Tag Archive | theater

Position: The Power and Politics of Witnessing; Deadline extended–Proposals due January 17th, 2014

6th Annual Graduate Theatre Syndicate Symposium
The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
February 28th – March 1st, 2014

The Graduate Theatre Syndicate at The Ohio State University proudly presents Position: The Power and Politics of Witnessing in conjunction with the Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee Theatre Research Institute and The Ohio State University Department of Theatre’s production of The House of the Spirits by Caridad Svich. We are currently inviting proposals for the 2014 Graduate Theatre Symposium on February 28th and March 1st in Columbus, Ohio. Caridad Svich will deliver the keynote address. Proposals for traditional conference papers, workshops, performances and more interactive or experimental formats are welcome and encouraged.

Our position in the world impacts not only our experience of the world, but our expression within it. We seek to interrogate the ways in which position, in its many meanings, has impact upon this experience, particularly through memory and witnessing. How does one’s positionality (the position from which one experiences the world – ie. gender, ethnicity, culture, orientation, faith system, socioeconomic background, etc.) affect the narrative of memory? As artists, how might we negotiate our position both in the creation of work as well as in the process of collaboration? How might the notion of position evoke pedagogical considerations?

We invite proposals which focus on the concept of position, memory, and witnessing in ways that might include, but are not limited to:

Position as…

Perspective – a point of view, an argument, a fortification, contextualization, positionality, gender/sex/sexuality, memory.

Society – power/rank/status/authority, privilege, relation to Other, what is appropriate or customary, arrangement.

Embodiment – physical form, body in space, stance, posture, posing, property of the body, athlete, dance, condition, place, locality, geography, environment, memorial.

Occupation – participant, observer/witness, employment, engagement.

Words for consideration: (im)position, (de)position, (pro)position, (juxta)position, (ap)position, (inter)position, (re)position, (super)position, (pre)position, (trans)position.

Proposals are due by January 17th, 2014. Please submit an abstract of no more than 250-words, along with your name, contact information, affiliation, type of proposal (paper, workshop, performance, other) and any A/V requests. Submit proposals and any questions to Elizabeth Wellman at theatresyndicate@gmail.com.


CALL FOR PAPERS: Agôn – Online Performing Arts Journal, issue 6

Reperformance – April 15, 2013

The journal Agôn dedicates its 6th issue to the question of reperformance, to be released in January 2014.

The words “reperformance,” “rerun,” and “revival” gradually appeared in recent theater programming, competing with those of “original creation.” In a context of crisis, as cultural policies and theater initiatives turn more and more to the known, a phenomenon of cultural heritage building seems to directly affect the performing arts. Moving towards performances that come from the past, thereby becoming references and events, programmers as well as artists seem to make reperformance a new practice. This exercise changes according to each live art’s specificities, and it has triggered reflection across artistic fields[1].

We are thus interested in asking the question in a global, cross-disciplinary and contemporary way: of what is reperformance a sign? Is reperformance a way to fill the theaters in times of crisis; a new mode of access to knowledge (of a work, of an artist…)[2]; a need for the arts to celebrate – from anniversary to commemoration – its great men, its highlights, and its great
works[3]; a means for the artist to legitimize his/her artistic approach by relying on major references; a relation to creation oriented towards the past; or a new lever of creativity for artists, stretched between memory and the present?

In front of the stereotypes regarding live arts – ‘live’ implying ephemeral, volatile, and thus evasive, the question of reperformance allows us to consider differently the threadbare questions of reproduction, repetition, copy, and variation. Live arts as ephemeral? Yes, if you remember, reperformance seems to say. Thinking about the reperformance is also thinking about the constitution of what makes it possible, in its writing, conservation, accessibility and possible replay. The exercise of reperformance explores memory in all its forms, written memory, bodily memory, oral memory, and juggles from one to another to invent its own process and its dramaturgy. Reperformance cannot be dissociated from that on which it is based: the trace, the archive, the document, the score, the recording – at a time of multiplication of these different media and of development of memory initiatives associated with them – but also the personal memory, the testimony, the experience of a body. It stages a memory that plays out through and in the representation and the shared experience that live arts offer and renew every evening.

Beyond that, the injunction of the trace, the testimony, and the document seems to reveal our contemporary taste for the real and invites us to consider reperformance not only as a phenomenon of memory but as a trademark of the performing arts – every performance being inspired and studded by performances that preceded it, consciously or not[4]. One can then look at the practices of borrowing, copying, pasting, editing, and ask the question of what constitutes reperformance: the full reproduction of a mise-en-scene, the transmission of a role, borrowing one or more elements, texts, choreographies…? If there appears to be no expiration date for a show, when does a performance become reperformance?

We invite articles that think and explore reperformance around four main

– Reperformance as a marking of time: anniversaries, best of, tributes, commemorations… the creation of these new “lieux de mémoire” – in the words of Pierre Nora – questions both the political and economic logics and the legitimization process that underlies them.

