Mammalian Diving Reflex

Mammalian Diving Reflex was founded in Toronto in 1993, and between 1993-2003 primarily produced the stage-based performances of Artistic Director, Darren O’Donnell. In 2003, the company began to diversify its approach and generate work in a multitude of forms, focusing on creating “social acupuncture”: playful, provocative, site and social-specific participatory performances with non-actors of all ages and demographics, designed to bring people together in new and unusual ways. In 2006, Darren published his book, Social Acupuncture, which established a theoretical foundation for this new direction and solidified it as the company’s primary creative methodology.

We have presented their work in 2014 (Haircuts by Children) and again with “EAT THE STREET” at our Live Art for Children Festival 2018:

A whimsical work of contemporary performance that yanks power and authority from the clutches of adults and places it in the deserving hands of children. Following a culinary session with a professional chef, grade six will make stops at several of the city’s most notable eateries in Odense. They will be feted and fed, charged with offering their brutally honest, uncensored opinions on the food, the service, the décor, the state of the washrooms and the charm of the dishwasher. For the mere cost of a meal, the public is invited to sit amongst the kids for a front-row view of the youthful connoisseurs in action. Check the list of restaurants and dates at

Then join the panel of pre-adolescent adjudicators for an uproarious awards ceremony where awards are bestowed for everything from “Most Delicious” and “Coolest Chef” to “Least Graffiti in the Washroom.”

Mammalian Diving Reflex: “Eat the Street” kredit Lisa Kannakko

Below: From Haircuts by Children in Copenhagen at out first Live Art for Børn festival in 2014:

Photo: Ellen Friis

Om liveart_dk blev grundlagt i 2004 for at udvikle miljøet for live art og performancekunst i Danmark igennem nytænkende koncepter og projekter. Siden 2004 har organiseret 10 store internationale festivals for børn og voksne, og over 40 andre events – Samtalekøkkener, bogudgivelser, video serier, symposier, residenser og mere indenfor kunst, kritik og dokumentation.