Panel with Michael Kliën and Social Practice CUNY.

Parliament is a pioneering work of situational choreography and exploration of ecological aesthetics. The work offers participants a critically needed withdrawal from normal modes of social action and provides instead an innovative site for twenty-first century experimentalist cooperation. Embedded in the immediacy of Michael Kliën’s choreographic framework, citizen-performers, working in silence, come together to bear witness to and hold council amidst the elemental phenomena and fundamental concerns of collectively lived experience. Pointing towards unseen and unexperienced modes of social organization, Parliament traverses, probes, and navigates the paradigms that animate our present-day political relations.

Choreographer and artist Michael Kliën will speak about Parliament and his practice of social choreography that he has developed at the Laboratory for Social Choreography at Duke University. He will be joined by Emily Raboteau from Social Practice CUNY and Cory Tamler, author of Permanent Parliament: Notes on Social Choreography (2022).


Michael Kliën is a choreographer and artist whose work has been situated worldwide. Kliën’s artistic practice encompasses interdisciplinary thinking, critical writing, curatorial projects, and, centrally, choreographic works equally at home in the Performing and Fine Arts. He has been commissioned by leading institutions such as Ballett Frankfurt, Martha Graham Dance Company, New Museum, PS122, Volksoper Wien, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Athens Festival, Hayward Gallery, and ZKM. As Artistic Director/CEO of Daghdha (2003—2011, Ireland), Kliën developed a distinct movement aesthetic in correspondence with influential concepts of politically engaged choreography, performance, and dance. He received a Ph.D. from the Edinburgh College of Art in 2009. After living and working in Greece, he was appointed professor at Duke University in 2017, inaugural director of the MFA in Dance: Embodied Interdisciplinary Praxis in 2018, and founding-director of the Laboratory for Social Choreography at the Kenan Institute of Ethics in 2020.

Emily Raboteau writes at the intersection of social and environmental justice, race, climate change, and parenthood. Her books include Searching for Zion (winner of an American Book Award) and Lessons for Survival, forthcoming in spring, 2024. A contributing editor at Orion Magazine and a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books, Raboteau’s essays have recently appeared and been anthologized in the New Yorker, the New York Times, New York Magazine, The Nation, Best American Science Writing, Best American Travel Writing, and elsewhere. Her distinctions include an inaugural Climate Narratives Prize from Arizona State University, the Deadline Club Award in Feature Reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists’ New York Chapter, and grants and fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Bronx Council on the Arts, and Yaddo. She’s a professor of creative writing in the English Department at the City College of New York, and lives in the Bronx.

Cory Tamler ( is the program coordinator for Social Practice CUNY and a Ph.D. Candidate in Theatre and Performance at The Graduate Center, where she is writing about co-authorship practices in contemporary performance. She is a former Fulbright scholar and in 2021-2022 was a visiting DAAD scholar at the Institute for Applied Theatre Studies at the University of Gießen. Cory also makes research-based performances with In Kinship (Wabanaki/Maine). Her first book, A Permanent Parliament: Notes on Social Choreography, was published in 2022. She is based in Berlin, Germany, where she is developing a trilogy of plays in collaboration with bodies of water and Alex Viteri Arturo. She tends a garden near the Helenesee.


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