Journal of Embodied Research launch talks

These following talks were given on 8 February 2017 to launch the new Journal of Embodied Research. The transcript has been edited for clarity. To hear the audio recording, please visit the original post.

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Call for Proposals: Performance Research Journal – Special Issue ‘On Hybridity’

Call for Proposals
Vol. 25, No. 6 Performance Research Journal: ‘On Hybridity’ (September/October 2020)
Issue Editors: Frank Camilleri (University of Malta) and Maria Kapsali (University of Leeds)

Proposal Deadline: 8 November

This issue of Performance Research considers hybridity in relation to performance, in particular the making, reception and study of performance as practices that emerge from heterogeneous sources, as well as the performative operation of hybridity in historical, cultural and political contexts.

The term emerged from roots in agriculture and horticulture (for example, grafting) and is related to animal husbandry (cross-breeding) and to applications in metallurgy (alloys). It took on pseudo-scientific biological overtones when it overlapped with the history of imperialism and slavery, in the process generating a racialized discourse. In the second half of the twentieth century, hybridity became more broadly associated with questions of ‘subjectivity’ and ‘identity’, eventually leading to notions of ‘cultural hybridity’. Homi Bhabha’s reading of the term in the context of colonialism marks the interstitial and the liminal, for example in processes like those of mimicry, which reproduce the dominant culture in an ‘alien’ indigenous/colonized setting. Such perspectives resonate with others that emerge when two (or more) cultural worlds collide, including creolization in language, as well as Mikhail Bhaktin’s heteroglossia (the ‘hybrid utterance’) and the carnivalesque (satire/critique through imitation). In the twenty-first century, hybridity has taken a more pronounced tinge in light of technology, where to be human entails an ever-increasing reliance on and entanglement with non-human materiality. In addition to discourses about post-colonialism, multiculturalism, and identity, therefore, hybridity is now invoked in the contexts of globalization, technologization and the Anthropocene.

In discussions on contemporary performance, hybridity is often used loosely to capture the synthesis and co-mingling of different sources, practices and methodologies that
arguably underpin it. More specifically, the term has been employed in discussions of cultural and racial performance, as well as in relation to the emergence of new theatrical practices in colonial contexts. Responding to the complex connection between hybridity and performance, this special issue is grounded in the following points: 1) a reconsideration of the concept is timely; and 2) performance, in reflecting and influencing human activity and life, is strategically placed to conduct such a reappraisal specifically via its practices of preparation and presentation. Accordingly, this issue of Performance Research investigates the intersections between hybridity and performance as the coming together of performer and environment, materials and practitioners, performance and reception, event and analysis. Hybridity is, therefore, understood as at once a formative, trans-formative and per-formative encounter that shapes performance and culture on many levels:

• as pedagogical process
• as compositional and production strategy
• as ensemble and assembly (human and non-human)
• as inter- and intradisciplinary endeavour
• as a professional strategy
• as inter- and intracultural phenomenon.

Topics may include but are in no way limited to:
• issues and themes of hybridity in terms of technology, spaces/sites and fluid identities (for example, cyborgs, cultures, migrations) in performance
• the hybridization of physical and digital elements in performance (intermediality, multimedia, mixed media)
• intercultural/multicultural performance
• interdisciplinarity and intradisciplinarity in performance
• the multisource development and multichannel transmission of training exercises (including massive open online courses (MOOCs), mobile apps)
• compositional strategies like devising, choreography and ensemble work
• improvisation and relational performance processes
• applied performance as hybrid adaptive practice
• comedy, satire and the carnivalesque in performance
• issues related to genre, including performance art, ‘total theatre’, opera and other forms like music theatre, mime and dance that can be conceived in hybrid terms
• analysis of historical performances from the lens of hybridity
• practice as research case studies as hybrid methodologies and practices
• the post-human, the post-modern and the post-dramatic as hybrid paradigms
• conceptual frameworks related to hybridity that have a performative element (for example, grafting, fusion, merger, assemblage, otherness)
• historiography and ethnography as hybrid and evolving practices that involve diverse methodologies and technologies from various sources
• human and non-human relationalities and issues of agency in performance (objects, clothes, technology, design, architecture, plants, animals).

Schedule:
Proposals: 8 November 2019
First drafts: February 2020
Final drafts: May 2020
Publication: October 2020

Issue contacts:
All proposals, submissions and general enquiries should be sent direct to Performance Research at: info@performance-research.org

Issue-related enquiries should be directed to the issue editors:
Frank Camilleri: frank.camilleri@um.edu.mt
Maria Kapsali: M.Kapsali@leeds.ac.uk

General Guidelines for Submissions:
• Before submitting a proposal, we encourage you to visit our website (www.performance-research.org ) and familiarize yourself with the journal.
• Proposals will be accepted by email (Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format (RTF)). Proposals should not exceed one A4 side.
• Please include your surname in the file name of the document you send.
• Please include the issue title and issue number in the subject line of your email.
• Submission of images and other visual material is welcome provided that all attachments do not exceed 5 MB, and there is a maximum of five images.
• Submission of a proposal will be taken to imply that it presents original, unpublished work not under consideration for publication elsewhere.
• If your proposal is accepted, you will be invited to submit an article in first draft by the deadline indicated above. On the final acceptance of a completed article you will be asked to sign an author agreement in order for your work to be published in Performance Research.

Stanislavsky and The Media

The S Word and The Centre for Digital Storymaking, London South Bank University presents

The 2020 S Word symposium: Stanislavsky and The Media

@ London South Bank University, Thursday 23rd to Saturday 25th April 2020.

