Mission & History
As catalyst for creativity, it is the mission of the Performance Garage to create an environment that nurtures dance artists and facilitates the building of a broader audience for dance in Philadelphia.
It is the vision of the Performance Garage to be a nationally-recognized dance organization, creating a sustainable home for artistic excellence and providing diverse programming for Philadelphia audiences.
In executing its mission and in pursuit of its vision, the Performance Garage believes that:
dance artists require access to affordable and professional spaces;
dance artists need additional support and resources to create work;
dance artists deserve an affirming, inclusive, and nurturing space to explore their practices;
dance audiences should have access to dance performances and dance programs throughout the year; and
the dance community will be strengthened through a robust and well-funded home for dance in Philadelphia.
Founded in 2000 by Jeanne Ruddy and Victor Keen, the Performance Garage is a 501 (c)(3) organization located in the Spring Garden area of Philadelphia. The Performance Garage is housed in a historic 19th century building that was originally a horse stable later converted into an auto repair garage. In 2002 the historic faceade was renovated, and the space was transformed into a versatile dance studio and theater with accompanying offices.
For twelve years the Performance Garage served as a home for Jeanne Ruddy Dance, a non-profit modern dance company under the artistic leadership of former Martha Graham Company Principal Dancer Jeanne Ruddy. The final season for Jeanne Ruddy Dance was held in 2012, launching a Legacy Plan to preserve the company’s repertory and shifting focus to the Performance Garage. For more information about the former Jeanne Ruddy Dance, visit ruddydance.org.
The Performance Garage continues to serve Philadelphia’s performing arts communities through its rental and outreach programs, acting as a catalyst for creativity.
© Bob Emmott