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Press Release, July 2009 metropolis – festival for art and performance in urban space

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Press Release, July 2009


1 - 31 August 2009 in Copenhagen
THE CITY AS STAGE: METROPOLIS FESTIVAL paves the way for unique metropolitan experiences in August 2009. This year, Copenhagen International Theatre will truly transform the city into a stage when artists from, for example, New York, Mexico City, Cape Town and Buenos Aires – in total, 15 different metropolitan cities from all over the world – present productions and city walks created specifically for Copenhagen.
Over 100 performances and installations will permeate the metropolis and give both locals and tourists the opportunity to feel the city’s impulses and experience our city in a completely new way. METROPOLIS will transform the public spaces into a full-scale playground and an oasis of reflection.

Public space productions don’t only create unique moments but also communicate our perception of the diversity and the contradictions of the metropolis. Many of the events are free of charge this year, due to the very fact that they take place in public spaces.

Artistic directors Trevor Davies and Katrien Verwilt say:

METROPOLIS’ fundamental vision of making the city into an artistic axis and transforming ‘the city into a stage and the stage into the city’ has been realised this year. 21 very diverse Danish and international productions created especially for, with and in the city of Copenhagen.”

Created especially for METROPOLIS and the city of Copenhagen

METROPOLIS presents a series of diverse performances and art installations, where the artistic essence of the work is the metropolis. This is not just about works by Danish and international guest performers, but also about works that will either make their debut at METROPOLIS or have been especially developed for METROPOLIS and Copenhagen.

Eight of the works are continuations of projects developed during METROPOLIS LABORATORY 2007 and 2008, which Copenhagen International Theatre arranged in collaboration with DAC and with support from Realdania. These include JAY PATHER, HELLO!EARTH and DOUNG JAHANGEERs city walks, theatre for the senses, CITY PUZZLE by Enrique Vargas, the performances THE ORACLE’S BOAT by SIGNA and VERTICAL EXILE by Sara Gebran with PUBLIC EYE: COLLECTIVE WORK plus submarine ballet by LIVE ART INSTALLATIONS.
Magical Fairytale landscape at Sortedamssøen

This year the festival will open on 1 August at 9.30 pm with a magnificent staging of the Copenhagen lakes, where the French street theatre company ILOTOPIE will display their poetic firework show WATERFOOLS. This may well be the summer’s biggest outdoor art event for the whole family and with place for approx. 10 000 people along the banks of Sortedamssøen.

From the city centre to the outskirts of the metropolis

The inner city streets will be turned into stage settings. The Argentinean director MARIANO PENSOTTI will transform the mythical Blågårdsgade into a narrative cityscape. Experience the Mexico City street hawkers in Copenhagen’s historical city centre, when fourteen Mexican artists create installations and performances around Nikolaj Plads and Kgs. Nytorv. Or, take a trip to the outskirts of Copenhagen and experience the Dutch artist LOTTE VAN DEN BERG’s production in a deserted urban landscape. The prize winning architectonic masterpieces VM Mountain and Tietgenkollegiet in Ørestad create the stage for the French aerial acrobats COMPAGNIE 9.81 and Danish TEATRO GLIMT.

City walks

Experience the city’s secret, curious and overlooked places on unusual city walks by JAY PATHER and DOUNG JAHANGEER, with inspiration from Cape Town and Durban. See the city’s potential for play with the French dance company EX NIHILO, or go on a ’do it yourself’ walk with Danish HELLO!EARTH.

Some of the productions strive to transform ’the stage to metropolis’ like the multi-media masterpiece

CONTINUOUS CITY from New York, about people in a global information society.
21 Danish and international productions

METROPOLIS gathers 21 Danish and international productions in one of Europe’s most groundbreaking festivals of urban art and performance from 1st – 31st August 2009. The budget for METROPOLIS 09 is approx. 7 million DKK. The Danish Arts Council’s Committee for Performing Arts, the Danish Arts Council and the City of Copenhagen provide the primary funding.


For press photos, interviews with the project partners or artists involved, please contact Communications Coordinator, Karen Toftegaard, Copenhagen International Theatre on +45 2298 6743 or

With kind regards
Trevor Davies & Katrien Verwilt

Artistic directors

Copenhagen International Theatre

Also have a look at the FACTS BOXES:

  1. METROPOLIS 2009

  2. METROPOLIS 2007-2017


Facts: METROPOLIS 2009

What and who: Festival for art and performance in urban space



Box office: Københavns Internationale Teater, Vestergade 17, 3. Cph. K., phone +45 3315 1564 at 10-16 hrs on weekdays.
Staging on water:

1st August: ILOTOPIE – ”Waterfools” on Sortedams Søen

7th – 8th August: LIVE ART INSTALLATIONS – ”Ubådsballet” (submarine ballet) in Copenhagen Harbour.
City walks:

3rd – 6th + 9th. August: JAY PATHER – ”Blind Spot” meeting place at Nørreport Station

12th – 16th August: BLAST THEORY –”Rider Spoke” in the Søndermark area, Frederiksberg

20th – 22nd August: GUSTAVO CIRÍACO / ANDREA SONNBERGER – ”Here Whilst We Walk” meeting place at Karrierebar, Copenhagen V

24th – 28th August: DOUNG JAHANGEER – ”Citywalk” meeting place: Town Hall Square, by the bus terminal

25th – 29th August: HELLO!EARTH – ”Tomorrow everything will be differentmeeting place to be announced

