Who Shall Watch The Watchers Themselves?

Quis poster designed by artist Johanna Mueller


Quis Custodiet is a multi-year community exploration of security by the dance company Bettmann Dances. Bettmann Dances is a program of the not-for-profit Day Eight.

Quis Custodiet explores how we – as individuals and communities – define and pursue security. Choreographer Robert Bettmann states, “Especially since 9/11, and the financial crisis, I have been grappling with issues of national and personal security, and I know I’m not alone. What can we do to be safe, as individuals and communities, and how does that impact security outside our communities?”

The title for the work is drawn from a phrase by the Greek philosopher Piccarus (6th century B.C.) – Quis Custodet Ipsus Custodiet, which means “who shall watch the watchers themselves?” In addition to exploring weighty issues of local and national security, Quis Custodiet is also a light-hearted exploration of the dancers relationship to the audience, and curation in the art world.

Over the coming months Mr. Bettmann and members of the company are available to bring the project to schools, community centers, and universities to share an empowering opportunity to express individual experience in motion.

The company was able to begin the Quis project through successful completion of Kickstarter project, but additional support through donations, sponsorships, and grants is necessary to bring the project to audiences throughout the mid-atlantic region.

To view the project Kickstarter site, click here.

to view the project website, click here.

Bettmann Dances first evening length performance – All Good Men – premiered in 2009 at the Capital Fringe Festival. A dance theater adaptation of a Dylan Thomas film-script, All Good Men was hailed in The Examiner as “an example of artistic craftsmanship.”

For Quis Custodiet, choreographer Bettmann is teaming with an accomplished group of collaborators. Renowned glass and video artist Tim Tate (founder of the Washington Glass School) is collaborating with the company to create the video/set design for the project. Artist Johanna Mueller created the original Quis image.