A Period of Animate Existence

Pig Iron Theatre Company

2016
$300,000

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Pig Iron Theatre Company, A Period of Animate Existence. Photo by Maria Baranova.

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Dito van Reigersberg. Promotional photo for Pig Iron Theatre Company's I Promised Myself to Live Faster. Photo by Jason Rothenberg.

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Pig Iron Theatre Company, Zero Cost House, 2012. Photo by Jason Frank Rothenberg.

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Film still from Baroque Suite. Photo by Troy Herion.

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Pig Iron Theatre Company, A Period of Animate Existence. Photo by Maria Baranova.

Pig Iron Theatre Company will premiere a new symphonic theater hybrid that will offer a meditation on life and planetary cycles, set in a time of rapid ecological and technological changes. The piece will be developed in collaboration with Pig Iron artistic director and co-founder Dan Rothenberg, composer Troy Herion, playwright Will Eno, and designer Mimi Lien. Transcending traditional narrative forms, the work will bring together actors, classical musicians, intergenerational choirs, and electronic music in five staged movements of what Pig Iron describes as "hallucinatory visions" that contemplate the future of the planet. Echoing the character and pacing of a 19th-century symphony, the story will weave together perspectives of children, elders, and machines with complex soundscapes. Included will be an electro-acoustic instrumental piece, a segment resembling contemporary opera, and tropes from neo-classical ballet. Prior to the work's premiere at the 2017 Fringe Festival, Pig Iron will present scaled-down concert versions of individual movements, along with panels and presentations in collaboration with the Penn Program in the Environmental Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania.


Additional unrestricted funds are added to each grant for general operating support.