At HPI, student artists train, create, and perform.

Each day includes technique classes, improvisation and composition work, and time for rehearsal. All of this work is grounded in a study of the history of contemporary performance with frequent trips to see live work in and around Philadelphia including a full slate of programs in the Fringe Arts Festival in September.

We emphasize long lines of research organized around showings and low-key performances so that the work evolves and changes in a process of gaining deeper insight into the questions you explore. Each HPI class forms a tight-knit, cooperative community of inquiry and exploration in an intensive environment that includes six to nine hours a day of learning and creating together.

A typical HPI class include artists who:

  • come from performance backgrounds in dance and theater — some from liberal arts background and others from conservatory training
  • come from training in other disciplines too — like visual art, music, science, humanities, social research and activism.
  • are undergraduates and “post-bacs”—folks who are already in the world making and exploring. (Undergrads attend as part of a semester-away option receiving a full semester’s worth of credit through our partner institution Bryn Mawr College.) 
  • are “post-bacs”—folks who have graduated and/or are already in the world making and exploring. 
  • are between 20 and 30 years old but often include artists in their 30’s, 40’s and older.