Mascher Space Cooperative is a home for new dance in Philadelphia. Artist imagined, artist founded, artist shared and run, Mascher is a nonprofit that provides affordable and versatile space. We are a community of support that cultivates deep problem solving and artistic inquiry in continuing our practices. Bound not by aesthetics, but a common commitment to working cooperatively and sharing tasks and resources, Mascher nurtures the development of all its members at various stages in their careers, lines of research, and explorations.
Mascher Space Cooperative was founded in 2005 by Rebecca Patek and Liza Clark. In December 2010, Mascher achieved 501(c)3 tax status as a non-profit organization. Since it's beginning, Mascher has been an artist-run organization that provides a home for independent dance artists and small companies to develop and perform their work, as well as teach classes and workshops.
In addition to offering affordable rehearsal space, Mascher has been the instigator and partner in a number of beneficial programs for the Philadelphia contemporary dance community: Fresh Juice's Artist in Residence performances, Get Free Fest, the HOT Series, IN FLUX Performance Series, Low Lives, FALLS BRIDGE: new movement, improvisation and performance festival, Philly Dance COSMOS Contemporary Dance Class Series, and CURRENT evenings of live art, among others. Mascher has partnered with many institutions over the years including the fidget space, Center for Performance Research in NYC, University of the Arts, and High Tide Gallery, among others. Since 2010, Mascher has been a proud grant recipient from the Philadelphia Cultural Fund, and has received additional support for programming initiatives from institutions such as Dance Advance, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Penn Treaty Special Services, and Pew Arts and Heritage.
In January 2011, Mascher created a Community Engagement program to explore and foster long-lasting and reciprocal relationships with the surrounding community by developing art-driven engagement and shared resource programs with organizations such as Moffett Elementary School and GALAEI (Gay and Lesbian AIDs Education Initiative). Mascher is proactive in the goals of racial equity and inclusion, as well as being conscientious neighbors. Mascher also provides continued professional development for its Artists in Residence and members of Philadelphia's dance community. Master classes and workshop intensives have been offered by artists such as Deborah Hay, Katsura Kan, Miguel Gutierrez, and Kira Kirsch.
After 14 years of being based in the Old Kensington neighborhood, Mascher Space relocated to 2519 Germantown Ave during December, 2019. In a need to adapt to the pandemic, Mascher entered into a partnership with Headlong Studios and Ninth Planet during the fall of 2020, and will be sharing space and resources at 1170 S Broad St in South Philadelphia.