Members can reserve tickets NOW, the public can reserve tickets on June 26.
“The writer must earn money in order to be able to live and write, but he must by no means live and write for the purpose of making money.” – Karl Marx
Taking these words to heart, NYU Skirball will present a pay-what-you-think-it’s-worth, two-week commemoration of the great philosopher’s 200th birthday. Admission to all performances is free: however, audiences will receive an invoice detailing the cost of every element of the production (supply). They are then free to determine the worth of the production and donate accordingly (demand) thus enabling the artists to “earn money in order to live and write.”
Karl Marx (1818–83), revolutionary economist, philosopher and author of The Communist Manifesto, was one of the most influential figures of all time. Curated by Jay Wegman and inspired by Marxist writings on the perils of capitalism, class struggle and socialism, the festival features works that represent aspects of Marx’s theories: P Project (the effects of capitalism); Labor Brujx (the oppression of the proletariat) and Non-Western (economics). Special events include panels, talks by international philosophers and the premiere of Choral Marx, a choral adaptation of Marx’s Manifesto.
IVO DIMCHEV: P PROJECT
P Project tests Marx’s theories on capitalism by offering audiences cold, hard cash in exchange for a performance. Ivo Dimchev is a Bulgarian performing artist, known internationally for his provocative and often controversial works of performance art. P Project (2012) is an escalating, interactive performance where actual cash fuels participation based on several P words, such as Piano, Pray, Pussy, Poetry, Poppers, and so on. The People will be offered several opportunities to Participate in the P Project, for which they be Paid quite well.
Ivo Dimchev, is a Bulgarian choreographer, visual artist, singer-songwriter, now living in London. His work is extreme and colorful mixtures of performance art, dance, theater, music, drawings and photography. Dimchev has created over 30 pieces, has received numerous international awards, and has presented his work across Europe, South America and North America. He is the founder and director of Bulgaria’s Humarts Foundation, organizes an annual competition for contemporary Bulgarian choreography, is an Artist in Residence at Kaaitheater in Brussels, and tours extensively. In 2014, he opened MOZEI in Sofia, Bulgaria, as an independent space for presenting contemporary art and music. ivodimchev.com
This piece is recommended for ages 16+
LUCIANA ACHUGAR: LABOR BRUJX
Labor Brujx, a world premiere, ritualizes the labor of the dancers, exposing and transcending it to unearth the powerful and primal magic brujx within them. As in all of achugar’s [sic] work it proposes DANCE as the necessary transformational healing for our time. Labor Brujx resists western assumptions of beauty and hierarchical order, freeing the dancers both of their role as worker in the power structure within the creative project and of the universal shame of being animal-sexual-powerful-instinctive creatures.
luciana achugar, a Brooklyn-based choreographer from Uruguay, has been making work in NYC and Uruguay independently and collaboratively since 1999. She is a two-time Bessie Award recipient and was nominated for a 2016 Bessie for Outstanding Production for her latest An Epilogue for OTRO TEATRO: True Love. She was a 2017 Alpert Award recipient, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grantee, amongst other accolades. She was one of Dance Magazine’s 2012 “25 to Watch” and her Bessie Award-winning work PURO DESEO was named one of 2010 Time Out/NY’s “Best of Dance.” Her works also include The Pleasure Project and OTRO TEATRO. lachugar.org
This piece is recommended for ages 16+
MY BARBARIAN: NON-WESTERN
A NYC premiere set in the California Republic of 1848, Non-Western is a quick-change musical fantasy that plays with the tropes of the Western genre. Economic desires motivate its figures, from ranchero to coyote, all of whom are portrayed by the three members of My Barbarian in an unstable exchange of costumes, puppets, action figures and projections. Even as class drama drives the plot, the colonial situation confuses a Marxist analysis, and signals the kinds of appropriations and adaptations Marxist critique undergoes in the non-West. Songs include “Toward a Leftist Positionality” and “The Form of Personal Property.”
My Barbarian is a performance group made up of Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon, and Alexandro Segade. Their work plays with social difficulties and theatricalizes historic problems. Since 2000, they have presented work in major venues internationally, in solo and group exhibitions, museum programs and theater festivals. They were included in two Performa Biennials, two California Biennials, the Biennale de Montréal, and the Whitney Biennial. They’ve received awards and fellowships from United States Artists, Foundation for contemporary Art, Art Matters and the City of Los Angeles. mybarbarian.com
CHORAL MARX: MANIFESTO FOR THE COMMUNIST PARTY IN EIGHT MOVEMENTS
Choral Marx is a singing adaptation of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels’s Manifesto for the Communist Party. It is a piece for mixed chorus—mixed not just in terms of gendered voice parts but also in terms of training and ability—made up of vocalists from both the contemporary music scene and socialist organizing communities, accompanied by an ensemble of five cellos and five flutes. It is an attempt to re-sound Marx and Engels’s 1848 critique of capitalism in 2018 and explore how the Manifesto continues to resonate today.
Ethan Philbrick, a Brooklyn-basedcomposer and writer, has performed original work in New York at BRIC, SculptureCenter, Abrons Arts Center and the Grey Art Gallery. His writing has been published in TDR, PAJ, Women and Performance, Studies in Gender and Sexuality and Movement Research Performance Journal. He teaches in the MFA in Performance + Performance Studies Program at Pratt Institute. ethanphilbrick.com