Issue 30

Tue, 1 Apr 1997

CFP Performance Paradigm 15, Performing Southern Feminisms

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Mon, 4 Feb 2019
Co-editors: Caroline Wake (University of New South Wales) and Emma Willis (University of Auckland), and section editors (TBC)

From Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at the United Nations to comedian Hannah Gadsby on Netflix—the women of Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia have rarely been more visible on the international stage. Like their sisters around the world, the women of the Asia-Pacific raised their hands and voices in 2017 to say #metoo. However, regional differences mean that the movement has unfolded differently here. In Australia, strict defamation laws have stymied the naming of perpetrators and instead facilitated the effective “weaponisation” of the #metoo movement (Maley 2018). In China, women were using the hashtags #??? (#IAmAlso) and #MeToo??? (#MeTooInChina) until the tags were banned, at which pointed they switched to the user-generated nickname for the movement, ??, which translates as “rice bunny” but is pronounced as “mi tu” (Zeng 2018). [I apologise that the eurocentric operating system won't import Chinese characters - Prez] In other instances, the movement served to reanimate previous efforts, for example the Australia Council of the Arts’ report Women in Theatre (Lally and Miller 2012) and in the Republic of Korea, Seo Ji-hyun’s complaint against her senior colleague in 2010 (Haynes and Chen 2018). Now, twelve years after Tarana Burke first tweeted #metoo, and one year after it went viral, women are also asking themselves—what next?

The aim of this issue of Performance Paradigm—an open-access, peer-reviewed journal now in its 15th year—is twofold. Firstly, to document and analyse the theatre, performance, dance and live art being made by and with cis- and trans-women across the Asia-Pacific. Secondly, and more ambitiously, to develop a theory and vocabulary of “Southern feminisms” for theatre and performance studies. In their recent issue on “Feminisms Now,” Sarah Gorman, Geraldine Harris and Jen Harvie remark on “the inadequacy of the term ‘feminist’ for non-white artists and scholars” (2018, 280). This “inadequacy” has particular regional resonances. For example, on the experiences of Pacific women, artists Lana Lopesi and Louisa Afoa write that, “The liberal feminist idea of a universal women’s experience can be unrelatable for women from cultures who have been victim to colonisation” (2015). Similarly, in her analysis of Hot Brown Honey, Sarah French draws on the work of Aileen Moreton-Robinson, a Goenpul woman of the Quandamooka nation, to argue that “Australian feminism has consistently excluded Indigenous women and … there are necessarily limitations to Indigenous women’s involvement with white feminists” (Moreton-Robinson 2000, cited by French 2018, 322).

These remarks reiterate the argument Celia Roberts and Raewyn Connell make in the introduction to their special issue on “Southern Feminism” (2016). Drawing on Beninese philosopher Paulin Hountondji (1997), they point out that: “Theory is normally produced in the metropole and exported to the periphery, while the periphery normally produces data and exports this raw material to the metropole. All academic disciplines show these patterns; viewed as a whole, feminist, women’s and gender studies are no exception” (Roberts and Connell 2016, 135–36). Neither are theatre and performance studies, both historically dominated by North American and European scholars. Rather than solely seeking to add some Asia-Pacific data to feminist theatre and performance studies, this issue sets out to develop a theory. It asks: what might Southern feminist performance—and performance theory—look like if we were start with our own “peripheral” selves?

We therefore invite contributions that problematise, extend and challenge what Southern feminism means in a wide variety of performance contexts including theatre, dance, performance and live art, ritual, activism, burlesque and voguing. Here we are thinking of everything from Arden’s diplomacy and Gadsby’s comedy to anything in between. We are interested in ensembles, solo artists, choreographers, company leaders, and community workers. Moreover, we invite appraisals of both feminist-identified performances and works that may not identify as “feminist” but that engage with the relationship between gender and power by way of their own cultural and aesthetic frameworks. While we do not wish to “colonise” artists who do not identify as feminist by naming them so, we do wish to broaden the parameters of the discussion in order to enrich the critical discourse. 

Topics may include but are not limited to:
  • Pacific feminisms, mana wahine
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander feminisms, Indigenous/indigenous feminisms
  • Feminism, allyship, and “decolonising solidarity” (Land 2015)
  • Queer, trans and non-binary feminisms
  • Cultural paradigms that provide their own matrices for articulating the relationship between gender, power and cultural expression in performance
  • Feminism and religious identities
  • Feminism, migration and performance
  • Feminist epistemologies and dramaturgies
  • Feminist performance on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and beyond
  • Pink/pynk aesthetics
  • Intergenerational feminist performance
  • Ecofeminism and performance
  • Xenofeminism and performance
  • Postfeminism
  • Issues of industry, participation and representation

Please send proposals of approximately 300 words to Caroline Wake ( and Emma Willis ( by Monday 18 February 2019. Full articles will be due on 31 May 2019 for publication in December 2019.

