News: London's Open House w/end

Monday 23 September 2002

London Open House Weekend
21 & 22 September 2002.

London’s biggest annual architecture exhibition takes place on 21 & 22 September. In a celebration of contemporary and renowned architecture across the capital, over 500 buildings will open their doors, free of charge, in an event which attracts some 360,000 visitors and continues to grow each year.

As part of this year’s special events, London Open House presents: *Dancing Houses, Dancing Steps*, a unique series of performances specially choreographed in response to the stimulating architectural surroundings of four major dance spaces across London – and the Shipwrights Palace, Deptford.
Stairways and steps are the main focus for this year’s event, the performance takes the viewer to new spaces undiscovered by the public.

Shipwrights Palace, Deptford
‘The House’ Prised Open (under the Artistic Direction of Athina Vahla) An installation performance created specifically for London Open House weekend involving sound, movement, sculpture, film and digital technology.

A fantastic event involving over 18 performers and 8 cutting-edge artists, ‘The House’ is supported by London Arts, The Regional Arts Lottery Programme and others.
As the sun sets over the Thames, ‘The House’ comes alive. Traces of memories stir, rooms become occupied, transporting the audience to a time of adventure, greed but ultimately decay.

Shipwrights Palace, an 18th century house on the banks on the River Thames, is currently lingering in a state of dilapidation prior to renovation, making this a one-off chance to catch ‘The House’ installation performance before the next layer of time is added. With 16th century origins, The Shipwrights Palace is the oldest remaining structure at The Kings Yard, Deptford and a continuing connection to London’s seafaring past.

Shipwrights Palace, Watergate Street, Deptford, SE8
19 – 25 Sept. (performances on both evenings of Open House Weekend). 3 showings nightly from 8.20pm. Admission is free, but advance booking of performance day and time is essential; admission is by tickets only. Box Office: 020 8293 9741

You can also watch a virtual performance online, where at 9pm on performance nights, the door will open…

The Place
Last year, The Place completed a 3 year development, designed by award-winning architects Allies and Morrison. The Place will be opening its doors to the public, who’ll be given the chance to tour behind the scenes of an international dance centre see a unique series of performances specially choreographed in response to the stimulating architectural surroundings.
The tour takes place on the hour, between 12 – 5pm on 21 & 22 Sept. and takes 1 hr. (approx.)
It includes:
Lea Anderson performance on the stairwell at Flaxman Terrace entrance
Taster session by Shift Youth Dance Company (Sat. 1pm & 2pm tours only)
A walk through ‘Field’, a studio installation by Julia Bardsley
Dance photo exhibition by Benedict Johnson
Improvisation performance at Duke’s Road entrance by dance students Rashpal Singh Basal & Will Aitchison (subject to good weather)
Complimentary cup of tea or coffee in the Theatre Bar.
12.45-1.30pm Sunday only Talk by architect Bob Allies and Artistic Director of The Place Richard Alston in the Theatre Bar, Duke’s Road entrance

Greenwich Dance Agency’s
resident dance company Retina, under the direction of Filip Van Huffel, reveals the 1930’s listed Borough Hall’s hidden features with a tour of some of its fourteen stairways. Visitors to the building see Retina animate the building followed by a performance in the vast 1930’s Borough Hall. Gradient investigates the relationship between our nervous system and our natural ability to communicate without words through abstracted and theatrical notions to our senses.
21 Sept. 1pm, 2.30pm & 4pm

Stratford Circus
East London Dance offers the public a chance to explore East London’s newest performance space. Rehearsals, romances, divas and disputes: a vibrant installation of video, movement and sound in the performance specially created by Artistic Director and choreographer, Jo Parkes, filmmaker Anton Califano and composer Graham Jeffery with a diverse and intergenerational cast interacting with Levitt Bernstein’s Stratford Circus.
21 Sept. 5 performances between 2 & 5.30 pm, each one lasting 40 minutes approx. 20 tickets will be allocated for each performance and will be given out on a first come first served basis.

Royal Opera House
Well known to the Royal Opera House, choreographer Tom Sapsford interprets this year’s theme of staircases in a site-specific installation in collaboration with film duo Honey Brothers. The film features a duet integrated with real time visuals conveying the multiplicity of both art and architecture at the Royal Opera House.
22 September from 5pm to 9pm
Free Event – Tickets available from 10am on the day from the walk-up box office.

More details
A Building Guide with dates, times, further details of participating building and special events information will be published on 3 September and will be available in the Evening Standard and from City Hall. Members of the public can find regularly updated recorded information about obtaining copies and other event details by calling the hotline on 09001 600 061 (Calls are charged at 60p/minute) or by visiting

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