Walking:Holding is a unique, experiential performance that invites audience members (one at a time) on a guided walk through the neighbourhood, where they encounter and hold hands with a series of people along the way. Rosana Cade’s project embraces social connections between strangers, illuminating how identity, intimacy, hypervisibility, and vulnerability intersect in public space.

In a large city like Toronto, it can be a struggle to meet new people or even strike up a conversation with your neighbour. As residents withdraw from their communities and isolation across the city rises, many people go days without human interaction.

Walking:Holding is a unique, experiential performance that invites individual audience members to participate in a guided walk through the Bentway neighbourhood, where they will encounter and hold hands with seven different people along the route. What transpires is a series of unscripted conversations, which open each person up to a new social connection.

With roots in queer activism, the performance invites you to experience your city from someone else’s perspective, illuminating the ways in which our identity can affect our experience of different spaces. It’s a gentle invitation between strangers, provoking the question: what happens when we open our hands to each other in public? In June 2024, a series of photographic portraits of the performers of Walking:Holding will be installed along The Bentway. Created as a collaboration between Glasgow-based Rosana Cade and local photographer Kirk Lisaj, these portraits seek to restage the performance for visitors to The Bentway, inviting further explorations of softness, visibility, and connection in public space.

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