Works Cited

French, Sarah. 2018. “‘Talkin’ Up to the White Woman’: Intersections of Race and Gender in Hot Brown Honey.” Contemporary Theatre Review 28 (3): 320–331.

Gorman, Sarah, Geraldine Harris and Jen Harvie. 2018. “Introduction: Feminisms Now.”
Contemporary Theatre Review 28 (3): 278–284.

Hountondji, Paulin J. 1997. “Introduction: Recentring Africa.” In Endogenous Knowledge: Research Trails, edited by Paulin J. Hountondji, 1–39. Dakar: CODESRIA.

Land, Clare. 2015. Decolonizing Solidarity: Dilemmas and Directions for Supporters of Indigenous Struggles. London: Zed Books.

Lopesi, Lana, and Louisa Afoa. 2015. “Body Language.” The Occassional Journal 2015 (“Love Feminisms”).

Moreton-Robinson, Aileen. 2000. Talkin’ Up to the White Woman: Aboriginal Women and Feminism. St Lucia: University of Queensland Press.

Roberts, Celia, and Raewyn Connell. 2016. “Feminist theory and the global South.” Feminist Theory 17(2): 135–140.


CFP: WHY DEVISE? [working title]

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Mon, 13 Nov 2017

Volume editors Heather Fitzsimmons-Frey & James McKinnon

Devised theatre, performance creation, collective creation, performer-created theatre – by these or many other names, “devising” is increasingly visible in the global theatre industry, and as such it invites attention in post-secondary theatre studies and training contexts. How and why is devising embraced (or not) in advanced training centres, universities, and colleges? What are the perceived risks and rewards? While there are many collections suggesting techniques for devising, or analysing devised practices and projects (Barton 2008; Bicat and Baldwin 2002; Milling and Heddon 2005; Oddey 1994), this collection seeks contributions examining devising and performance creation in the contexts of post-secondary teaching, training, and research. Editors Heather Fitzsimmons Frey and James McKinnon are looking for essays investigating the purposes, practices, and outcomes of devised theatre projects in institutions of higher learning and/or advanced training.

This book is geared toward practitioners, students, scholars, and anyone with a stake in the issue of what post-secondary drama, theatre, and performance programs do—and for whom. We invite practice-based approaches reflecting current research, and/or case studies focusing on how devising aligns with or challenges the traditional disciplinary boundaries, praxes, and policies. Acknowledging that our curricula and practices vary enormously worldwide, we seek contributions representing a range of perspectives (including students, alumni, industry professionals, scholars, scholar-artists, and others) on “devising” in a variety of post-secondary educational contexts, including (but not limited to): liberal arts, drama in education, applied theatre, and conservatory training programs. Essays might explore any of the following areas:
  • Pedagogy: What do we learn from devising? How does this learning prepare students for life after study, either in or out of the professional theatre contexts? How are outcomes (for both faculty and students) defined and evaluated?  How does devising align with—or how can it be aligned with—evidence-based theories of teaching and learning? What special risks or rewards does it offer? What assumptions about student learning and devised projects do educators need to reconsider?
  • Inquiry: How does devising present or catalyze unique opportunities for participants to practice and/or participate in inquiry, investigation, and dissemination, or interdisciplinary scholarship?
  • Diversity: How do devising projects address local contexts, cultural difference, language, previous theatrical skill training and performance traditions? How, for example do potential identity markers like racial constructs, gender, sexuality, ability and disability, age, religious affiliation, or language knowledge influence planning, process, and reception of the projects?
  • Tradition, lineage, and methodology: Through what channels do knowledge and techne of devising and performance creation—including well-known systems such as the RSVP Cycles—flow between training institutions and practitioners?
  • Devising and Campus Theatre Production: How do theatre and performance training programs position student-devised new work in their public performance mandates? When (and why) is this work featured, or marginalized?
  • Devising’s mantras and myths: What clichés, truisms, and assumptions need to be carefully examined and re-evaluated when placed in post-secondary/tertiary training and education contexts?
  • Disciplinary division: Embracing devising implies moving away from traditional models of drama studies and theatre production; how do practitioners, students, scholars, and programs perceive and address this implication?
  • Industry and stakeholders: How does training in performance-making and devising align with our perceptions of what the theatre industry needs, and what graduates need to succeed in it? Contributors may also want consider professional contexts like drama therapy, drama educator, community facilitator, cultural venue animator, etc.
Submission guidelines:
  • Email a 300-500 word abstract to both editors: James McKinnon ( and Heather Fitzsimmons Frey (
  • Please include a 150 word bio and/or 2 page CV highlighting your creative & scholarly contributions.
  • Final length of accepted essays will be 4000-6000 words
  • Illustrations welcome, 300dpi
  • Queries welcome!

