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Highlights: On The Boards (Seattle, Washington)

On The Boards (Seattle, Washington)

On the Boards is a non-profit contemporary performing arts organization located in the lower Queen Anne neighborhood of Seattle. Founded by artists in 1978, their programming supports the development of artists and companies who are creating ground-breaking new work that would otherwise not be seen in Seattle.

We were among the first organizations in the country to present and premiere breakthrough performances by visionary, internationally recognized artists such as Laurie Anderson, Bill T. Jones, Spalding Gray, The Wooster Group, dumb type, Needcompany, Sankai Juku, Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker and many others.

Similarly, we have supported some of the first performances by talented regional artists like 33 Fainting Spells, Sarah Rudinoff, Maureen Whiting Company, Seattle Chamber Players, Allen Johnson, locust, and “Awesome,” all of whom have gone on to build a significant national following. As the first organization to present these and other emerging artists in the Northwest, OtB plays a vital role in the regional and national cultural ecology.

From 1978 to 1998, OtB presented programs in the historic Washington Hall in Seattle’s Central District. OtB moved into its current space in 1998 and now presents more than 40 shows over 100 performance nights each year in 2 theaters. Our 300-seat Merrill Wright Mainstage Theater and our intimate 84-seat Studio Theater are both equipped with state-of-the-art technology.


[singlepic id=177 w= h= float=]After 6 years at the top of OtB’s programming wish list, Argentinean choreographer Diana Szeinblum finally makes her Seattle debut with Alaska, a sensual portrayal of memory and loneliness featuring 4 gorgeous dancers. Szeinblum uses dark humor, extreme physicality, original music and a minimal set to create a beautiful spectacle that gravitates between uneasy stillness and violent frenzy. Her career began with the prestigious contemporary Ballet of the San Martin General Theater and continued at the Folkwang Tanz Schule, where she danced under the artistic direction of Pina Bausch. Her performances have toured across Europe, Asia and the US.

November 5-8, 2009 at 8pm


[singlepic id=178 w= h= float=]Stripped of the posturing and booming bass associated with hip hop, Bruno Beltrão’s H3 mines the movement vocabulary of the streets of Rio de Janeiro without the usual cultural baggage. The Brazilian choreographer’s company Grupa de Rua features 9 male dancers performing hypnotizing solos, duets and group work while incorporating elements of krumping, popping and floor-spins against a sparse electronic soundtrack ranging from classical music to sampled loops of the dancer’s screeching shoes. A hot ticket on the international festival circuit, H3 originally premiered at the Kunsten Festival des Arts (Belgium) and has been performed at such
venues as Festival TransAmériques (Montreal), Sadler Well’s (London), Singapore Arts Festival and Fest mit Pina (Berlin).

January 28-31, 2010


[singlepic id=179 w= h= float=]Each spectator in Best Before is a single pixel or anonymous avatar in the creation of virtual city. Over the course of the performance, a simulated city begins to emerge as the audience controls the fate of the 200 people gathered in the theater. The game is introduced, framed and commented on by “experts from daily life” who make their living as renegade game developers and city workers who present danger signs in urban traffic. Those who play decide the outcome of this community and whether it will survive or collapse. Founded in 2000, Rimini Protokoll has created over 20 new works of theater, often using non-actors and non-theatrical spaces and is recognized as being among the leaders and creators of the theatre movement known as “Post Dramatic Theater” (Theater der Zeit).

May 6-9, 2010

View the full season here.

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Caden Manson is a director, media artist, and teacher. He is co-founder of the media ensemble and network, blog, and publisher, He has co-created, directed, video- and set designed 18 Big Art Group productions. Manson has shown video installations in Austria, Germany, NYC, and Portland; performed PAIN KILLER in Berlin, Singapore and Vietnam; Taught in Berlin, Rome, Paris, Montreal, NYC, and Bern; the ensemble has been co-produced by the Vienna Festival, Festival d’Automne a Paris, Hebbel Am Ufer, Rome’s La Vie de Festival, PS122, and Wexner Center for The Arts. Caden is a 2001 Foundation For Contemporary Art Fellow, is a 2002 Pew Fellow and a 2011 MacDowell Fellow. Writing has been published in PAJ, Theater Magazine, and Theater der Zeit. Caden is currently an associate professor and graduate directing option coordinator of The John Wells Directing Program at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama.

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