Metropolis Residency - Choreographing the City

Metropolis Residencies 2019

International site-specific residency programme for performing arts in Copenhagen

Metropolis Residency is a unique international urban residency programme in Copenhagen aimed at performing artists with an interdisciplinary approach, researching, creating and producing in public space and the public realm.

In 2019, Metropolis organised three residencies of one month. Each residency had a specific focus and each residency was for five participants.

2-30 June 2019:
Narrating the City
How can we re-write and re-narrate the city and give place to other voices?

30 June -28 July 2019:
Sensing the City
Exploring and mapping the city with a sensuous approach.

11 August-8 Sept. 2019:
Choreographing the City
Moving in and with the city, relating the human body to the city’s flow and the choreography of the everyday.

See photos from 2019:

Metropolis is an international platform for urban creation with a clear focus on working in the existing urban environment. We have worked site-specifically since 1981 with more than 200 creations on 125 sites/situations. From street theatre over location-based performance, site-specific creations, community based work, urban interventions and immersive installations.

From 2007, Metropolis has presented artistic projects in public space during the summer, but built on a cyclic process of exploratory meetings, laboratories, site-specific residencies, collaborative productions and presentations.

Though our activities are rooted in the performing arts, we have developed strong links to the fields of architecture, urban design, visual arts, sound based artwork and digital media as art in the public realm has become more and more interdisciplinary in its exploration of the performative city. From being purely location-based, work is now strongly place-based and contextualised, i.e. linked to the human, the social, the symbolic, the historic, the cultural, the functional and the aesthetic.

Metropolis is about work which is public in many ways – researched, created and presented in the public domain. It is about engaging citizens in issues which are often at the core of civil society. And it is about using and developing new performative formats, aesthetics and languages to maintain a clear artistic voice in contemporary culture.

The artistic programme of Metropolis 2019 will run from May to September, and the residencies will be connected to this programme.

The first series of Metropolis Residencies was held in 2018 with the residencies Engaging the City, Walking the City and Balancing the City. To get an impression of the Metropolis Residencies from the 15 participants, please see documentation and interviews here.


Residency 1:
Narrating the City
How can we re-write and re-narrate the city and give place to other voices? 

How do we catch the fluid, hidden and unknown narratives of the city as the ultimate intercultural, intergenerational, intergender communality, and how can these be used to inspire, inform and confront ourselves in questions of (self)representation in our cities?

The residency is for writers, dramaturgs, performers, directors and documentarists interested in the development of other narratives and the sense of common narratives, whether these be from social groups, neighbourhoods, communities, cultural-/sexual minorities, or suppressed memories. In cities, where segregation is an increasingly threatening theme, the search for other voices to become part of the collective narrative is paramount.

Period: 2 – 30 June 2019
Invited artists: 
Francine Kliemann (BR/UK), Aleksandra Jakubczak (PL), Anna Anderegg (CH), Marieke Breyne (DK/BE), Salomé Mooij (NL)

See interviews with the five artists here about their research in Copenhagen.

Residency 2:
Sensing the City
Exploring and mapping the city with a sensuous approach.

Our relationship with places is highly complex, layered on the basis of memory, of personal experiences, of sensing and feeling, of impressions from media, of social/architectural typologies.

This residency will focus on how individuals can investigate, translate and relate the city as a porous, sensorial, layered and emotional phenomenon, where visual, audio, tactile aspects can be used to sense the city.

We are interested to invite artists who question how we map, deconstruct and reconstruct the city, with the personal experience at the core, and where the fictional and the functional/real overlap. How can systematic mappings, conceptual mappings, wanderings, conversations with local people, etc. be used to create “site based/connected” work?

Period: 30 June – 28 July 2019
Invited artists: 
Sarah Bostoen (BE), Anne Glassner (AT), Mette Sanggard Dideriksen (DK), Flóra Eszter Sarlós (HU), Caterina Moroni (IT), Jin Yeob Lee (KR)

See interviews with the six artists here about their research in Copenhagen.

Residency 3:
Choreographing the City
Moving in and with the city, relating the human body to the city’s flow and the choreography of the everyday.

Since Trisha Brown’s iconic series of dances on New York rooftops, choreographing (in) the city has been an ongoing theme in contemporary dance and movement / popular culture, linking street movement, everyday movement, choreographed work with the movements, rhythms and dynamics of the city itself which is in continuous flow. The residency is for choreographers, dancers and a broad spectre of movement practitioners within contemporary circus, parkour, etc., working on how the human body relates to the city and how this relationship can be challenged and re-choreographed.

Looking at movement in-of-with the city and relating to the choreography of the everyday on micro and macro scale as well as seeing opportunities to choreograph with the city, its architecture and its public spaces and also looking at the choreography of mobility and masse public movement, working with residents in participatory processes, etc.

Period: 11 August – 8 September 2019
Invited artists: 
Florent Golfier (FR/CZ), Luke Lentes (UK), Stella Mastorosteriou (GR), Bianca Hisse Silva (BR/NO)

See interviews with the four artists here about their research in Copenhagen.


While you will mainly be working in the city, your residency base will be on Refshaleøen, the former shipyard area, which is just 10 min. from the Copenhagen city centre on bike. You will all five live here, sharing a large flat/studio space.

Refshaleøen is now a vibrant place for creative companies, architects, artist workshops, climbing and skate facilities as well as craft workshops and boat repairs. An incredible post-industrial landscape with endless possibilities to work on location. The Metropolis office is the indoor base for all artists.

A typical month-long residency will have a basic structure with space for individual mentoring and reflection, dynamic group sessions as well as interaction with real situations and with local artists. We believe that interaction is key to working in the public space, although there is naturally time for reflection. Week 1 will be programmed with workshops and visits. Week 2 and 3 will primarily be for individual work. Week 4 will conclude the residency.

Artists will be encouraged to keep “diary” and to leave an artistic “trace” as a result of their residency. The precise format will be discussed in each group and will become part of a Metropolis archive of reflection.


  • Each residency will have 5 participants – 4 international and 1 Danish – but only one artist per company/project can participate.
  • All participants are expected to spend the entire month in Copenhagen with a full programme.
  • It is important that you can work independently, but that you are at the same time open to collaborate and share with the other participants.
  • The residency programme is mainly aimed at artists in the early phases of idea, concept and project development. A residency does not automatically lead to a presentation of a possible future creation in Metropolis. However, Metropolis will be introduced to your research and work.
  • The residencies are aimed both at artists already working in public space and at artists interested in exploring their practice in a site-specific context. Both emerging and experienced artists are welcome to apply. A genuine interest for site-specific creation is crucial.

Metropolis’ four-year residency programme for 2018-21 is supported by the Danish Arts Foundation