The deadline for proposals is 15 January 2018

CFP: Performance Paradigm 16: Performance and Radical Kindness

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Thu, 19 Mar 2020
Edited by Emma Willis (University of Auckland) and Alys Longley (University of Auckland)

Kindness as a radical act is not just ‘being nice’ to one another; it is the core of articulating, recognising, and valuing the complexity and beauty of the human condition, and putting this into practice in order to dismantle harmful systems of oppression and subjugation. Radical kindness is the creation of space for vulnerability. (Burton and Turbine 2019)

In an era where political and civil discourses are marred by populist politics of division and exclusion, kindness may seem to be in short supply. When it does appear, it is perceived as soft, uncritical and feminized. Alternatively, it is critiqued as inherently biased and/or dependent on differences in subject position and power (Clegg and Rowland 2020). Yet kindness has its champions. In performance, the fields of applied theatre as well as socially engaged and relationally oriented modes of performance often express an ethos of kindness through their aim towards, justice, social coherence, and transformation. In the scholarly and popular psychology, researchers have heralded the benefit of kindness to personal happiness and wellbeing. At a political level, current New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has attracted global attention for her politics and practices of kindness. However, ‘Kindness in the contemporary moment continues to be an under-researched emotion even in the midst of a surge of work in emotion and affect theory’ (Magnet at al 2014). This issue of Performance Paradigm ( seeks to respond to this gap in the literature, focusing on performance-based instantiations of kindness, and performance-led analyses of political and civil discourses that extend our understanding of its radical potential. Through discussion of a broad range of performance examples, we are seeking to redefine the performative potential of kindness, reinvesting it with the political power needed to counter prevailing political dispositions.

In considering the relationship between performance and kindness, we encourage a broad range of approaches. Kindness may be framed as a politically aspirational ethic that underlies or motivates performance – Petra Kuppers’ and Neil Marcus’s practice of ‘Helping Dances,’ for example, of which Kuppers writes: ‘All of us acknowledge living inter dependent lives, intersected and enabled by many, carried on the backs of infrastructural laborers of all kinds and touched by the kindnesses of strangers’ (Kuppers 2014). Kindness may also constitute an act of political and aesthetic refusal. Reflecting on a series of feminist performance works in Australia, Jana Perkovic remarks that the artists ‘found their strength not in attacking the enemy, but in standing their own ground. They were friendly works, non-combative – but through them, the artists claimed the right to exist for a universe full of dress-ups, kindness, self-reflection, freedom, and femininity’ (2014). Writing of Back to Back Theatre’s work, Super Discount, Helena Grehan and Peter Eckersall remark that ‘The juxtaposition between dark and light, vulnerability and superpower, and acting and performance remind us that it is not the epic encounter that is of significance. Instead, as the artifice of acting is banished from this work, we are left with moments of human kindness and a series of questions about where we go from here’ (2013).

Kindness may also feature as a subject of thematic consideration. Lydia Adetunji’s 2019 play Calculating Kindness, for example, explores the life of George Price, best known for formulating an equation explaining altruism. Kindness may also inform the creative process. Sandra Reeve, for example, writes of what she calls ‘regenerative choreography’ which incorporates ‘loving kindness’ into its methodology (2018, 78). Performance strategies discussed may involve creating enabling disruptions or, as anthropologists Alison Phipps and Lesley Saunders describe, ‘poetry for the sake of gentling the space where violence is writ large and ugly’ (2009). Finally, a performance-based analysis might be applied to the discourse of kindness in political rhetoric. For example, in the same way that Denise Varney applies a performance studies framework to scrutinise the ‘affective power of misogyny’ (2017) in attacks on Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, such an approach might be used to assess the rhetoric of kindness in the discourse of leaders such as Ardern.

Through considering performances that variously enact, contemplate or promote kindness, we invite authors to challenge some of the prevailing beliefs and assumptions about what constitutes kindness. We therefore invite authors to consider not only performances that enhance our understanding of both the radical potential of kindness but also those that draw attention to its misuses.

