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Thu, Dec 14


Martin E. Segal Theater Center

WORLD THEATRE / US THEATRE - Presenting Contemporary Circus in NYC (Panel + Screenings)

Panel and all-day screenings on contemporary circus and movement arts in the United States.

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WORLD THEATRE / US THEATRE - Presenting Contemporary Circus in NYC (Panel + Screenings)
WORLD THEATRE / US THEATRE - Presenting Contemporary Circus in NYC (Panel + Screenings)

Time & Location

Dec 14, 2023, 2:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Martin E. Segal Theater Center, 365 5th Ave, New York, NY 10016, USA


About the event

A day devoted to contemporary circus and movement practice in the United States, with a panel discussion (5:00 pm) + two film screenings (2:00 pm-5:00 pm + 7:00 pm-8:30 pm).



Segal Theatre, 365 Fifth Ave @ 34 Str.

5:00 pm Panel: Presenting Contemporary Circus in NYC: New Audiences / Global Connections

US audiences have been slow to awake to circus' recent (r)evolution. Gone are the tired old stunts, ethically questionable human displays, clown cars, and elephants. Thrillingly diverse, poetic, personal, contemporary artistic expressions by diverse global artists now flourish in public plazas, theatres and tents across the world. Meet NYC area presenters, producers, and curators whose diligent research and bold programming choices have enabled audiences to experience some of the most unusual post-pandemic live performances on NYC area stages. Learn about recent North American premieres of contemporary circus works from Guinea, France, and Cambodia; upcoming projects; and innovative collaborative efforts to support new creation in the discipline.

Speakers include Lindsey Buller Maliekel (New Victory Theater), Xavier Gobin (Phare Circus), Lori Jones (The Quick Center for the Performing Arts ), Elena Siyanko (PS21), Jedediah Wheeler (Commissioner, In the Fire), Ruth Juliet Wikler (International Market for Contemporary Circus, Montreal/Clark College, WA) and others.

Curated by Ruth Juliet Wikler in collaboration with Frank Hentschker.

Photo: Amoukanama Circus, Guinean acrobats, dancers, and musicians recreate the drama of their migration from Conakry to Europe. Part of Crellin Park Day at Performance Spaces for the 21st Century/PATHWAYS, Chatham NY. Photo by Doug Stalker.

Selected Screenings - Curated and presented by Josh Aviner, Hideaway Circus


2:00 pm - 4:45 pm

Circus Docs: Traditional Circus Documentaries from the Hideaway Circus Collection

Curated and presented by Josh Aviner, Hideaway Circus

7:00 pm

Cirque du Cambodia (Dir. Joel Gershon, 2020)

Introduction by Joel Gershon and Bonthoeun Houn, the Cambodian artistic director of Phare Circus + Q & A after screening

Cirque du Cambodia follows the journey of two youths who live out every child's fantasy - to run away from home and join the circus. But not just any circus - they dream of taking the stage with Cirque du Soleil, the largest theatrical company in the world. Their home, a poor village in the ancient, faraway Kingdom of Cambodia, makes their quest even more extraordinary....

Joel Gershon is a journalist, documentary filmmaker and has taught as a professor in media studies abroad and in the U.S. In 2017, he came back to the U.S. after living in Bangkok for 12 years, where he worked as a TV reporter and producer, and as a writer. He discovered the magical arts school featured in the film, Phare Ponleu Selpak, while traveling in Battambang, Cambodia in 2011, and from that experience, “Cirque du Cambodia” was born. He chased this extraordinary story through four countries over eight years, capturing two young Cambodians improbable quest to become the first from their country to perform with Cirque du Soleil.

Presented by The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center in collaboration with Ruth Juliet Wikler.

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