Past & Future

Beginning in 2011, Performance Space 122 embarked on one of the most unusual and potentially radical shifts in its history, including a re-structuring of artist support, a business model overhaul, and the renovation of our building. As PS122’s East Village home undergoes a much-needed interior renovation supported primarily by the City of New York, DCA and DDC, PS122’s core activity continues to be providing audiences with contemporary live performance. We are invigorated by the prospect of this multi-year journey and the re-opening in larger, state-of-the-art, column-free, flexible, ADA-compliant theaters. Programming in 2011 – 2015 traverses the five boroughs of NYC and beyond. As PS122 considers and defines the future of contemporary performance presentation we continue to consider the East Village as our home and look forward to returning when renovations are complete.

For over 3 decades, Performance Space 122 has been a hub for contemporary performance and an active member of the cultural community in NYC and across the globe. Under the curatorial vision of Vallejo Gantner (Artistic Director 2005 – present) PS122 has developed a set of programs designed to re-establish the value of live performance, provide singular experiences for audiences that inspire critical thinking, and sustain the creative process for artists throughout their career. Through partnering with peer organizations as well as contemporary institutions who share our belief in the cultural importance of live performance, PS122 currently commissions and presents artists in all disciplines in spaces all over the city during an annual fall & spring season and COIL festival in January.

Founded in 1980 by Charles Dennis, Tim Miller, Charles Moulton, and Peter Rose, in what was then an abandoned public school building, Performance Space 122 is proud to have brought forward not only artists, like John Leguizamo, Jonathan Ames, Eric Bogosian, the Blue Man Group or Annie Dorsen who have gone on to make waves in commercial arenas on Broadway or at HBO, but also artists who have triggered national debate about political and ethical issues, like the original “NEA four”, Ethyl Eichelberger (HIV/AIDS activist), or more recently Young Jean Lee and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (contemporary social critiques), as well as artists who have radicalized aesthetic form like Meredith Monk, Spalding Gray, Ron Athey, Richard Maxwell, Elevator Repair Service, Radiohole, Adrienne Truscott, Verdensteatret (Norway), Rabih Mroué (Lebanon), Philippe Quesne (France), and Maria Hassabi (Cyprus).

In addition to the commissioning and presenting of artists, PS122 strives to provide audiences with a variety of off-stage access points for the work that is on stage or in the space. These activities have included talkbacks with the artists as well as conversations with luminaries from non-arts disciplines on topics that range from religion to migration, queer real estate, to cultural diplomacy and everything in between. PS122 strongly encourages the asking of questions and debate as well as the taking of creative risks in all forms of contemporary performance.

  • Are you watching @Tate_Live stream of Alexandra Bachzetsis'? Love those unitards! #BMWTateLive http://t.co/Lb0prVrEPa

  • RT @bessieawards: Chirlane McCray thinks dance is the most beautiful of all the arts!! #thebessies30 #newyorkerfordance @DanceNYC @flashlane

  • RT @TheJoyceTheater: Congrats creative team of This was the end 2014 visual design award #thebessies30

  • RT @csketches: Excellents Welcomes Excellence:Jessy Norman greets @chirlane #thebessies30 http://t.co/7vWVgMKN8k"

  • RT @DanspaceProject: WE ❤️ OKWUI + PETER! Outstanding Production #BronxGothic #thebessies30

  • RT @LMCC: Okwui + Peter! Yay! #thebessies30 @DanspaceProject @PS122 @R2RFestival

  • Psyched to have the musical priests from @RoyalOsiris sharing #OUTHERE moments & talking about their new show! http://t.co/M9HXhUhIoJ

  • RT @APAP365: Comedy Club in Spain uses facial recognition to charge their audience 'per laugh' http://t.co/Fk9XHcO7QU

  • RT @hyperjetlag: Ladies and gentlemen. I present to you a fully rehabilitated @ps122 mascot. Evelyn the chicken is… http://t.co/m8Tg55YN8y

  • RT @hyperjetlag: Hey @PS122 - I think Evelyn needs to feature in the #coil15 brochure. After all, she's been as close to #outhere as any o…

  • RT @globalFEST_NYC: Grab our indiegogo Jan in NYC perk w/ tix to @UnderTheRadar, @NYCWJF , @PROTOTYPEfest & @PS122! http://t.co/i56EeCfaHi

  • Very excited for #pigpentheatreco @newvictory! http://t.co/aPgFocMcet

  • Do you think @SliceOutHunger will have enough pizza for my appetite? We'll see tonight. http://t.co/rE2M9GOj7b Proceeds @FoodBank4NYC

  • PS122 is seeking an intern in Creative Technology! Wanna learn or improve web/video skills? Starts at 6 hours/ wk. Email [email protected]

  • @handrews91, thanks for sharing your #OUTHERE moment with us!

  • RT @handrews91: Getting escorted out of an airport by the police when I was 13 years old for streaking . #OUTHERE @PS122

  • #Contest! Tell us how your OUTHERE thru photo/video & win #COIL15 tix. Tag @PS122 & #OUTHERE! http://t.co/Ap25x2Rgq2 http://t.co/c30tLQJztP

  • What's your most OUTHERE moment? Tell us via photo or video and win tickets to #COIL15! Tag @ps122 &… http://t.co/HwsHBf8zti

  • RT @hyperjetlag: A visionary, arts manager, artist and exceptional data cruncher - Jane Chu courtesy of Rocco Landsman. @NEAarts @LincolnCe…

  • RT @OPERAAmerica: "Think of technology as another limb & humanize it." -Robert Battle of Alvin Ailey #buildingartsaudiences