Welcome to the Annenberg Center Live 2017-2018 season!

I’m thrilled to share the 2017-2018 season with you, a vibrant renewal of the Annenberg Center’s proud history of presenting innovative and diverse work across dance, music, theatre and film. We’re incredibly excited to present four world premieres, nine Philadelphia premieres, six Philadelphia debuts and over 14 Annenberg Center debuts. This season is truly one for the record books.

Serving as our inaugural artist-in-residence, the profoundly talented and singular choreographer Mark Morris creates a month-long focus on dance set to American music through performances by Mark Morris Dance Group (returning to Philadelphia after a 14 year absence) and a series of four mini-musical films, each showcasing a wide breadth of dance expression and music style. And, Mark Morris Dance Group is just one of six dance ensembles that will grace our stages this season, including Benjamin Millepied‘s L.A. Dance Project, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Raphael Xavier and, direct from Havana, DanzAbierta.

To highlight our culture-rich city, we’ve created a season brimming with collaborations with many Philadelphia partners, including FringeArts, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, BalletX and Pig Iron Theatre Company. Plus, we shine light on the pulsating energy of Cuba’s arts scene through a three-week Cuba Festival, showcasing some of the country’s finest emerging talents along with icons you know and love.

Two amazing theatre works will have their world premiere on the Annenberg Center stage. Our season opens with Pig Iron Theatre Company’s A Period of Animate Existence, a synthesis of theatre, music and design co-commissioned with FringeArts as part of the 2017 Fringe Festival. Created by the Obie-winning, Brooklyn-based theatre company Ripe Time and inspired by best-selling writer Haruki Murakami's short story, Sleep catapults its unlikely heroine from sleep-deprived state to an explosive deconstruction of her life. Plus, the humorous one-man show, Sancho: An Act of Remembrance, starring creator, writer and celebrated Royal Shakespeare Company actor Paterson Joseph has its Philadelphia debut.

Our diverse offering of musical artists, from jazz and world to classical and hip-hop, has something for everyone. We will infuse our theatres with family performances, holiday celebrations, film screenings and new shows added throughout the year. Whether you’re joining us for the first time or are a regular patron, there’s never been a better time to experience the arts at the Annenberg Center. Please join me for this bold, exciting season!


Christopher A. Gruits

Executive & Artistic Director


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