Topics may include but are not limited to:
  • What is the role of kindness in creative pedagogies and creative practices? What is the relationship between discipline, disciplinarity and kindness in classrooms and rehearsal rooms?
  • How might the poetics of kindness inflect creative research methodologies, such as studio practices of performance writing?
  • How is kindness both performed and understood differently in distinct cultural contexts? How do these culturally specific articulations of kindness expand our understanding of kindness as praxis?
  • How does kindness figure in performances concerned with the politics of race and gender?
  • How, as Burton and Turbine explain, do various social and political biases undermine the legitimacy afforded to kindness? How has kindness, as they suggest, been ‘weaponized,’ and how can performance effectively challenge such bias?
  • How might performance-based analysis be applied to the discourse of kindness in political rhetoric?
  • How might kindness be applied beyond the human? For example, how might the radical potential of kindness be conceived of in relation to ecological crisis?
  • How do performances of kindness emphasize notions of interdependence and reciprocity?
  • How might kindness be conceived of as radical action? In what sense might it, as Magnet et al. write, function in performance as a ‘technology of social transformation’ and a ‘microtechnique for both resisting and shaping power relations’ (2014)?
  • How might kindness be framed as a principle for convening community in both performance contexts and civil society, building what Hall and Smith call networks of ‘flexible resilience’ (2015)?
  • How might we critique the capture by capital markets of kindness as an affective currency? What does this ‘mainstreaming’ of kindness tell us about its instrumentality?

Please send proposals of approximately 300 words to Dr Emma Willis ( and Dr Alys Longley ( by 8 May 2020. Full articles will be due on 1 November 2020 for publication in Performance Paradigm, July 2021.

Please feel free to contact the issue editors with any questions. For more information about them, see here:
  • Dr Emma Willis, Senior Lecturer in Drama:
  • Dr Alys Longley, Associate Professor in Dance:

Works Cited

Burton, Sarah and Vikki Turbine (2019) “‘We’re Not Asking for the Moon on a Stick’: Kindness and Generosity in the Academy.” Discoversociety July 03,
Clegg, Sue and Stephen Rowland (2010) “Kindness in pedagogical practice and academic life”, British Journal of Sociology of Education, 31:6, 719-735.
Grehan, Helena and Peter Eckersall (2013) “Review: Super Discount by Back to Back Theatre”, The Theatre Times, 20 November,
Habibis, Daphne, Nicholas Hookway and Anthea Vreugdenhil (2016) “Kindness in Australia: An Empirical Critique of Moral Decline Sociology.” The British Journal of Sociology, 67(3), 395-413.
Hall, Tom and Robin James Smith (2015) “Care and Repair and the Politics of Urban Kindness.” Sociology 49(1) 3–18.
Hazou, Rand (2018) “Performing Manaaki and New Zealand Refugee Theatre.” Research in Drama Education: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance, 23(2), 228-241.
Kuppers, Petra (2014) “Crip Time.” Tikkun, 29 (4), 29-30.
Magnet, Shoshana, Corinne Lysandra Mason and Kathryn Trevenen (2014) “Feminism, Pedagogy, and the Politics of Kindness.” Feminist Teacher 25 (4), 1-22.
Perkovic, Jana (2014) “Performance: Dying on stage: Feminism 4.0.” The Lifted Brow, 23, 34.
Phipps, Alison and Lesley Saunders (2009) “The Sound of Violets: the Ethnographic Potency of Poetry?” Ethnography and Education 4 (3), 357-387.
Reeve, Sandra (2018) “On the Way to Regenerative Choreography.” Choreographic Practices 9 (1), 75-80.
Shklar, Judith N. (1989) “The Liberalism of Fear.” Pp. 21–37 in Liberalism and the Moral Life, edited by Nancy L. Rosenblum. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Varney, Denise (2017) “‘Not Now, Not Ever’: Julia Gillard and the Performative Power of Affect” in E. Diamond et al. (eds.), Performance, Feminism and Affect in Neoliberal Times, Palgrave Macmillan, 25-38.


CFP: Popular Entertainment Studies Volume 8, no.2 (September 2017)

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, 4 Apr 2017
Expressions of interest are invited from scholars and scholar/practitioners for the next issues of the international, peer-reviewed e-journal. We would like to encourage all those interested in the history and practices of popular entertainments to submit a proposal for inclusion in our next two issues. The interests of the journal are diverse and wide-ranging and have included such areas as popular entertainments in the context of a mediatised culture, street performances, music theatre, vaudeville, minstrelsy, professional wrestling and circus performers.

