Living Altar, 2019/20

Paris, NYC, Cairo, Istanbul, Dubai

Living Altar is a project of Kaimera Productions, which I'm the Co-Artistic Director of. For detailed information about the project, please visit the Kaimera's website.


Living Altar is a multi-disciplinary performative celebration of the lives of individuals killed in conflict, whether military or civilian, and regardless of origin, gender, religion, status, or profession. Through a series of successive 30-minute performance pieces called "living altars", casualties are given a name, a face, a story, and equal value. Living Altars will be based on information gathered through surveys completed by those close to the deceased. Living Altar asks the difficult question: what is a life worth?

In its final form, Living Altar is a duration piece, performed around the clock without a set end date by dozens of artists from various disciplines, in a space that is visible and easily accessible to passersby, such as a storefront. Live performances will occur during the day, while at night, they will be played back in video projection form, for night owls to witness. The audience is invited to come and go as they please, and stay to attend as many of the "living altars" as they choose to. Down the line, the project will take place simultaneously in various cities, enabling us to play back, at night, segments that are happening live in other time zones.

Living Altar engages experts from a wide range of fields such as: psychologists, sociologists, conflict zone and development practitioners, journalists, military historians, and philosophers. Unique to this project is the real testimony and interviews from family members and loved ones.


Living Altar is partially developed through LPAC's Lab Space Grant Program and has received support from TCG. Simón Hanukai is a participant in the Global Connections–ON the ROAD program, funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and administered by Theatre Communications Group, the national organization for the professional not-for-profit American theatre. The project is also being developed in consultation with Theatre Without Borders.

Please contact me if you are interested in learning more about the piece
or have ideas for potential partners..