Rennie Harris Puremovement photo, Text: Toll the Bell, Gun Violence in Philadelphia

23/24 Season Artists-in-Residence:
Negro Ensemble Company & Rennie Harris Puremovement

In the 23/24 season, we continue our artist residencies with an urgent focus on gun violence. Philadelphia has experienced historic increases in gun-related crime, claiming an unprecedented number of lives and bringing immeasurable pain and trauma to our communities. This endemic issue affects us all, but disproportionally impacts urban neighborhoods and people of color.

With the Negro Ensemble Company and Rennie Harris Puremovement, we offer a range of programs that bring awareness to the issue of gun violence, while honoring the victims of this tragedy. This focus is timely, and these artists are addressing it head-on with their own interpretation, perspective and lived experience.

The project culminates with a major city-wide sound installation on June 7, National Gun Violence Awareness Day. A partnership with Penn’s Office of the Chaplain, Interfaith Philadelphia, Partners for Sacred Places and many churches, synagogues, mosques and other community partners, this event serves as a warning and a sonic device to disrupt the environment for Philadelphians, inviting them to stop and reflect on this tragic issue.

Toll the Bell is not a profile of tragedy, but rather a call to action – a literal ringing of the bell – to honor our fellow citizens who have lost their lives and raise awareness for those working to have a positive impact in our city.

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Toll the Bell Events

Negro Ensemble Company

Negro Ensemble Company
No Policy, No Justice
Oct 20-21

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Negro Ensemble Company

Negro Ensemble Company
Charles Fuller’s Zooman and the Sign
Feb 15-18

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Rennie Harris Puremovement

Rennie Harris Puremovement
Mar 22-23

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Orange map of Philadelphia; Text: Toll the Bell

Toll the Bell
Sound Installation
Jun 7


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Rennie Harris in Residence has been supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

The Negro Ensemble Company and Rennie Harris Puremovement performances are made possible in part with support provided by the Penn Live Arts Accelerator Program at the University of Pennsylvania.