The journal has now been operating for eight years and its contents are indexed and abstracted by the Thomson-Reuters organisation for inclusion in its Arts and Humanities Citation Index and Current Contents/Arts and Humanities. The journal is an open access one and can be viewed for further information at:
Expressions of interest should be forwarded as soon as possible to the General Editor, Victor Emeljanow at or the Associate Editor, Gillian Arrighi at  The deadline for final paper submissions is July 7 2017 for the September 2017 issue, January 12 2018 for the March 2018 issue.

CFP: Popular Entertainment Studies Volume 8, no.2 (September 2017)

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, 4 Apr 2017
Expressions of interest are invited from scholars and scholar/practitioners for the next issues of the international, peer-reviewed e-journal. We would like to encourage all those interested in the history and practices of popular entertainments to submit a proposal for inclusion in our next two issues. The interests of the journal are diverse and wide-ranging and have included such areas as popular entertainments in the context of a mediatised culture, street performances, music theatre, vaudeville, minstrelsy, professional wrestling and circus performers.

The journal has now been operating for eight years and its contents are indexed and abstracted by the Thomson-Reuters organisation for inclusion in its Arts and Humanities Citation Index and Current Contents/Arts and Humanities. The journal is an open access one and can be viewed for further information at:
Expressions of interest should be forwarded as soon as possible to the General Editor, Victor Emeljanow at or the Associate Editor, Gillian Arrighi at  The deadline for final paper submissions is July 7 2017 for the September 2017 issue, January 12 2018 for the March 2018 issue.

Call for Proposals – Brill’s book series on Australian Playwrights and Australian Drama, Theatre and Performance

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Rea Dennis
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, 13 Jul 2021
Jonathan Bollen is inviting proposals for Brill’s book series on Australian Playwrights and Australian Drama, Theatre and Performance. 
The series aims to publish scholarship on Australian drama, theatre and performance, both authored books and edited anthologies, including:
  • critical studies of a particular playwright, director or company and their plays, productions and/or performances; 
  • thematic studies exploring the work of a group of Australian playwrights, theatre companies and/or performance makers; and 
  • scholarly books investigating a period, topic or approach in Australian drama, theatre or performance. 
Contact Jonathan Bollen,, if you have a proposal in mind. Further details on the series is available at

CFP: RiDE: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Fri, 10 Feb 2017

Please note - the closing date for EoIs closes on 5 June.

Themed Issue: Theatre, Dementia and Relationality
 (24, 1. February 2019).


Guest Editors: Nicky Hatton, University of Winchester UK, Michael Balfour and Julie Dunn, Griffith University, Australia.


Over the last two decades, the arts have been increasingly applied in response to the challenges of rising rates of dementia. This growth in practice derives from recognition that, in the absence of a cure, there is a need to develop approaches that address its key impacts of social isolation, depression, and quality of life (QOL). As such, the majority of research that has been conducted about arts and dementia is science-based, with an emphasis on improving the wellbeing of participants.


Arts researchers and practitioners have become increasingly interested in the aesthetic possibilities of arts practices which are created with, for, or inspired by, people with dementia. Theatre research and practice has developed significantly in the last decade, with theatre productions about dementia, creative and participatory work, specially organised theatre visits, theatre projects with a strong inter-generational component, professional theatre companies of older people, multisensory programmes, play readings, and other forms of dementia-friendly theatre movements. Concurrently, there has been a shift in dementia research, from a person-centred approach to care, to one which recognises caregiving as a relational process. Gerontologist Mike Nolan and colleagues argue that dementia care should be defined as ‘a network of social relationships… which are deeply connected and independent (Nolan et al, 2004: 47). The notion of relational care is also being considered by theatre researchers who are interested in the aesthetic connections between care and performance. In his article Towards an aesthetics of care (2015), James Thompson considers the ‘radical potential’ of placing ‘community-engaged arts work within the framework of care’ (432). He suggests that an aesthetics of care ‘seeks to focus upon how the sensory and affective are realised in human relations fostered in art projects’ (436). This research raises new questions about the role of the arts in dementia care, and the relationships between creativity, participation, and care.


