Thirteenth annual ‘Table of Silence Project 9/11’ at NYC’s Lincoln Center and streaming live

On Monday, September 11, 2023, at 8:05 am, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and Buglisi Dance Theatre, as a project of the Arnhold Dance Innovation Fund and through community partnerships with Dance/NYC, Chelsea Factory, The Juilliard School, Gibney Dance Center, Martha Graham Center, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Steps on Broadway, and others, present an in-person and livestreamed performance of the Table of Silence Project 9/11, an annual free public performance ritual and multi-cultural call to action for peace and healing. Conceived and choreographed by Artistic Director Jacqulyn Buglisi to commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11 in 2011, the event, now in its thirteenth year, aims to bridge boundaries in a shared experience for compassion and unity.

Lloyd Knight, Table of Silence Project 9/11, Reimagined, 2021. Photo by Paul B. Goode.

During the time of the pandemic, the project was reimagined with both virtual and in-person elements. Streamed live around the world, it has reached an international viewership of more than 4.4 million people to date and is growing in all 50 states and throughout 235 countries and territories. The special event continues to evolve as a healing ritual, relevant to the present-day issues facing humanity, inclusive of environmental and social justice, and freedom for all people suffering from systemic oppressions. According to Buglisi, “Together, through a timeless universal language of the body, we transcend all boundaries, recognizing the imperative for human connection and the miracle that is human existence.”

This year, the company will present the original full-scale form of the work with elements of the reimagined version. Artistic collaborators for the 2023 program include Buglisi Dance Theatre Co-Founder, Conductor, and Principal Dancer Terese Capucilli, Principal Dancer Virginie Mécène, Composer and Violinist Daniel Bernard Roumain, Conch and Flute Musician John Ragusa, Sopranos Ximena Borges and Carla López-Speziale, Film and Livestream Producer Nel Shelby and Nel Shelby Productions, and more than 150 dancers.

Table of Silence Project 9/11, 2022. Photo by Hisae Aihara.

The performance begins with the sound of a conch shell’s Call to Action, as the multitude of dancers slowly ascend onto Lincoln Center’s Josie Robertson Plaza, creating improvisational stories of grief and hope, followed by a prologue on electric violin. Then, moving to the plaintive strains of the flute, the heartbeat of bass drums, trumpet, bells and the cries of a chorus, the dancers form patterns of three concentric circles around the iconic Revson Fountain to create an ancient Peace Labyrinth, while repeating twelve symbolic ritualistic gestures ten times.

This sacred landscape becomes filled with the transcendent energy of the Mandala, connecting dancers and viewers to the healing rituals of the natural world. Hidden in the pocket of the dancers’ robe is a ceramic plate sculpture, a metaphor for a gathering of humanity at the banquet table for peace. At 8:46 am, the dancers turn their wrists with open palms and extend their arms to the sky for 60 seconds in a gesture of universal peace.

“We are proud to present this stunning work, and hope it provides an opportunity for New Yorkers and viewers around the world to honor those lost,” said Shanta Thake, Chief Artistic Officer of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. “The arts are pivotal to finding community, solace, and collective understanding as we move forward. We’re honored to present this project year after year with Buglisi Dance Theatre.”

Table of Silence Project 9/11. Photo by Terri Gold.

Table of Silence Project 9/11 plays on Monday, September 11, 2023, beginning at 8:05 am, at Josie Robertson Plaza, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, 140 West 65th Street, NYC. The event is General Admission, first-come first-served; tickets and masks are not required. It will also be livestreamed, free of charge, on the website.


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