goals | philosophy


When we began, we said THE PERFORMANCE LAB™ would create a replicable model for inter-active arts exchanges that brings artists and communities together in different places at the same time.

That goal has in large part been accomplished; now we are refining what we have learned over the years.

In 2007 & beyond, we continue to build a national network of interactive studios to share innovative & exemplary work in all the performing arts. Ultimately, we envisage a world-wide network of such studios, sustained by partnerships that span the globe, connecting young people with their peers & arts organizations with adventuresome institutions in other countries.

THE PERFORMANCE LAB™ works with students and teachers; schools at the elementary, secondary and college level as well as artists, art organizations and communities in Minnesota and across the country. Ultimately, we envisage a network of interactive studios linked together for the sharing of innovative and challenging works in the performing arts.

THE PERFORMANCE LAB™ is uniquely positioned to bring together artists, arts organizations and their communities, including schools, by providing the network that will form the catalyzing core of new audiences, revitalized arts events and new partnerships. Our work extends beyond the arts to influence the core curriculum [New Content Standards in the Schools] and addresses acquisition of cognitive skills, including non-verbal reasoning, expressive ability and social tolerance.

Using existing interactive technology and human resources –– imaginatively re–purposed videoconferencing rooms, handheld mobile cameras and technology–savvy unafraid coaches –– THE PERFORMANCE LAB™ makes it possible to communicate emotion, develop style and coach the performing arts at a distance for audiences of diverse sensibilities and culture, and for those of varying ability.



As is typical of the performing arts in America, arts organizations in Minnesota tend to cluster around the largest metropolitan areas. Yet, as has been suggested by a study commissioned by the McKnight Foundation [Here + Now, 1996], economic uncertainty and the resultant pressure to minimize artistic risks present fewer and more mediocre choices for audiences. The public itself needs "to be educated about and attracted to the arts, tasks that arts groups cannot do alone. Funding decisions over the past decade have eliminated arts classes at many public schools, denying most children the kind of early working relationship with the arts that creates interested and discerning audiences" [page 19 of the above study]. Despite efforts at outreach, this influential study suggests, the arts are not part of daily life, and remain something to "go" to or to save for special occasions. Few would deny that the arts enrich our lives, provide perspective on life’s challenges and speak to the better parts of humankind. Access and knowledge are inseparable partners in the entrepreneurial effort to bring the arts to everyone.

The technology itself disappears.
Only the compelling experience of art remains.


TPL™— !
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666 Fairmount Avenue | Saint Paul, MN 55105-3519
Phone: (651) 224-1555 | Fax: (651) 224-1486
for information about permissions, ©, and Interactive Residencies, contact:
info@theperformancelab.org or beyond.broadcast@mindspring.com