In response to this growing area of praxis, this themed edition will explore, critique and document a range of work in this emerging field. We invite proposals from academics, practitioners who are working in the field of theatre and performance studies, social work, critical disability studies, and other related contexts. Contributors may wish to consider, but are by no means restricted to, the following themes: representations of dementia in theatre and performance, multisensory practices, performers with dementia, theatre in care homes, theatre and caregiving, dementia-friendly theatre buildings, engaging care staff and families, and the role of arts-based methodologies. We are interested in submissions in a range of formats, including:

- video and sound file

- research essays (6-8K words)

- interviews, dialogues, and scripts

- practitioner statements

- performance and book reviews




Expressions of interest: 5 June 2017

First drafts: 3 January 2018

Final drafts: July 2018

Final copy deadline: 20 November 2018

Publication: February 2019


Expressions of interest should be 500 words long and submitted by email to


For information about RiDE: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance and its remit please visit: 



ADSA Submission to Senate Select Committee Inquiry into the Government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Wed, 27 May 2020
ADSA has made a submission to the above inquiry.  In our submission we argue that:

• The Australian government’s response to the impact of COVID-19 on the arts sector has done very little to mitigate it; and in a related matter,
• The government must develop an adequate arts and culture policy for post-COVID-19 and beyond.

Since making our submisson, we are pleased that the NSW State Government has pledged $50 million to support the state's arts and cultural organisations.

Our submission has been published and can be read on the link below (submission No. 39).

Glen McGillivray
President, ADSA

CFP: Theatre, Dance and Performance Training

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Wed, 10 Apr 2019
Call for contributions to Special Issue: Training for Performance Art and Live Art

Guest edited by Professor Heike Roms (University of Exeter)

Call Outline

This special issue of Theatre, Dance and Performance Training (TDPT) is interested in the training of performance and live artists – its forms, histories, pedagogies, geographies, institutions and anti-institutions, and its legacies. To speak of ‘training’ in this context may seem surprising as the term evokes notions of tradition, technique and canon that performance and live art have frequently challenged or abandoned altogether. And biographies of performance and live artists often imply that their artistic formation occurred despite rather than because of the formal training they received at art colleges and universities. Yet, the making of performance and live art requires many skills and knowledges, whether embodied or conceptual, compositional or professional, and such skills and knowledges have been the subject of a multiplicity of approaches to their nurture and development.

“Training for Performance Art and Live Art” is interested in tracking the approaches to training in performance and live art as they have emerged both within and outside the contexts of formal education. The histories of performance art and live art are deeply imbricated with those of education and its institutions. Many artists who have shaped performance and live art have also been committed teachers and activists educators; pedagogical approaches to their teaching emerged alongside the performance practices themselves; educational institutions offered material support for the making of performance works and provided a living for its artists; and the integration of performance into their provision has led to changes to the organisational structures and procedures of art schools and universities. At the same time, performance and live artists have devised radical artist-led models of anti-training, created non-institutional spaces of learning and adopted events and publications as alternative forms of curricula.

This call for contributions invites textual, visual or performative submissions (see below) that examine the role that training and education have played for performance and live art. We are particularly keen to receive proposals that explore the theme from an historical perspective; and those that discuss local, translocal, national or transnational contexts for the pedagogical and training histories of performance and live art. We also encourage contributions that evaluate the legacies of these histories, and that assess their continuing relevance and potential for re-activation in the context of today’s predominantly normative, market-driven educational provision. Contributions that explore the methodological implications of documenting and researching what has gone on in the training spaces of performance and live art are also welcome.

The Theatre, Dance and Performance Training journal has three sections:

- “Articles” features contributions in a range of critical and scholarly formats (approx. 5,000-7,000 words)

- “Sources” provides an outlet for the documentation and analysis of primary materials of performer training. We are particularly keen to receive material that documents the histories of performance and live art training in classrooms and studios; or that engages with alternative platforms for training, such as artist’s books, games or kits, festivals or residencies.

- “Training Grounds” hosts shorter pieces, which are not peer reviewed, including essais, postcards, visual essays and book or event reviews. We especially encourage contributions from performance and live art makers, scholars and students that document and reflect on the histories and practices of their training.
We also welcome suggestions for recent books on the theme to be reviewed; or for foundational texts on the topic of performance and live art training to be re-reviewed.

Innovative cross-over print/digital formats are possible, including the submission of audiovisual training materials, which can be housed on the online interactive Theatre, Dance and Performance Training journal blog:

Areas of interest for the Special Issue include (but are not limited to):

