This collection of essays explores the complex and ever-fluctuating relationaship between the mainstream and the marginal as it applies to the world of theatre.
This book was first published in 2010. Madison presents the neglected yet compelling and necessary story of local activists in South Saharan Africa who employ modes of performance as tactics of resistance and intervention in their day-to-day struggles for human rights. The dynamic relationship between performance and activism are illustrated in three case studies: Act One presents a battle between tradition and modernity as the bodies of African women are caught in the cross-fire. Act Two focuses on 'water democracy' as activists fight for safe, accessible public water as a human right. Act Three examines the efficacy of street performance and theatre for development in the oral histories of Ghanaian gender activists. Unique to this book is the continuing juxtaposition between the everyday performances of local activism and their staged enactments before theatre audiences in Ghana and the USA. Madison beautifully demonstrates how these disparate sites of performance cohere in the service of rights, justice, and activism.
The first volume to focus exclusively on lesbian performance work, Acts of Passion: Sexuality, Gender, and Performance draws on the experiences and expertise of a wide range of lesbian practitioners and theorists to explore the impact and influences of sexuality and gender on performance. It examines essays, dialogues, and performance texts from theater directors, performers, theorists, playwrights, and performance writers against social and cultural constructs and performance theories to produce a diverse and challenging portrait of lesbian live performance art. The book's penetrating scope covers drag queens, lesbian vampires, representations of lesbian sex, solo artists, the art of collaboration, lesbian aesthetics, and lesbian playwrights writing straight and illustrates why live performance is one of the most dynamic forums in which women can create, control, and produce their work without artistic constraint.Acts of Passion explodes binary definitions of gender and sexuality by destabilizing familiar notions of the 'real'and creating new production values and aesthetics in the process. The relationships between experience and expression, sexuality and cultural placing, context and artistic control, representation and self-representation become clearer as the book discusses:
- the manner in which women are represented as absent in the signifying system of patriarchal society
- how questions of purity, 'authenticity, 'and self-definition complicate the field of representation
- the power of lesbian dance performance to make the lesbian body culturally visible
- several 'new wave'performers--creating work, getting seen, showing flesh, doing politics, and making money
- the projections, preconceptions, expectations, and general baggage attached to the performing lesbian body
- what the term 'lesbian playwright'means within contemporary culture
- 'It's Queer Up North'--a British National Arts Organization
- the arguments for and against mainstreaming lesbian performanceAnyone interested in theater and performance, cultural studies, gender issues, and the politics of 'positive representation'--whether playwright, performer, director, writer, academic, student, or theatre goer--will find Acts of Passion a powerful step in wrenching the power of representation away from the dominant culture. Defiant, saucy, sexy, and smart, the contributors appropriate their own spaces, identities, crafts, and languages, both within this book and without.
Why are so many theatre productions adaptations of one kind or another? Why do contemporary practitioners turn so frequently to non-dramatic texts for inspiration? This study explores the fascination of novels, short stories, children's books and autobiographies for theatre makers and examines what 'becomes' of literary texts when these are filtered into contemporary practice that includes physical theatre, multimedia performance, puppetry, immersive and site-specific performance and live art.
In Adaptation in Contemporary Theatre, Frances Babbage offers a series of fresh critical perspectives on the theory of adaptation in theatre-making, focusing on meditations of prose literature within contemporary performance. Individual chapters explore the significance and impact of books as physical objects within productions; the relationship between the dramatic adaptation and literary edition; storytelling on the page and in performance; literary space and theatrical space; and prose fiction reframed as 'found text' in contemporary theatre and live art. Case studies are drawn from internationally acclaimed companies including Complicite, Elevator Repair Service, Kneehigh, Forced Entertainment, Gob Squad, Teatro Kismet and Stan's Cafe.
Adaptation in Contemporary Theatre is a compelling and provocative resource for anyone interested in the potential and the challenges of using prose literature as material for new theatrical performance.
Why are so many theatre productions adaptations of one kind of another? Why do contemporary practitioners turn so frequently to non-dramatic texts for inspiration? This study explores the fascination of novels, short stories, children's books and autobiographies for theatre makers and examines what 'becomes' of such texts when these are filtered into contemporary practice that includes physical theatre, multimedia performance, puppetry, immersive and site-specific performance, and live art.
Through its prologue and substantial first chapter, Adaptation in Contemporary Theatre sets out a series of fresh critical perspectives on the theory of adaptation in theatre-making. Subsequent chapters are devoted to the various literary sources for adaptation, with each chapter examining the characteristic features, restrictions and potency presented by the source material, before tracing the ways that they are played out in recent performance projects.
Each chapter in this important critical reader tackles the theory and practice of modern performance work, and enables students and teachers to see what is at stake in analysing dance, drama, music and videos using contemporary critical theories. Including Elizabeth Wright on psychoanalysis, Baz Kershaw on the politics of performance, Jatinder Verma on multiculturalism, E. Ann Kaplan on MTV and video, Lizabeth Goodman on feminism and AIDS, Stephen Connor on postmodernism and many others.
What is the relationship between past and present in performance, given that the performing body is tangibly present in the here and now? What is the relationship between performance and authenticity? Between live, apparently 'confessional' performance and supposedly 'reality' television? Autobiography in Performance will provide a broad overview of the key concepts pertaining to 'autobiography' in the field of performance. Heddon's engaging style seamlessly blends the theoretical and the personal, raising and pursuing provactive questions around issues of 'truth', 'identity', personal history and political agency, confession, voyeurism and ethics. The book provides case studies of key international practitioners, including Tim Miller, Lisa Kron, Bobby Baker and Curious.
A practical guide to training as an actor, helping you get the most out of drama school - and survive in the world beyond.Are you thinking of applying to drama school?
Do you have a place already and want to get the most out of your training?
Are you seeking to make the best possible start in the world beyond drama school? Becoming an Actor takes you, step by step, technique by technique, through everything you can expect to encounter at drama school, and in your first year as a professional actor. Stuffed with exercises and full of practical advice, it is the ideal handbook to accompany your training. Thomasina Unsworth teaches at Rose Bruford College, one of the UK's leading drama schools. Here she shows what acting classes at an accredited drama school are actually like, and offers guidance and support through what is a critical time in any actor's career. With many different exercises to help actors explore the techniques they need to master, Becoming an Actor is also an invaluable resource for those teaching acting, and for those seeking to refresh their training.
Based on the words and experiences of the people involved, this book tells the story of the community arts movement in the UK, and, through a series of essays, assesses its influence on present day participatory arts practices. Part I offers the first comprehensive account of the movement, its history, rationale and modes of working in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales; Part II brings the work up to the present, through a scholarly assessment of its influence on contemporary practice that considers the role of technologies and networks, training, funding, commissioning and curating socially engaged art today.
The community arts movement was a well-known but little understood and largely undocumented creative revolution that began as part of the counter-cultural scene in the late 1960s. A wide range of art forms were developed, including large processions with floats and giant puppets, shadow puppet shows, murals and public art, events on adventure playgrounds and play schemes, outdoor events and fireshows. By the middle of the 1980s community arts had changed and diversified to the point where its fragmentation meant that it could no longer be seen as a coherent movement. Interviews with the early pioneers provide a unique insight into the arts practices of the time.
Culture, Democracy and the Right to Make Art is not simply a history because the legacy and influence of the community arts movement can be seen in a huge range of diverse locations today. Anyone who has ever encountered a community festival or educational project in a gallery or museum or visited a local arts centre could be said to be part of the on-going story of the community arts.