Shifting Contexts

Ways of Thinking About Contemporary Performance

some sentences and paragraphs on rendering rooms in the form of books

Karinne Keithley Syers

I made notes for a long time, then chose three categories, three containers: survive, blazon, submit. BLAZON. I met this word as a verb while studying the plays of Christopher Marlowe. To blazon, poetically, is to extol the virtues and beauty of the subject of your writing. The gesture is heraldic, as if you, the author, can see the secret imprint of the soul of your cherished thing, can describe its face in the immutable terms of a coat of arms, something persisting through time that is also related to life blood, to energy, to presence.…

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About this project


This project was made possible through funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation grant for Building Demand for the Arts.


Shifting Contexts was conceived by Claudia La Rocco with significant contributions from Michelle Ellsworth. Additional contributions from Megan Metcalf, Thomas J. Lax, Katherine Profeta, cecilia lisa eliceche, Heather Kravas, Victoria Brooks, Ryan Jenkins, Siobhan Burke, Jennifer Krasinski, Alexandra Pappas, Maxe Crandall, Katy Dammers, Karinne Keithley Syers, Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography, Carla Peterson, Chris Cameron, Jeffrey Gan, Noemie Solomon, Harmony Bench, Sima Belmar, Sydney Skybetter, Bailey Anderson, Jennifer Salk, Lodi McCellan, Janice Ross, Thomas F. DeFrantz, Onye Ozuzu, RenéeArchibald, Rebecca Rossen, Tonya Lockyer, and Rashaun Mitchell.

This project had numerous contributions from On the Boards staff members including Lane Czaplinski, Sarah Wilke, Betsey Brock, Beth Raas-Bergquist, and Erica Bower Reich. The final iteration of the project was managed by Artistic Director, Rachel Cook with significant assistance from Curatorial Intern, Jordan Macintosh-Hougham.

Video Editing by Elliat Graney-Saucke | Elliat Creative
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Consultation by Surale Phillips
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