival in 1997!

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Happy Hour on the Fringe: Circa Contemporary Circus’ Libby McDonnell & Nathan Boyle

Posted October 11th, 2018

Libby McDonnell and Nathan Boyle from Circa Contemporary Circus stop by Happy Hour on the Fringe to chat about their breathtaking show Humans.

Photo courtesy of Mark Garvin

Circa Contemporary Circus, one of the world’s leading performance companies at the forefront of the new wave of contemporary Australian circus, has been wowing audiences around the world since 2004. The company is known to use extreme physicality to create breathtaking performances that straddle the worlds of circus, dance, and physical theatre. Last month, Circa traveled all the way from Brisbane to close the 2018 Fringe Festival with a dynamic exploration of what it means to be human. Before wowing Fringe Festival audiences with their performances of Humans, Circa’s associate director, Libby McDonnell, and senior acrobat, Nathan Boyle, sat down with host of Happy Hour on the Fringe Zach Blackwood at the Annenberg Center for Performing Arts. They gave him a peek into the creation of Humans and their current tour of the piece.   To learn more about Circa Contemporary Circus visit circa.org.au. Let us know you think of podcast, and check back next week for a new episode of Happy Hour on the Fringe.

International Fringe 2018: A Welcome to Artists from Around the World

Posted September 2nd, 2018

The United States government may be pursuing an isolationist policy but the Philadelphia Fringe is doing the opposite: opening its doors not only to the most creative American performers and performances but also to the best and most creative theater artists and their productions from around the world—overcoming the ancient fear of the symbolic Tower of Babel with people not understanding each other.

To show the worldwide scope of the 22nd Philadelphia Fringe Festival, we offer this spotlight on performers from abroad and productions by American artists that present a global perspective.

Theater writer Henrik Eger, editor of Drama Around the Globe and contributor to Phindie and Broad Street Review, among other publications, has lived in six countries on three continents and has visited Africa and Australia as well. He bids everyone a hearty WELCOME to the City of Brotherly Love—this year in 18 different languages: Arabic, Celtic, Chinese, English, Esperanto, Estonian, Farsi, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Irish, Italian, Latin, Polish, Romanian, and Spanish.

We start this year’s overview with a special welcome to two programs featuring a wide range of global creators:

INTERNATIONAL CREATIVES

  1. le super grandBienvenue & welcome to Montreal-based choreographer Sylvain Émard and Le Super Grand ContinentalLe Grand Continental wowed audiences during its run at the 2012 Fringe Festival and has garnered enthusiastic response across the world. Fully realizing a blissful marriage between the pure delight of line dancing and the fluidity and expressiveness of contemporary dance, the celebratory event enlists hundreds of local people to perform its synchronized choreography in large-scale public performances. The world’s most infectious performance event returns to the front steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in an even larger spectacle of dance.

More info and tickets here

  1. Bonvenon, willkommen, bienvenido, witamy, bienvenue & welcome to Do You Want A Cookie? from The Bearded Ladies Cabaret—a world premiere with an international cast. Do You Want A Cookie? serves up a delicious romp through cabaret history, with an international cast of artists performing a live revue of cabaret from the Chat Noir to Weimar nightlife to 21st-century drag. The all-star cast comes draws from around the world, including Bridge Markland (Berlin), Malgorzata Kasprzycka (Paris/Warsaw), Dieter Rita Scholl (Berlin), and Tareke Ortiz (Mexico City).

More info and tickets here

REFUGEES and EXILES

  1. ear whispered

    As Far As My Fingertips Take Me. Photo by

    وسهلا اهلا (ahlaan wasahlan) & bienvenu. Welcome to Tania El Khoury who lives in Lebanon and the UK with her multifaceted program ear-whispered. Little is known about Palestinian refugee camps and their communities. El Khoury presents her Fringe work in five parts through interactive performances and installations at Bryn Mawr College:

    1. Gardens Speak, an interactive sound installation containing the oral histories of ten ordinary people who were buried in Syrian gardens. (Bryn Mawr College.) Read more.
    2. Camp Pause, a video installation that tells the stories of four residents of the Rashidieh Refugee Camp on the coast of Lebanon. (Bryn Mawr College.) Read more.
    3. As Far As My Fingertips Take Me, an encounter through a gallery wall between a single audience member and a refugee. (Old City & Bryn Mawr College.) Read more.  
    4. Stories of Refuge, an immersive video installation that invites audiences to lay down on metal bunk beds and watch videos shot by Syrian asylum seekers in Munich, Germany. (Old City.) Read more.
    5. Tell Me What I Can Do, a newly commissioned work featuring letters that audiences have written in response to Gardens Speak. (Bryn Mawr College.) Read more.

More info and tickets here

  1. Bienvenido & welcome to the bilingual (Spanish & English) cast of La Fábrica performing Gustave Ott’s Passport. Lost in a foreign country, Eugenia is detained and thrown into a vicious maelstrom of miscommunication. This poetic and immersive Kafkaesque thriller delves into the question of immigration—exposing the mechanics of language and power. Some performances will be presented in English, some in Spanish, and some will be decided at the toss of a coin.

