Call for Volunteers: Puppetry and Costume Workshops for the 2013 Beaux Arts Ball

PEN Parade of Illuminations

Ex Libris, a performance by Processional Arts Workshop in 2012

Update: Thanks to overwhelming interest, signups for all production workshops are now closed. The League is still seeking volunteers to help test the creations this Saturday, August 24th from 12:00pm-3:00pm and to utilize the pieces in a choreographed procession at the Beaux Arts Ball on September 28th. Those interested should contact Ian Veidenheimer at or 212.753,1722 x16.

The Architectural League’s Beaux Arts Ball is an annual benefit that brings together over a thousand people for an event that is both party and immersive experience. Each year, the Ball is held in a different architecturally significant location that is transformed by a team of architects and artists, for just one night, into a unique designed environment. Venues in recent years have included the Williamsburgh Savings Bank Tower, the Brooklyn Army Terminal, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the Old American Can Factory, just to name a few.

This year’s event will take place on September 28th, 2013 — save the date! — and details on the selected location will be announced soon. In the meantime, the League is seeking volunteers to participate in a series of workshops in mid-August at which costumes, puppetry, and other wearable materials will be produced for use in a procession specially choreographed for the 2013 Ball. The workshops are scheduled in three-hour chunks over nine days, from Saturday, August 17th through Sunday, August 25th. Volunteers receive discounts on tickets to the Ball, based on how many sessions they attend.

The call for volunteers is copied below. Click over to the Architectural League website for the latest updates and information.

Call for Volunteers
The Architectural League of New York requests volunteers to participate in costume, puppetry, and procession-making workshops run by Processional Arts Workshop (PAW). The material produced in the workshops will be used as performance pieces in a choreographed procession designed for The Architectural League’s 2013 Beaux Arts Ball, scheduled for September 28. Volunteers will fabricate, customize and, if desired, wear their pieces to the Beaux Arts Ball, and will receive discounted or free tickets in gratitude for their help (discount details outlined below). Volunteers may keep their personalized costumes, although the large puppets will remain in possession of The Architectural League.

The Workshops
The workshops will occur daily from Saturday, August 17 to Sunday, August 25 in The Architectural League’s office in SoHo: 594 Broadway, Suite 607. Each workshop is divided into two, three-hour-long sessions. Volunteers are encouraged to attend multiple sessions, although all degrees of participation are appreciated. Workshops are scheduled during the following dates and times:

Saturday, August 17 12-6 p.m.
Sunday, August 18 12-6 p.m.
Monday, August 19  4-10 p.m.
Tuesday, August 20 4-10 p.m.
Wednesday, August 21 4-10 p.m.
Thursday, August 22 4-10 p.m.
Friday, August 23 4-10 p.m.
Saturday, August 24 12-6 p.m.
Sunday, August 25 12-6 p.m.

CLICK HERE to fill out the volunteer availability form.

Each session begins with an orientation led by PAW. Please contact Ian Veidenheimer, the League’s Program Associate, at with any questions.

Ball Ticket Discounts
Workshop volunteers receive the following discounts on tickets to the Ball (non-discount tickets begin at $75 dollars):

    • One session of volunteer work = a $50 ticket
    • Two sessions = a $25 ticket
    • Three or more sessions = a free ticket

About the Beaux Arts Ball
Each year the Architectural League’s Beaux Arts Ball brings together over a thousand architects, designers, artists, and their friends for a night of drinks, dancing, food, and fun, all to benefit the programs of the League. The Ball is held in a different location each year and, since 2006, features a specially commissioned installation or environment by a team of architects, artists, and others.

About Processional Arts Workshop
Processional Arts Workshop (PAW) was formed to preserve, promote, and develop public processions and pageant puppetry as a distinct and vital art form. PAW creates original works for established public events and festivals such as community gatherings or “puppet raisings,” which enable volunteers to build, rehearse, and ultimately perform these works. PAW founders Sophia Michahelles and Alex Kahn will lead the workshops, which will produce not only giant puppets, but also elaborate masks and costumes, mobile architecture, and projections of light and shadow.

PEN Parade of Illuminations2011_Odysseus_at_Hell_Gate2011_i_of_the_Beholder2011_1_of_the_Beholder_2 headline 2002_Chessmen's Masquerade 1998_Metamorphosis

The views expressed here are those of the authors only and do not reflect the position of The Architectural League of New York.