• Current: From Dawn Till Dusk at 2nd Floor Rear in Chicago! Feb 5, 2017

    Current: From Dawn Till Dusk at 2nd Floor Rear in Chicago! Feb 5, 2017

    From Dawn Till Dusk premiers at 2nd Floor Rear!

    Durational Performance Event \\ Mana Contemporary Chicago, 2233 S. Throop St., Studio 619 \\ 6:30 AM-6:30 PM

    Join me at From Dawn Till Dusk: FDTD is a 12-hour participatory performance event where each hour, from morning light until sunset, invites the audience into a personal or cultural ritual, inspired by the company’s Canadian, American, Persian and Jewish heritage. Over the course of a day, each hour melts into the next, leading the audience into a variety of experiences that slow time, present the mundane, along with glimmers of humor and revolution.The day unfolds through the guidance of artists Rachel Ellison and Coleen MacPherson. Live music—performed by a musical ensemble comprised of Arif Mirbaghi, Andrew Moljgun, Tom Moffet, and Raha Javanfar—will merge disparate gestures into a cohesive expression of intentionality.

    The piece begins just before sunrise at 7:00 AM. We will journey from darkness, through light, and return to darkness as we close our practice by nightfall. Over the course of the day, each hour will evoke a range of sensorial and social cues indicating the passage from one state of being, or ritual environment, to the next. We are interested in rituals old and new and in connecting to our own personal cultural references through reflection and action. The arc of the overall piece will ebb and flow, like breath. Audiences may engage, watch, listen, eat, or even sleep depending on the nature of the proposed rituals and their personal preferences.

    Our invitation: Enter and take a breath.

    About Open Heart Surgery Theatre:

    OHS_BlueOpen Heart Surgery Theatre is an international theatre ensemble based in Toronto and London, UK, led by Coleen MacPherson.

    We are comprised of a mixture of performers including Lecoq-trained theatre-makers that are interested in inter-cultural work that engages audiences in a visceral experience and experiments with language, form, and style. We take an interdisciplinary approach to theatre-making, merging live music, dance and movement to create original theatre that opens the heart and speaks about relevant issues. The company also creates participatory events that engage audience members in a unique way.

    Recently, the company took part in a residency at Plateau 31 in Paris, France and Old Vic New Voices in the UK for This Is Why We Live. The show was showcased at The Theatre Centre in Toronto in October 2016 and will be touring in 2017. After a successful run in London, UK, First Draft was recently performed at Falaki Theatre in Cairo in collaboration with StudioZAT in Egypt.

    openheartsurgerytheatre.com | coleenmacpherson.com | thedoublecuts.com

    This event takes place in conjunction with 2nd Floor Rear arts festival:
    2nd Floor Rear is an annual DIY festival of art in experimental contexts, apartment galleries, and ephemeral and migrant projects, celebrating Chicago’s vibrant community of alternative art spaces.

    A practical exercise in conceptual play, or a conceptual exercise in playful practicality, 2nd Floor Rear upholds Chicago’s long history of scrappy, yet self-aware modes of creative production, and embraces improvisation and makeshift solutions as a means of navigating the complexity of lived experience.

    Past artworks, events, and happenings range from late-night studio square dancing to a guerrilla sculpture garden, a site-specific installation in an underpass, and a nomadic art gallery in a handbag. Each February, this yearly festival connects artists with new audiences, helps underfunded and under-appreciated alternative spaces get some exposure, and enlivens a dreary winter weekend at the peak of Chicago’s bleakest season.


    Ongoing: In February 2016 I spent a month long residency at Ragdale Foundation in Lake Forest, Illinois. I look forward to sharing the fruits of that quiet time later this year.

    My main focus for residency was Gymnasium for the Soul, a project scheduled to debut at an Corner Chicago exhibition in Chicago, Fall 2017. I am workshopping the project all year long and have already held several workshops at ACRE Projects and with the Neofuturists.

    I am currently (and pretty much from now on) looking for participants to either speak with me about their subjective experience of inhabiting their own body, and/or people who would like to transform one of these interviews into an exercise for mind, body, or otherwise. The result will be a class where people experience one another's bodies, derived from a process of translation: Gymnasium for the Soul. Message me if you would like more information.