• distinct pedagogical approaches to the teaching of performance and live artists
• experimental and alternative modes of training in performance and live art
• models of anti-training in performance
the role of educational institutions in the emergence of performance art and live art
the role of anti-institutional, counter-educational or deschooling initiatives in the emergence of performance art and live art (eg. anti-universities; artist-run schools; cooperatives; workshops; laboratories)
• approaches to learning and ’unlearning’ in performance training
• models of the ‘self-taught’ performance artist
• training as continuing artistic practice
translocal or transnational exchanges and collaborations (eg. festivals; residencies; magazines; mail art) and their impact on the pedagogies of performance and live art
• the impact of key teachers on the development of performance and live art (eg. John Cage; Joseph Beuys; Allan Kaprow; Suzanne Lacy; Alastair MacLennan; Marina Abramovi?; Anthony Howell; Alanna O’Kelly; Doris Stauffer; Roy Ascott; Rose Finn-Kelcey; etc)
• publications on the pedagogy and training of performance and live art (eg. Anthony Howell; Charles Garioan; Marilyn Arsem) and their impact
• artists books; charts; games or kits as alternative curriculum models for performance and live art
• alternative spaces and models for intergenerational exchanges in the framework of teaching and learning performance and live art
• the documentation of teaching practices in the field of performance and live art
• research approaches to the histories of training in performance and live art
• the impact of the ‘pedagogization’ of performance and live art on artistic development
• institutional legacies of performance art training
• strategies for the re-activation of past pedagogies for the future of performance and live art

About Theatre, Dance and Performance Training (TDPT)

Special Issues of Theatre, Dance and Performance Training (TDPT) are an essential part of its offer and complement the open issues in each volume. TDPT is an international academic journal devoted to all aspects of ‘training’ (broadly defined) within the performing arts. It was founded in 2010 and launched its own blog in 2015. Our target readership comprises scholars and the many varieties of professional performers, makers, choreographers, directors, dramaturgs and composers working in theatre, dance, performance and live art who have an interest in the practices of training. TDPT’s co-editors are Jonathan Pitches (University of Leeds) and Libby Worth (Royal Holloway, University of London).

Submitting a proposal:

To signal your interest and intention to make a contribution to this special issue please contact Heike Roms for an initial exchange of ideas/thoughts or email a proposal (max 300 words) to Heike Roms at
Firm proposals for all three sections must be received by 1 May 2019 at the latest.
Please identify the intended format for your proposed contribution; and whether you would like it to be considered for the “Articles”, “Sources” or “Training Ground” section and/or the blog.

Issue Schedule:

1 May 2019: proposals to be submitted to Heike Roms
31 May 2019: Response from editor and, if successful, invitation to submit contribution
June to End August 2019: writing/preparation period
Start Sept to end October 2019: peer review period
November 2019 – end January 2020: author revisions post peer review
June 2020: publication as Issue 11.2

How Can the Show Go On? Performing Arts Wellbeing summit (Sydney) 13 Nov 2017

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, 31 Oct 2017
How Can the Show Go On? Performing Arts Wellbeing summit (Sydney)
Monday, 13 Nov 2017 9.00am - 5.30pm
The Studio, Sydney Opera House

The summit has been developed by the NSW Performing Arts and Screen Working Group with support from Create NSW and industry.

In early 2016, Entertainment Assist released significant research findings on the high rates of mental illness and suicide for workers in the Australian entertainment industry. Sadly, this report reflected other research findings and what many working in the industry already knew from personal experience.

We can do better, says Deborah Mailman who commits not just to getting on with the show but to getting our performing arts and screen industry better.”

The award-winning Australian television and film actress has recorded a special video message in support of the event. Other speakers involved in the conference include Fay Jackson, Deputy Commissioner of NSW Mental Health, Marie Jepson of the Jepson Foundation, and Susan Cooper from Entertainment Assist who will speak about the new national initiative Australian Alliance for Wellness in Entertainment (AAWE).

Lex Marinos will MC the day’s program that includes a NSW sector roundtable led by Entertainment Assist and Everymind to identify AAWE priorities. The summit also includes panels, workshops, as well as practical and inspiring examples of industry and individual approaches to improving wellbeing. It’s a day designed for the sector and those who support them to come together, learn from one another and determine a better future.

“The tyranny of production schedules, low incomes and job security, limited access to support resources, drug and alcohol abuse, isolation and intense competition are aspects of our ‘glamorous industry’ that are often endured in silence and even secrecy,” concludes Mailman. “We can no longer ignore the cost.”