More info and tickets here

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Poetry in the Air: Tangle Movement Arts brings Life Lines to the Fringe

Posted July 26th, 2017

Rebecca Mo Davis in Life Lines

In their seventh consecutive Fringe Festival show, Tangle Movement Arts uses the poetry of aerial dance and acrobatics to express stories of loss. The show is Life Lines, and it blends together circus arts, theater, and live music.  Philadelphia-born Lauren Rile Smith is one of the producers of the show and founders of the company. “Life Lines is a portrait of a community that is recovering from sudden losses,” she says. “It follows the story of three different women who are processing and healing from really unexpected change: one losing a lover, one losing a sense of safety or security, one losing a sense of connection with others.” In line with much of Tangle’s past work, this show is intensely emotional. The artists use their movements as a physical language to express feelings of loss, “like when you literally feel like the ground can’t support you, or that the person who’s holding you will drop you suddenly.”

Lauren grew up in a family of artists. She’s the oldest of four sisters, all artists: one sister is a violist, one is a playwright, and another a glassblower. She had never practiced circus arts – she had been on the track to become a writer. But while studying English at Swarthmore College, Lauren encountered the writings of a dancer and acrobat that guided her in another direction. “I’ve had chronic pain for most of my adult life. She wrote about her body as though it were a companion, a creative project, a creative constraint, something to take care of, and something that took care of her. I was mesmerized by the possibility that really anyone could relate to their body that way, and I thought, I want that.” She began learning the trapeze in 2009, and found that the nature of the exercise, along with becoming stronger, diminished her pain. All at once, she found herself falling in love with the art form of trapeze. “I loved the way it married these concrete visual metaphors with these surreal actions, like spinning upside down.”

With a couple of friends, she started Tangle Movement Arts in 2011, as an all-women group that was barreling head-on into a new and growing contemporary circus arts movement. Their first show, Ampersand, was in the Fringe Festival that year. Since then, they’ve put on two major shows each year, along with smaller pop-up productions in between. Even though she’s from Philly, she found herself thrown into the Philly arts scene in a new way, discovering that it was a vibrant and innovative community. She met many artists that moved Philly specifically to make art. “I’m finding that it’s such a welcoming community, and the different artistic communities have such great overlap.” One of these artists was Megan Gendell, who wrote the words that inspired Lauren back in college and changed the way she viewed her body. (She has since collaborated with Tangle, in past shows Tell it Slant and Points of Light.)

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The Back Side Of Things, or The Art Of Volunteering

Posted August 10th, 2012

Festival Blog contributor Ellia Bisker is a writer, performer, and all around arts-girl who fronts NYC-based indie rock band Sweet Soubrette.

Glamor moment for volunteers.

When I started volunteering with the circus and variety arts troupe I’ve been working with for a decade now, it was the glamorous aspects of the show that pulled me in. I had no special interest in working in stage management or theater tech; I was just a starry-eyed fan and I wanted to see the show for free. Since then I’ve gone from volunteer to volunteer manager, with some detours along the way (merch girl, performer, board member), and I’ve learned a few things about the magic of stagecraft. I’ve also observed an interesting phenomenon that goes on when it comes to making that magic happen.

At a typical variety show I manage three volunteers, whose efforts are critical to the success of the operation. There’s the roustabout, who gets the privilege of carrying things on and offstage between acts (and occasionally of cleaning up . . . most memorably, after a “synchronized swimming” act left the stage covered in water, to the theater staff’s deep dismay). There’s the merch girl (or guy, but usually girl), who is tasked with trying to charm audience members into buying T-shirts and other wares during intermission and on to the bitter end of post-show socializing, while also keeping track of the money. And there’s the usher/mailing list person, whose responsibilities include getting people seated in orderly fashion and later pestering them to write down their e-mail addresses on a clipboard.

Backstage we’re all just people: the ringmistress and a volunteer share a moment.

In addition to delegating the tasks above, I play house manager, which involves liaising between the theater staff and our people, dealing with miscellaneous odds and ends, and handling unexpected emergencies. Are we ready to start? Are they ready to start? Why is the house music so quiet? Where is the sound guy? Who is on the comp list? Can we have our drink tickets now? Is there a mop handy? Is one of the volunteers willing to wear a Statue of Liberty costume in the next bit? Can we get some ice backstage, like, immediately?

These roles are not exactly glamorous. With a few exceptions (see: Statue of Liberty, above; occasional requests for lovely assistants), the volunteer jobs can be described as distinctly non-glamorous. For clarification, glamorous things include: spangled costumes; false eyelashes; fishnet tights; makeup; three-piece suits; larger-than-life stage characters. Non-glamorous things include: clipboards; spreadsheets; counting the money in the merch bank; carrying heavy things; mops. Put more broadly, glamour involves the end result, the glittery artifice, the successful illusion, while non-glamour involves everything it takes to get there. Presentation vs. process.

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Video Teaser For Séquence 8 by 7 Fingers

Posted April 17th, 2012

The Live Arts Festival is very excited to bring back the Montreal-based urban circus group 7 Fingers (Traces) for a U.S. premiere of their new show Séquence 8. Enjoy the trailer!