On the High Wire: Philippe Petit in Conversation with Paul Auster

The Center for Fiction

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Join us for a conversation between world-famous high wire artist Philippe Petit and acclaimed author Paul Auster, who wrote the introduction for Petit’s poetic handbook, On the High Wire. On the High Wire offers a window into the world of tightrope walking. Petit masterfully explains how preparation and self-control contributed to such feats as walking between the towers of Notre Dame and the World Trade Center. Addressing such topics as the rigging of the wire, the walker’s first steps, his salute and exercises, and the work of other renowned high-wire artists, Petit offers us a book about the ecstasy of conquering our fears and reaching for the stars. “After long hours of training, the moment comes when there are no more difficulties,” Petit writes. “Everything is possible, everything becomes easy. It is at this moment that many have perished. But that, no, that is not at all what I am afraid of.”