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2009 a brief review

Founder’s Hall, Girard College “nothing but what is therein contained” by Steve Roden


Armory of the First Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry, “Battle Hymns” by David Lang and Leah Stein with Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia and Leah Stein Dance Company

Hidden City Philadelphia was presented by Peregrine Arts May 30 – June 28, 2009. The festival featured ten works by leading local and international artists created for nine sites throughout the city. Critical and visitor response was overwhelming, with all performances and tours sold out. The locations selected for Hidden City Philadelphia are all important landmarks of the city’s cultural history, but for various reasons, had become lesser known or forgotten. Each artist work, whether it was a performance piece or visual installation, was inspired by a site and created to animate and interpret its history for visitors. Six of the sites were home to visual arts installations, which were free and open to the public from 11am to 7pm on Saturdays and Sundays during the festival. Three locations housed music and dance pieces and were accessible on performance days. Visitors experienced the festival through bus tours, volunteer docents, an innovative card game for children and families, a dynamic website, and portable fold-out map.

Hidden City Philadelphia was the recipient of a Philadelphia City Paper Choice Award ’09.For the announcement featured in City Paper’s “Big Vision Issue,” Shaun Brady wrote,

Whatever form it takes going forward, Hidden City will remain valuable for giving local and international artists a source of new inspiration, and the cobwebbed corners of Philly’s architecture orphans new life.

Metropolitan Opera House, “Revival” by Wally Cardona and Phil Kline with Group Motion Dance Company

…Hidden City…has produced a new monument on the Philadelphia art scene, indeed, one that deserves credit on a far wider scale…. It is hard to recall an artistic endeavor in Philadelphia that has generated as much stimulation and buzz as Hidden City.

Peter Burwasser, Philadelphia City Paper


Disston Saw Works, “Running True” by John Phillips and Carolyn Healy

Stimulating the economy...

Developing new audiences for arts and heritage...

Expenditures by Organization & Attendees


Full-Time Equivalent Jobs


Resident Household Income


State & Local Government Revenue


Impact figures are estimated based on Hidden City project and attendee expenditures using the 2008 Economic Impact Calculator developed by the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance.

Hidden City was envisioned from the beginning as an engagement tool for developing new audiences for the contemporary arts. Most people were attracted to the adventure of exploring new spaces. Along the way they also explored new art forms. Hidden City drew both arts and history enthusiasts, as well as the purely curious urban adventurer. Organization

Hidden City Audience

Average Regular Audience per program

Group Motion Dance Company



Leah Stein Dance Company



Network for New Music



Inspiring dialogue about new futures... Hidden City inspired much conversation about new uses and futures for some of its sites. Girard College is considering more programmatic use of the third floor of Founder’s Hall. The drop forge building of Disston Saw Works is no longer slated for demolition, and has found new use through an industrial tenant. Hidden City fueled conversations at Shiloh Baptist Church about its future use as a community and cultural center.

(Re)connecting people to place… Hidden City’s most touching legacy was its value as a connector (or re-connector) of people and places. Jonathan Stein... writing for The Broad Street Review noted that “... the final phase of an artwork is the audience engagement, and indeed one of the most exciting elements of these installations was the visitors’ interaction with the sites and with each other…” He experienced...

at Shiloh, a nine-year-old tour guide who was baptized at the church a year before; at Disston… workers who could identify the sounds of their particular machines in the art; visitors at the Royal Theater who remembered the “Tip-Top” talent show and “Kiddie Hour” from more than four decades ago; a volunteer, whose great grandfather was a lamp lighter at the Old Met; and ... retired Inquirer workers who came back to see a “new” part of their old workplace.


Founder’s Hall, Girard College “nothing but what is therein contained” by Steve Roden

Visual Installation Sites

Visitors came from New Jersey, Maryland,

95% adult and 5% children

Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, North Carolina,

82% from the City of Philadelphia

Kansas, California, Florida, Delaware, Nevada,

15% from Greater Philadelphia (Tri-State area)

Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana, Virginia, Washington,

3% from outside the United States

Georgia, Connecticut, as well as Denmark, Canada,

Top three visited sites were Founder’s Hall, Disston Saw Works, and Mother Bethel AME Church

England, Scotland, and Germany

Performance Sites

Visitor Behavior

100% sold out (or oversold)

Peak visiting hours were 2 - 3pm

Blend of partner core audiences (local) and visual installation site visitors Largest performance work audience was the Old Metropolitan Opera

