"Trial/Prison", from Einstein in the HOUSE
We are an artist-led experimental performing arts organization.
We value the whole artist; Artists as creators who do not fit into one discipline, as individuals with unique life experiences, as people who want to be heard.
We produce experimental music-theater. Our specialty is art that is self-actualized, intimate, sincere, and self-aware.
We commission new works and reimagine existing works. We hold ourselves accountable as an organization based in the United States to work against systems of oppression by actively engaging artists from marginalized identities.
Fifth Wall Performing Arts began its life in an Ann Arbor living room, where founders Karl and Grey produced an adaptation of Philip Glass' "Einstein on the Beach", entitled "Einstein in the HOUSE". The wildly successful event, the video of which was tweeted by Philip Glass (twice) and called "bonkers insane brilliant" by Nico Muhly, was the catalyst for Fifth Wall to continue their work producing new works of experimental theatre and music. Since then, Fifth Wall has premiered Grey Grant's folk-opera, "Michigan Trees" in Michigan and New York City, presented two festivals of historic Fluxus works and new Fluxus-inspired compositions, and inaugurated team member Maya Johnson's storytelling audio series, "Black Hearts, Black Voices".
What does "Fifth Wall" mean?
We believe the future of live performance is one that not only acknowledges the existence of the audience and the stage (the fourth wall), but one that opens a fifth wall, acknowledging the existence of the performers themselves as human beings, vulnerable and in need of connection as we are.