Deborah Mailman has also recorded a Youtube message of support
Tickets for the summit are $35 and include morning/afternoon tea & lunch. They are on sale at:

CFP: Special issue of Research in Drama Education: Performance and Policy

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Glen McGillivray
Status: Current
Date Posted: Wed, 14 Oct 2020
Proposal deadline 13th November 2020 (for publication in August 2022, 27.3)

Co-editors: Molly Mullen (University of Auckland) and Kelly Freebody (University of Sydney)

This themed issue brings a focus to the relationship between applied theatre, applied performance, drama education and policy, seeking new perspectives on this topic. In these fields there has been a longstanding concern with understanding the relationships between policy, funding and practice within institutions and communities, and with the implications of these relationships (Kershaw 1999, Jackson 1993, Neelands 2007 Hughes and Ruding 2009; Mullen 2019). It is evident that this relationship has implications for political, pedagogic, aesthetic and ethical values, approaches and outcomes. This themed issue is interested in profiling diverse and emerging approaches to conceptualising and researching policy and its relationship with practice.

In the broadest sense, policy establishes ‘goals, values and practices’ as the basis for a particular process or programme of action (Laswell and Kaplan 1950, cited in Rosenstein 2018, 13).  Policy is typically ‘orientated toward a problem or set of problems’ (Rosenstein 2018, 13). There is debate, however, about whether policy is a pragmatic response to the need to solve objectively identifiable problems or whether problems are produced or ‘constituted’ via policy (Bacchi 2014). From the latter perspective, policy is treated as a form of governmentality. Understandings of society as governed in ways that go beyond the government open up the scope of what might count as policy. Performance studies scholar Paul Bonin Rodriguez (2014), for example, defines cultural policy as ‘[a]s a set of ‘decisions (by both private and public entities) that either directly or indirectly shape the environment in which the arts are created, disseminated, and consumed, … an admixture of ongoing political, social, and economic projects’ (p. 2). Policies try to ‘get something done’ (Rosenstein 2018, 14). But, their capacity to do so depends, in part, on their legitimisation by a recognised authority. Education scholar, Stephen Ball (1993), makes the important argument that policies are still always open to being de-legitimised or undermined. 

Considering the various perspectives on policy outlined above, one can make clear connections to work in applied theatre, drama education and community theatre. These fields are often oriented to a series of social or policy ‘problems’, whether it be a problematisation of the participants themselves (as marginalised, as silenced, as in need of education) or with less tangible social problems (such as violence, drug addiction, unsafe partying practices and so on). There are examples or traditions of applied theatre and performance with explicit intentions to develop and inform policy, including Boal’s Legislative Theatre. Other practices are directly engaged with challenging or resisting particular policies and their effects. Further, as transdisciplinary practices, drama education and applied theatre often happen in places governed by policy (public and institutional) and operate to bring policy-infused messages to participants, communities, and audiences. Recent scholarship has sought to understand these connections, both implicitly through an exploration of how applied theatre works in societies and institutions (Balfour 2009), and explicitly, through critical analyses of the intersection between theatre, policy, and funding (Mullen 2019). There is a growing recognition that the context work takes place in can have effects on intentions, approach and outcomes. Tensions arise when policy-infused agendas conflict with the needs or desires of participants or key partners. Complicated negotiations are required between competing notions of what is valuable, ‘effective’ or ‘successful’. Policy and funding relationships affect participants, their experience of the work and the terms of their engagement with it. Policy can also impact the nature of facilitators’ labour and positionality. In practice, therefore, policy has profound effects on applied theatre, applied performance, and drama education practitioners. This volume seeks to expand our current thinking about these effects and how they might be negotiated.

We invite papers that consider:
  • Historical and/or critical perspectives on the ways applied theatre is situated in relation to particular policy projects.
  • New theoretical perspectives on the relationships between policy and practice and the impacts or implications of that relationship for participants, partners and practitioners.
  • Scholarship in applied theatre, performance or drama education that is working with new, emerging conceptions of policy or methods for researching policy.
  • Examples of the different ways in which applied theatre, performance and drama education practice is involved in making, enacting, sustaining, subverting, resisting, remaking, re-reading or challenging policy initiatives.
  • Participatory theatre or performance-based policy-making processes, particularly those that serve as an alternative to dominant paradigms of consultation and communication.

We are seeking contributions that consider these topics from a range of levels: micro through to macro, local through to global. We are looking for diverse theoretical and geographical perspectives. We are seeking research-based articles (6-8,000 words), including: case studies, historical studies, theoretical or philosophical approaches, practice-based/led methodologies. We will also consider shorter submissions in the form of interviews or accounts of relevant practice examples (approximately 1,500 words).  

Please send initial proposals of approximately 300 words for articles, interviews and accounts of practice by 13thNovember to the issue guest editors: Molly Mullen ( and Kelly Freebody ( for consideration and feedback. Full articles will be due mid-2021 (please note, full articles will undergo anonymous peer review prior to final acceptance). Final publication for volume 27, issue 3 is expected to be August 2022.