Theatre-Making explores modes of authorship in contemporary theatre seeking to transcend the heritage of binaries from the Twentieth century such as text-based vs. devised theatre, East vs. West, theatre vs. performance - with reference to genealogies though which these categories have been constructed in the English-speaking world.
Thinking Through Theatre and Performance presents a bold and innovative approach to the study of theatre and performance. Instead of topics, genres, histories or theories, the book starts with the questions that theatre and performance are uniquely capable of asking: How does theatre function as a place for seeing and hearing? How do not only bodies and voices but also objects and media perform? How do memories, emotions and ideas continue to do their work when the performance is over? And how can theatre and performance intervene in social, political and environmental structures and frameworks? Written by leading international scholars, each chapter of this volume is built around a key performance example, and detailed discussions introduce the methodologies and theories that help us understand how these performances are practices of enquiry into the world. Thinking through Theatre and Performance is essential for those involved in making, enjoying, critiquing and studying theatre, and will appeal to anyone who is interested in the questions that theatre and performance ask of themselves and of us.
In a context of financial crisis that has often produced a feeling of identity crisis for the individual, the theatre has provided a unifying forum, treating spectators as citizens. This book critically deals with representative plays and playwrights who have stood out in the UK and internationally in the post-recession era, delivering theatre that in the process of being truthful to the contemporary experience has also redefined theatrical form and content. Built around a series of case-studies of seminal contemporary plays exploring issues of social and political crisis, the volume is augmented by interviews with UK and international directors, artistic directors and the playwrights whose work is examined. As well as considering UK stage productions, Angelaki analyses European, North American and Australian productions, of post-2000 plays by writers including: Caryl Churchill, Mike Bartlett, Dennis Kelly, Simon Stephens, Martin Crimp, debbie tucker green, Duncan Macmillan, Nick Payne and Lucy Prebble. At the heart of the analysis and of the plays discussed is an appreciation of what interconnects artists and audiences, enabling the kind of mutual recognition that fosters the feeling of collectivity. As the book argues, this is the state whereby the theatre meets its social imperative by eradicating the distance between stage and spectator and creating a genuinely shared space of ideas and dialogue, taking on topics including the economy, materialism, debt culture, the environment, urban protest, social media and mental health. Social and Political Theatre in 21st-Century Britain demonstrates that such contemporary playwriting invests in and engenders moments of performative reciprocity and spirituality so as to present the audience with a cohesive collective experience.
This book offers a provocative and groundbreaking re-appraisal of the demands of acting ancient tragedy, informed by cutting-edge scholarship in the fields of actor training, theatre history, and classical reception. Its interdisciplinary reach means that it is uniquely positioned to identify, interrogate, and de-mystify the clichés which cluster around Greek tragedy, giving acting students, teachers, and theatre-makers the chance to access a vital range of current debates, and modelling ways in which an enhanced understanding of this material can serve as the stimulus for new experiments in the studio or rehearsal room. Two theoretical chapters contend that Aristotelian readings of tragedy, especially when combined with elements of Stanislavski’s (early) actor-training practice, can actually prevent actors from interacting productively with ancient plays and practices. The four chapters which follow (Acting Sound, Acting Myth, Acting Space, and Acting Chorus) examine specific challenges in detail, combining historical summaries with a survey of key modern practitioners, and a sequence of practical exercises.
The world of theatre criticism is rapidly changing in its form, function and modes of operation in the twenty-first century. The dominance of the internet has led to a growing trend of selfappointed theatre critics and bloggers who are changing the focus and purpose of the discussion around live performance. Even though the blogosphere has garnered suspicion and hostility from some mainstream newspaper critics, it has also provided significant intellectual and ideological challenges to the increasingly conservative profile of the professional critic. This book features 16 commissioned contributions from scholars, arts journalists and bloggers, as well as a small selection of innovative critical practice. Authors from Australia, Canada, Croatia, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Russia, the UK and the US share their perspectives on relevant historical, theoretical and political contexts influencing the development of the discipline, as well as specific aspects of the contemporary practices and genres of theatre criticism. The book features an introductory essay by its editor, Duška Radosavljevic.
Contemporary theatrical productions as diverse in form as experimental performance, new writing, West End drama, musicals and live art demonstrate a recurring fascination with adapting existing works by other artists, writers, filmmakers and stage practitioners. Featuring seventeen interviews with internationally-renowned theatre and performance artists, Theatre and Adaptation provides an exceptionally rich study of the variety of work developed in recent years. First-hand accounts illuminate a diverse range of approaches to stage adaptation, ranging from playwriting to directing, Javanese puppetry to British children's theatre, and feminist performance to Japanese Noh. The transition of an existing source to the stage is not a smooth one: this collection examines the practices and the complex set of negotiations each work of transition and appropriation involves. Including interviews with Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio, Handspring Puppet Company, Katie Mitchell, Rimini Protokoll, Elevator Repair Service, Simon Stephens, Ong Keng Sen and Toneelgroep Amsterdam, the volume reveals performance's enduring desire to return, rewrite and repeat.
‘Dr. Radosavljević has an excellent and extensive grasp of her subject, and deep understanding of not only the history of these groups, but how they function, and how each contributes to the field of ensemble theatre.’ – David Crespy, University of Missouri, USA Questions of ensemble – what it is, how it works – are both inherent to a variety of Western theatre traditions, and re-emerging and evolving in striking new ways in the twenty-first century. The Contemporary Ensemble draws together an unprecedented range of original interviews with world-renowned theatre-makers in order to directly address both the former and latter concerns. Reflecting on ‘the ensemble way of working’ within this major new resource are figures including: Michael Boyd, Hermann Wündrich, Yuri Butusov, Max Stafford-Clark, Elizabeth LeCompte, Lyn Gardner, Adriano Shaplin, Phelim McDermott; and Emma Rice; representing companies including: The RSC; The Berliner Ensemble; The Satirikon Theatre; Out of Joint; The Wooster Group; Kneehigh Theatre; Song of the Goat; The Riot Group; The Neo-Futurists; Shadow Casters; and Ontroerend Goed. All 22 interviews were conducted especially for the collection, and draw upon the author’s rich background working as scholar, educator and dramaturg with a variety of ensembles. The resulting compendium radically re-situates the ensemble in the context of globalisation, higher education and simplistic understandings of ‘text-based’ and ‘devised’ theatre practice, and traces a compelling new line through the contemporary theatre landscape.