The City as Stage:

14th – 16th August: MARIANO PENSOTTI – ”La Marea” on Blågårdsgade, Copenhagen N

25th – 29th August: LOTTE VAN DEN BERG / COMPAGNIE DAKAR – ”Wasteland”, in a desolate area on the edge of the town, meeting place will be announced
Installations in the city:

12th – 17th + 19th – 22nd August: 14 MEXICAN URBAN ARTISTS –”Chilango Hawkers” at Nikolaj Plads and Kgs. Nytorv

18th – 20th August: BERLIN – ”Moscow” at Bertel Thorvaldsens Plads

22nd – 23rd + 26th – 30th August: ARCHITECTS OF AIR –”Amococo” in Byparken, Ørestad City

Interaction, dance and performance in city space:

5th – 8th + 10th – 12th August: ERIK POLD –”The Reality Game” by Niels Brock, Kultorvet

5th – 7th August: EX NIHILO – ”Trajets de vie, Trajets de ville” (”The routes of life, routes in the city”) on Enghave Plads, Axeltorv and Town Hall Square
The city as a playground and an oasis for contemplation:

10th – 15th + 17th – 22nd August: TEATERKUNST – ”Wall2Wall”, meeting place: Frue Plads by the church.

21st – 23rd August: PUBLIC EYE: COLLECTIVE WORK by SARA GEBRAN –”Verticale Exile” at Absalonsgade 8, Copenhagen V
The stage as the city – The Metropole as an artistic landmark:

6th – 8th August: SIGNA – ”The Oracle’s Boat” at Teaterhuset, Elsinore

11th – 13th August: THE BUILDERS ASSOCIATION –”Continuous City” at MusikTeatret Albertslund

14th August – 6th September: ENRIQUE VARGAS –”City Puzzle” at Republique

New Circus and Architecture:

28th – 29th August: TEATRO GLIMT – ”Alene Sammen – et glimt af en kabaret” at Tietgenkollegiet, Ørestad North

28th – 29th August: COMPAGNIE 9.81 –”Coléomur” (”Glued to the wall”) at the Mountain Dwelling, Ørestad City
Facts: METROPOLIS 2007 - 2017

What: METROPOLIS 2007-2017 is 10 years of festivals (uneven years), and development of laboratory projects (even years). Festival and laboratory were launched in 2007 for audience, Danish and foreign artists, established, future and potential partners, press, and last but not least, the city of Copenhagen.

METROPOLIS 2009 will, to a high extent, succeed in the vision of the two paths of the festival – development and presentation of urban art and performance – inasmuch as 8 productions, out of a total of 21 international and Danish productions, saw their first development in the METROPOLIS LABORATORY.

METROPOLIS 2007 spawned 15 different productions presented in and around town. There were a series of  workshops, which had development perspective for the coming years, four installations with sound, pictures, music and bodies in the city, and last but not least, one large opening event in Copenhagen Harbour, (Fritz Lang´s’ ”Metropolis” with live music by Art Zoyd) as well as an outstanding performance in Ørestad City (Circo da Madrugada).

Who: Developed and arranged by Københavns Internationale Teater with primary support from the Arts Council and the Municipality of Copenhagen. Budget approx. DKK 7 mill.

How: METROPOLIS  examines and develops the expression and  power of the city by means of works and processes created by dancers, performers, installation artists, architects and town planners. Read more on

Where and when: METROPOLIS – festival for art and performance in city space takes place 1st – 31st August 2009 in Copenhagen and surrounding areas. METROPOLIS LABORATORY 2010 is planned for the summer of 2010.



What:  Since 1979 Copenhagen International Theatre has produced over 50 large international festivals in Copenhagen, a.o. FOOLS festivals 1980-1985, DANCIN CITY 1990-1996 and IMAGES Festivals. 1996 saw the launch of SOMMERSCENE as well as a series of NEW CIRCUS festivals. METROPOLIS 2007-2017 is a 10-year project with ”the city as stage” and ”the stage as city”.

 In 2009 the focal point is city space. In addition to METROPOLIS, KIT is project manager on the innovative city development project LYSLYD, which, during the month of August, will present projects in 12 selected spaces in and around Copenhagen. Moreover, KIT is co-organiser of the European travelling art festival Black/North SEAS, which will visit Denmark 4th – 18th August. SEAS is presented predominantly in Elsinore and in Helsingborg in collaboration with the street festival PASSAGE09.

More information on

Who: The artistic directors of the theatre are Trevor Davies and Katrien Verwilt.

Budget and financing in 2009: The METROPOLIS 09 budget is approx. DKK 6,5 mill., of which the Danish Arts Council’s Committee for Performing Arts, the Danish Arts Council and the Municipality of Copenhagen are the major supporters. The LYSLYD project is a separate project in co-operation with 10 municipalities, in and around Copenhagen, and 5 other partners. Region Zealand and The Capital Region of Denmark as well as all the other partners, who contribute with funding to the 2009-10 budget, which is a total of DKK 17,7 mill, being covered 50% by the EU. Of the total amount, approx. DKK 5 mill. are used on city space projects in August 2009. Similarly SEAS is co-financed 50% by the EU as well as by partners in several countries, and has a budget of approx. DKK 1,5 mill. in connection with METROPOLIS. All in all DKK 13 mill. for groundbreaking art and performance, which meet the many facets of the city in August 2009.

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