Huggy Bears mentoring program

Our Huggy Bears program supports Vienna-based artists from various backgrounds who are just beginning to enter the field of performance art.

This program accompanies them over a period of approx. 7 months (March-October) until their first big premieres on one of Vienna’s established stages for performing arts. From research to rehearsal, from rehearsals to showings, and finally to the premieres, the different phases of creation are met with care, curiosity, and professional advice. Every year 3 to 6 projects (single artists or collectives) will be selected to join this journey.

The mentoring program contains:

·         Monthly group meetings with the staff of Bears in the Park and the other Huggy Bear participants.

.         Dramaturgy, coaching and production support anytime by Philippe Riera and Charlotte Bastam

·         Sharing/showing opportunities along the way such as „Handle with Care“ in collaboration with Brut Wien.

·         Facilitated and prioritized access to our studios over the whole 7 months (Our studio is accessible 24/7).

·         Getting in touch with a wider network of the performance art scene in Vienna and further.

·         Several exclusive workshops in the fields of production, outreach, sound, video, and light taking place in a fully equipped theater.

·         Administrative and financial support.

Our aims

We want to place the artists on the artistic map of Vienna and to support the first connection points with the audience and other professional players in town.

In these weird times of individualism, we believe that live art as a communal practice is relevant, vital, and more than ever necessary. So we aim to contribute to the enlargement of the Viennese performing art scene that is greatly diverse and growing.

Our network

Huggy Bears adds up to already existing residency programs provided by Viennese institutions and festivals. We could not proceed without the support and understanding of our partners as in  WUK performing arts, co-production house Brut Wien and Impulstanz Festival.

This initiative was conceived by Caro Madl and Philippe Riéra. They have been working in the performance field for over 30 years, and in the course of their practice experienced a great number of residency and support programs in Austria and abroad. Following a bottom-up strategy, they try to offer tailor-made working conditions for the benefit of the artists and the audience.

Caro Madl left Bears in the Park in February 2022 and now serves as an outside adviser. Since then Philippe has been supported by Charlotte Bastam.

How to apply

The next call will be published most likely in September/October 2023. The application procedure consists of two rounds. A selected group will be invited for an interview which will lead to the final selection of the Huggy Bears by the beginning of January 2024.

For the first round we kindly ask you to send in :

-a CV and an artist bio of every team member

- a short description of your project (1 A4 max.)

-relevant video links of your work

- a letter of motivation

As we hope to bring fresh wind to the scene we are open to transdisciplinary artists, scholars, and other creative minds dealing with time-based artforms.  You will find the link to the call here on our website, on our Social Media channels, and in our Autumn newsletter.