Ursula Eagly: The Nature of Physical Reality

The Nature of Physical Reality is a solo performance for an audience of one. Created by Ursula Eagly with lighting by Madeline Best; sound by Kohji Setoh; and performances by Eagly, Best, Takemi Kitamura, and Maho Ogawa, this work elongates viewer attention and creates experiences of synesthesia. Shifts of energy, light, and sound bend visitor perception, like a gentle psychedelic, tracing the contours of viewers’ consciousness and making vivid their embodied subjectivity. This performance uses distance Reiki, a contact-free form of energy work that requires consent for participation.

View the Digital Program

Please make sure to review our COVID-19 safety policies here.


Ursula Eagly is a dance artist. Her works are characterized by a “rabbit-hole logic” (The New York Times), and her research considers the audience’s somatic experience and the potential of porosity. Ursula’s works have been commissioned throughout New York City and presented internationally. Her last premiere was a piece for psychosocial motor systems at Danspace Project, and her previous project, an iterative work performed in multiple mediums, is still available as a vinyl LP from The Chocolate Factory.

Kohji Setoh is a sound artist living in Kamakura, Japan. Kamakura is the center of Zen in Japan; the research base of D.T. Suzuki, who taught Zen to John Cage and others; and a city with close ties to artists involved with Fluxus, such as Yoko Ono. As a founding member of the Kamakura-based art collective ROOT CULTURE, Setoh has developed community-based artistic activities and collaborated with many international artists. He met Ursula Eagly through a project of Yoshiko Chuma’s in 2008 and has been collaborating with her ever since. He is an associate professor of music at Ferris University.

Madeline Best is a Lighting Designer, Performer, Mother and The Director of Operations at the Chocolate Factory Theater. Recent artists she has worked with include Heather Kravas, Ursula Eagly, Milka Djordjevich, Efrian Rozas, luciana achugar, Andrea Kleine, Anne-B Parson/Big Dance Theater, and more. Madeline grew up in Durham, North Carolina and currently lives in Long Island City, Queens.

Takemi Kitamura is a performing artist and energy healing practitioner. Takemi has been working as a performing artist with numerous choreographers and companies mainly in NY. Her performances credits include Blood Moon by Beth Morrison Projects, The Oldest Boy at Lincoln Center Theater, The Indian Queen directed by Peter Sellars, Demolishing Everything with Amazing Speed by Dan Hurling, Shank’s Mare by Tom Lee and Koryu Nishikawa V, SLEEP by Ripe Time, and Falling Out by Phantom Limbs Company. She is also a Reiki Teacher/Master and advance IET practitioner. Currently, she is studying with Robert Moss and certified as Level 1 Dream Teacher.

Maho Ogawa is a Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary movement artist who uses body, instructions, and computer software to discover how relationships and the environment affect individual bodies consciously and subconsciously. She has presented her works at multiple venues in her home country of Japan, Korea, and New York. Her recent research work is a movement catalog from her movement practices, Japanese movies, and habitual movements. https://minimum-movement-demo.web.app/movements


The Nature of Physical Reality is commissioned by the Abrons Arts Center. This work was researched through a residency with the International Interdisciplinary Artists Consortium. This project was supported, in part, by a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant.

Image courtesy of the artist