We aim to explore Stanislavsky’s relationship with and impact upon all aspects of the contemporary media – film, television, radio, electronic media, print and journalism, and via still and moving images, sound and music.

We now invite proposals for papers (20 minutes duration), practical workshops (40 minutes duration) and panel presentations (60 minutes duration with a minimum of three speakers). Please send a brief abstract (not more than 300 words) and a short biography to Professor Paul Fryer – (paul@paulfryer.me.uk), to arrive no later than Friday 29th November 2019.

Information on keynote and guest speakers, and details of booking arrangements will be published shortly.

Selected papers from this event will be published in the Spring 2021 edition of Stanislavski Studies (Taylor & Francis).

Please join us for our London 2020 event.

The S Word is an international research project that explores the relationship between Stanislavsky, his work and legacy, and all aspects of contemporary theatre and performance.

Call for Proposals: Actor Training, Teaching, and Specific Learning Differences/Disabilities

(Dr Petronilla Whitfield, Arts University Bournemouth UK)

Deadline for Proposals 15 December 2019

Call outline

This is a call for expressions of interest and proposals for chapter contributors in an edited book on actor training, voice, movement, education and learning differences /disabilities, neurodiversity. Following the recent publication of my book ‘Teaching Strategies for Neurodiversity and Dyslexia in Actor Training’ (Routledge 2019), I am now seeking ideas for potential chapters from teachers/ practitioners/authors regarding the development of their teaching in the support of Acting and Performance students/individuals with Specific Learning Differences/Disabilities. In particular, dissemination of practice is sought where the teaching directions are underpinned by research, theory, and scholarly investigation. It is important that Specific Learning Differences/Disabilities are not generalised, but detailed with specificity of their characteristics. Early researchers in this field are also invited to submit a proposal, as they are potentially important contributors to emerging pedagogical discussions and approaches.

Themes could include (but are not limited to):

• Descriptions of teaching interventions, rationale, process and outcomes, where teachers have recognised a problem or challenge and have carried out research, trials and transformation of their practice to support the neurodiverse, SpLD student’s/individual’s needs. (Descriptions of perceived failures are as valuable as successes).

• Critical analysis of pedagogy in actor training environments, historical and cultural contexts of actor training, and how Specific Learning Differences and neurodiversity is situated within that context

• An in-depth analysis of the arts-based discipline involved, and how the learning difference/style/disability can impact on embedded or adapted practice in that discipline

• The ethical and political concerns regarding the labelling of an individual with a SpLD, and how this might influence your practice/approach

• The foregrounding of the student voice and experience of those with SpLD, platforming student-led methods, autonomy, research and student- led teaching practices

• If you are a teacher with SpLD, (such as being dyslexic for example) , how that might inform/affect your teaching and your understanding for the individual student with learning challenges

• Development of inclusive assessment strategies, that do not unfairly disadvantage those with SpLD/neurodiversity and differing modes of learning

• The experience of Learning Support teachers/staff who have been involved in the teaching of acting performance students with SpLD and are researching and developing new practices in their field

• The experiences of coaches/teachers working with professional actors with SpLD and a dissemination of developing methods and reflection on endeavours to support those actors

Submitting a proposal

Preliminary conversations with potential contributors will help to develop the contents of the book, to submit to the publisher for review.

To signal your interest in making a contribution please contact Petronilla Whitfield for an initial exchange of ideas/thoughts, or email a proposal of 500- 1,000 words in length. Firm proposals must be received no later than the 15 December 2019 and sent, with a brief author biography, to the book’s editor, Dr Petronilla Whitfield (pwhitfield@aub.ac.uk)

Cumbria Youth Dance collaboration with TDPT

5 tips to make the most of a blog entry

Topos is a year-long artistic collaboration between Cumbria Youth Dance Company and Wired Aerial Theatre, to create a suite of new work – 1 dance film & 2 performance pieces – on the theme of mountains. Exploring the relationship between Labanotation (a way of recording dance movement) and topos (a similar notation method used by climbers to record their routes), dancers will work on the Cumbrian fells and in the studio to explore the transition between vertical & horizontal, producing 3 unique pieces of choreography for sharing at Kendal Mountain Festival, in the gardens at Brantwood, Coniston during John Ruskin’s bicentenary celebrations, and at Lakes Alive festival. The first performance has already been seen on stage at The Lowry as part of U. Dance NW 2019.

Photo: Henry Iddon

Part of the project will involve the young dancers creating blog posts describing their training and explaining how they are using the inspiration of their native Cumbrian fells to create contemporary dance.

So: to celebrate this project and to kickstart the TDPT collaboration here are 5 top tips for developing a good blog entry:

  1. Think carefully about how you combine your media. Do you have images and/or short video you can use to complement your ideas in writing?
  2.  Be simple and natural with your writing – blogs can be informal and are often all the more engaging when they are. 
  3. Think of your audience – who are you speaking to?  In this example – for TDPT – it is a mix of readers from all over the world, so don’t assume everything will be understood and explain local terms or jargon (briefly though!)
  4. Keep things short and sweet. Blogs are often read while people are doing other things – so keep the message simple.
  5. Above all – have a clear focus, so you know what you are trying to say. For this project it could be answering a simple question: How can mountains and nature inspire a training in dance? 

And remember – I’ll be around for the next few months as part of the project team to help and advise. So please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions.

Jonathan Pitches (j.pitches@leeds.ac.uk)

(TDPT co-editor and academic at Leeds University)