An average of 53% of audiences visited more than one site Of these multi-site visitors, 25% visited ALL of the sites Top three awareness drivers were The Philadelphia Inquirer, word of mouth, and chance encounter or radio

There were a large number of highly local attendees, often within a four to five city block radius of each site. Many neighborhood visitors said they were visiting “their” site for the first time, indicating that there is a disconnect between local heritage assets and Philadelphia residents. Top performing neighborhoods were Temple, Queen Village, Francisville, Girard, Graduate Hospital, and Center City, owing to the proximity of these neighborhoods to festival sites. (These neighborhood designations do not represent official nomenclature. These terms were those consistently supplied by visitors during data collection.)

Engagement …the ghost of a glorious past lingers… even as present and future possibilities are pondered—and that’s precisely part of the goals of Hidden City Philadelphia. Naila Francis, Bucks County Courier Times


Mother Bethel AME Church, “Constellation” by Sanford Biggers

…maybe the quilts and celestial symbols used in…. artist Sanford Biggers’ piece at Mother Bethel AME Church… will inspire further research into one of Philadelphia’s most famous stops on the Underground Railroad.

Naila Francis, The Intelligencer

Future German Society of Pennsylvania, “Der Sandman” by Stan Douglas

Education & Family:

With the success of Hidden City Philadelphia 2009, we are looking forward to developing its scope and impact, as we start planning for 2012.

We hope to develop educational programs and partnerships with local K-12 schools and institutions of higher education. Through such programs we will also be able to improve our outreach families. Hidden City can be a powerful experiential education tool for young people, as well as a reason for our college graduates to stay in Philadelphia.

Community: Participation of local communities in the development of projects varied highly from project to project in 2009. For the future we wish to develop a more uniform approach to community engagement, so we can develop true “neighborhood experiences.“

Local Economic Impact: Through creating more in-depth neighborhood experiences, we want to be involved in directly driving patrons to local businesses. In addition, we hope to develop a means through which direct funds may be raised for participating sites.

Live Game: Building on the positive reception of the Hidden City Philadelphia card game, we plan to explore creating a “live” citywide game, marrying the best of education and entertainment.

Pavilion: The architecture firm of KieranTimberlake Associates designed a temporary pavilion on Broad Street for the 2009 festival that could not be realized owing to a reduced budget. For the future, we would like to realize the vision of a central “hub” for disseminating information, offering programs, and social interaction.

Shiloh Baptist Church, “Sonambulo” by Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle

Specters seemed to loom everywhere; musicians, warriors, poets, preachers, divas; they all floated in and out of the myriad and varied presentation.

Peter Burwasser, Philadelphia City Paper

Creators Royal Theater, “Songs from the New Royality” by Todd Reynolds, Bill Morrison, and Laurie Olinder with Network for New Music

Production Thaddeus Squire, President, Peregrine Arts Jay Wahl, Managing Producer, Peregrine Arts Becca Bernstein, Director of Development & Administration, Peregrine Arts Sarah L. Hunter, Samuel S. Fels Research Intern & Research Coordinator Jordan Rockford, Managing Curator (2006-2007) Perry Fertig, Technical Director Josh Schulman, Lighting Director Derek Hachkowski, Master Electrician Nick Kourtides, Sound Advisor Rebecca Starr, Administrative Assistant Victoria Lewis, Administrative Intern Catherine Pidgeon, Production Assistant Peter Escalada-Mastick, Electrician Paul Moffitt, Electrician Shelley Hicklin, Electrician

Site Co-Producing Partners Armory of the First Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry Disston Saw Works Founder’s Hall, Girard College German Society of Pennsylvania Metropolitan Opera House Mother Bethel AME Church Royal Theater Shiloh Baptist Church The Philadelphia Inquirer

Kala Moses Baxter, Tour Actor Jay Wahl & Andrew White, Script Writers Lime Projects, Game Consultants

Kathleen Forde Terry Fox Christian Marclay Richard Torchia Stephen Vitiello

Charrette Participants (June 2008) Robert Cheetham, Avencia Incorporated Medard Gable, Big Picture Small World John Andrew Gallery, Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia Mark Gisi, Tabula Studio Matty Hart, Solutions for Progress Daniel O. Kelly, FAIA, MGA Partners Architects Laris Kreslins & Kendra Gaeta, Lime Projects Bruce Laverty, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia

