Annenberg Center Live

1/3: Pictured, from left to right: Theaster Gates, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Traci Tolmaire, Tommy Shepherd. Photo by Bethanie Hines.
2/3: Tadhg Murphy and Liam Carney in The Cripple of Inishmaan. Photo by Robert Day.
3/3: Photo by Richard Termine.

An urban performing arts center on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania, Annenberg Center Live presents touring theater, jazz, and world music. Companies from Ireland have gained a particular following at the Annenberg after presentations of Beckett’s Endgame and Waiting for Godot from the Gate Theatre, Mark O’Rowe’s raw and modern Terminus from the Abbey Theatre, and the Center-supported Cripple of Inishmaan by Martin McDonagh from the Druid Theatre. The Annenberg’s commitment to expressions of adventuresome perspectives on contemporary issues was reflected in Marc Bamuthi Joseph’s red, black & GREEN: a blues, which reached an urban audience from the Annenberg’s West Philly neighborhood with an interactive, hybrid piece of spoken word/hip-hop theater. Each year the Annenberg also presents Dance Celebration, a series produced in partnership with Dance Affiliates and the Philadelphia International Children’s Festival, which in 2010 included the Center supported production of Basil Twist’s Petrushka, which combined music, dance, and both Czech and Japanese puppetry technique.


As part of Bryn Mawr College’s ongoing retrospective, Trisha Brown: In the New Body, the Pennsylvania Ballet performs Brown’s O zlozony/O composite, becoming the first US ballet company to perform Brown’s choreography.

Thaddeus Phillips’ original musical Red-Eye to Havre de Grace, which originally debuted in Philadelphia with Center support, has received a massive amount of positive critical attention for its Off-Broadway debut.

Philadelphia Dance Projects and Group Motion Multi Media Dance Theater present the finale of Susan Rethorst/Moving in Philadelphia: 2013-2014, a world premiere work by choreographer Susan Rethorst.

“Dancing around the Bride* at the Philadelphia Museum of Art told “the story of five extraordinary artists and what happened to art and culture when their lives and work intersected,” said curator Carlos Basualdo.

Grants & Grantees

The Slought Foundation conceived and built a long-term interactive sound room, closely modeled on a 1989 lecture/performance by American avant-garde composer John Cage.

Patricia Lent of the Merce Cunningham Trust, theater-maker Richard Schechner, and video/installation artist Sharon Hayes gather to discuss the question of reenactment in cultural practice, with UC Berkeley professor Shannon Jackson as moderator.

Leah Stein’s Center-funded project Battle Hymns, set to an original score by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer David Lang, was remounted in San Francisco in the spring of 2013.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Director and producer Melanie Joseph is the artistic producer and founder of the Foundry Theatre in New York City.

Artifact Suite by choreographer William Forsythe features 29 dancers in choreography that pushes them beyond their perceived physical limits, demanding sharp timing, precise syncopation, and coordination.

The Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance created a full-time controller position to manage a wide range of departments.

A world premiere, music-theater work by playwright Colman Domingo and directed by Patricia McGregor will offer a fresh perspective on the artistic legacy of vocalist and jazz pianist Nat “King” Cole by bringing to light both his on- and off-stage personas, as well as telling the story behind the 1957 demise of his groundbreaking national television variety show amidst America’s growing civil rights movement.

When asked about his sense of ethical responsibility in creating work, Whit MacLaughlin of New Paradise Laboratories responded with a reflection on his place in the performance world.