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.

  • RT @mxjustinVbond: Hedwig star Neil Patrick Harris will be performing at the @PS122 Spring Gala co-chaired by Michael Stipe and myself. htt…

  • Viewed the proofs of the beautifully crafted #GALA14 honoree awards by @swarovski. #crystals for days! #diamonds in the #diamondhorseshoe!

  • Was researching for @PS122 #GALA14 & came across this love...https://t.co/mu8aro6STS piano by our musical dir @LanceHorne #nailedit #coffee

  • RT @erstheater: Our gift to @RuthBGinsburg: the collar Susie wears in #Arguendo. She says she'll wear it in court tomorrow! http://t.co/h89…

  • Everyone in this office feels old thanks to @BuzzFeed. #culturaltastemakers #sticktothearts

  • #33rpm Post-show convo btwn Rabih Mroué & Shirin Neshat @AsiaSocietyNY 4/29: http://t.co/98N5udveep with @PS122 & @PENworldvoices

  • @MxRoo @NathAnnCarrera @mxjustinVbond We're having an after-party w/ $30 ticket price! More info coming soon to http://t.co/euTKYvqiRH

  • Honoring the one and only Tom Murrin! @lamamaetc #performance #fullmoon http://t.co/gVOpRJeTM7

  • Very excited to be in the audience for IKE @ NIGHT @jackartsny! http://t.co/mQfCHAJeCV

  • Just a little ditty of a #GALA14 teaser. http://t.co/do3F8JlXvw CC: @THATHollyHughes @ClaraGMiller. Music: @eliotkrimsky. #diamondhorseshoe

  • RT @HalfStraddle: FRANCE + CROATIA !! We had an amazing time w/ "Seagull (Thinking of you)" @PS122 What a tour. XO http://t.co/GhdSxVHY0I

  • Another on the 'to see' list this week! FRIDAY! RT: @jackartsny Gearing up for the last weekend of IKE AT NIGHT! https://t.co/QDBdaKFJPY …

  • RT @hitRECordJoe: Philippe Petit just recommended this to me, because he knows I like Jaques Brel. Incredible dancing.... http://t.co/5jVC…

  • A Rundown of #RAMP: http://t.co/XYSI3ZkRU0 CC: @ChainTheatre @eliotkrimsky @LyfeCompany @erstheater @hyperjetlag @hyperallergic

  • RT @LaMaMaETC: Tomorrow - #auntsisdance FULL MOON SHOW at La MaMa @NOTCHRISTYLER @katypyle @elizabethccooke @dirksgoo @PS122 http://t.co/w5…

  • Rabih Mroué & Lina Saneh are just 2 weeks away! @PENworldvoices @AsiaSocietyNY https://t.co/Ge6ySoZ4YN http://t.co/8TrQZ68kPj

  • Thanks to all who came out to #RAMP these 6 weeks. Special thanks for our artists who took a #RISK to develop new work. @ChainTheatre

  • On our 'to see' list for the week: @nycplayers & Richard Maxwell’s ‘Isolde’ Explores Primal Instincts http://t.co/vaPEBcidrO. @AbronsArtsCtr

  • Kaneza gives notes before photo call. #RAMP http://t.co/GBVxfo7ALZ

  • Pack house for #RAMP! Kaneza Schaal tomorrow, 8pm @chaintheatre. http://t.co/1YBCh6P795