Joseph E.B. Elliott, Architectural Site Photographer Shari Goldenberg, Architectural Site Photographer David Kessler, Videographer J.J. Tiziou, Performance & Neighborhood Photographer Ryan Donnell, Textile Photographer

Marketing & Visitor Services Amy Harting, Box Office Manager Andrew White, Marketing Coordinator Ed Tettemer, Messaging Consultant Jesse Schlabach, Design Intern Tabula Studio, Website & Graphic Design Braithwaite Communications, Publicity Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation Fairmount Park Commission Dutch Umbrella

Ars Nova Workshop Group Motion Dance Company Leah Stein Dance Company Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia Network for New Music Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia

Christopher Dougherty, Fairmount Park Commission

Artistic Advisors

Documentation Tour & Game

Artistic Co-Producing Partners

Jim McGorman, SBK Pictures Roz McPherson, The Roz Group Michael Norris, ArtReach Derrick Pitts, The Franklin Colin Ripley & Geoffrey Thün, RVTR Michelle Schmitt, Metropolitan Philadelphia Indicators Project Susan Seifert, Social Impact of the Arts Project

Historical Advisors Elizabeth Laurent Bruce Laverty Bryant Simon

Harris Steinberg, AIA, Penn Praxis

City of Philadelphia Gary Steuer, Chief Cultural Officer John Higgins, Department of Licenses & Inspections

Architectural Advisors Atkin Olshin Schade Architects KieranTimberlake Associates MGA Partners Architects

Supporters Visual installations by Sanford Biggers, Stan Douglas, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle, Aleksandra Mir, and Steve Roden were supported through the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, through the Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative, and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. “Revival” by Wally Cardona and Phil Kline was supported through Group Motion Dance Company by the Argosy Foundation, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through Dance Advance, the William Penn Foundation, Independence Foundation, and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. “Battle Hymns” by Leah Stein and David Lang was supported through the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia by the Presser Foundation and the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, and through Leah Stein Dance Company through The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through Dance Advance, and The William Penn Foundation.

Philadelphia Inquirer Building, “Newsroom 2009” by Aleksandra Mir

“Songs for the New Royality” by Todd Reynolds, Bill Morrison, and Laurie Olinder was supported through Network for New Music by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through the Philadelphia Music Project, The Argosy Contemporary Music Fund, The Dietrich Foundation, The Musical Fund Society, Presser Foundation, The William Penn Foundation, the Marshall Reynolds Trust, the Aaron Copland Fund, the Philadelphia Cultural Fund, and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

General support for Hidden City Philadelphia was provided by:

In-Kind Support


The University of the Arts Athenaeum of Philadelphia Walnut Street Theater Blick Art Materials The Prince Music Theater Young Scholars Charter School Philadelphia Live Arts Festival & Philly Fringe West Chester University of Pennsylvania

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts The Hess Foundation Pennsylvania Humanities Council Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation Samuel S. Fels Fund

Individuals Lori Aghazarian Heath Allen Andrea J. Braslove Peter and Miriam Burwasser Gene Coleman

Penelope and Andrei Constantinidi Clare Cotugno David Deery Anthony DeFlorio, III Christine Deutsch Allitia DiBernardo Rollo Dilworth Robin Eaton David Elderkin Mike Felker Graham Finney Matthew Fisher Leonard Frank

Aaron Goldblatt Matthew Goldfine Joanne Harmelin Amy Harting Lydia Hunn Job Itzkowitz Gay G. Johnson Len Karp Lorna Kent Muriel Kirkpatrick Harry Kyriakodis Elizabeth Layberger Elizabeth Main Sherri Meade

Ross Mitchell Sue Moore Glenavie Norton Christopher Plant Vanaja V. Ragavan Jeanne Ruddy Kim Sajet Ellen Beth Siegel Vicki Squire Andre C. Stephano Constantine and Jan Stephano Thomas Taggart Senator Constance Williams Barbara Zalkind

c/o Peregrine Arts Crane Arts Building, Suite 412 1400 North American Street Philadelphia, PA 19122-3803 Shiloh Baptist Church, “Like Lambs” by Steven Earl Weber

T 267 597 3808

F 215 763 7140

Hidden City Philadelphia 2009 Report  

Hidden City Philadelphia 2009 Findings report by Tabula Studio for Peregrine Arts