– The reception of reperformance: to whom is the reperformance addressed? Is the memory of the show strong enough that the viewer who comes back and sees again can measure the reperformance? What is at stake in this strange event that makes one say “I was there”?

– The mechanisms of reperformance: reconstitution, recreation, reconstruction, reactivation, reenactment, restored behavior, second-hand … There can only be reperformance if there is first a take on the past: what are the processes used to resume, recover, quote, compile? What name to give the original being copied?

– Issues of memory, issues of creation: what is left of the original work? Who is the author of the reperformance? What does it mean to re-perform a work in a new historical, political and social context, with different performers, with the same but older? All these questions take place in the exploration of the differences between a version and its reperformance, where truth and fiction and existing and new cohabit.

Contributions may address all art forms – theater, dance, opera, circus, street theater, puppet, performance… – and all geographical areas. Though we want to ask the question of reperformance on contemporary stages, historical and aesthetic perspectives are not excluded.

Send your anonymous proposal (3000 characters maximum, including spaces) in English or in French before April 15, 2013 in .doc format, with a brief CV in a separate document to the following address: agon.reprise@gmail.com

The journal welcomes images, graphics, sound files (.mp3 format – 44.1GHz encoded) and videos (.flv format) provided they are in good standing with the legislation on copyright, image rights and broadcasting rights.

We advise contributors to see the latest issues of the journal Agôn (http://agon.ens-lyon.fr/index.php?id=142) to know the spirit in which they are directed – note: former issues are in French.

We also invite them to look at the investigation on the memory of spectators of Bob Wilson’s *Einstein on the Beach*, conducted on the occasion of its reperformance at the Opéra de Montpellier last March (http://agon.ens-lyon.fr/index.php?id=2166) – an investigation that fed the premise of this issue.


[1] We will mention here as examples the work on notation and score in dance, the Knust Quartet, les Carnets Bagouet, the reconstitution of the *Rite of Spring*, the work of Marina Nordera and Béatrice Massin, the collection of articles under the direction of Isabelle Launay and Sylviane Pages: *Memory and History in Dance*, another collection under the direction of Gérard-Denis Farcy and Vincent Amiel, *Alert Memory: Archives in Creation*, the work on
the stage as a place of memory at the University Rennes 2, Brigitte Prost’s work on the notion of repertoire, *Performance Studies: An Introduction* by Richard Schechner, etc.

[2] Robert Cantarella gives a recent example of this when he re-performs Gilles Deleuze’s classes in his show *Faire le Gilles.*

[3] Stan’s anniversaries, *Panorama* by Decouflé, *Dance *by Lucinda Childs, the
revival of *Einstein on the Beach* in 2012…

[4] « Performances are made of bits of restored behavior. » Schechner, Richard, *Performance studies: an introduction*. London, New York: Routledge, 2002, p. 30.

Shifting Boundaries/Crossing Cultures schedule announced

The Graduate Theatre Syndicate at The Ohio State University has announced the schedule for its fifth annual symposium:

“Shifting Boundaries/Crossing Cultures: the Politics, Process, and Performance of Collaboration”

April 5th and 6th, 2013
Drake Performance and Events Center
Columbus, OH

See the page for full details: Shifting Boundaries/Crossing Cultures

February events reminder

The Performance/Politics Working Group would like to extend an invitation for our February events. Acclaimed performance artist Tim Miller will be talking about his career and performing excerpts of his work on Feb. 18th at 2:30, and OSU Professor of Music Dr. Danielle Fossler-Lussier will be giving a lecture on Feb. 25th at 4:30.

Check out our Upcoming Events page to get more information on these two events.

Hot off the press: we’ve also just heard that the comedian, writer, and performer Marga Gomez will be at the Ohio Union on Feb. 15th at 8:00 for Q-PID: A Comedy & Dance Extravaganza!

This semester is full of great presentations. We hope you can join us!


Call for Papers, “Shifting Boundaries/Crossing Cultures: the Politics, Process, and Performance of Collaboration”

Deadline for submission is January 15, 2013

The Graduate Theatre Syndicate at The Ohio State University will host “Shifting Boundaries/Crossing Cultures: the Politics, Process, and Performance of Collaboration,” April 5th and 6th, 2013. We are pleased to announce that the keynote speaker for the conference will be Stephen Wangh, who studied with Jerzy Grotowski in 1967 and is the author of An Acrobat of the Heart. His playwriting credits include work as an Associate Writer for The Laramie Project, The People’s Temple, which won the Glickman Award for Best Play in the Bay Area, 2005, and many other collaborative works. Additionally, Stephen Wangh has taught physical acting technique in the United States and Europe. In addition to his keynote address, he will teach a workshop for conference attendees. His new book, entitled The Heart of Teaching, is due out this winter. This conference will be concurrent with the university’s production of aPOEtheosis, a devised piece of theatre created by U.S. director Joe Brandesky, and Czech theatre artist Petr Matásek. Brandesky and Matásek will be discussing their work on the performance during the conference.

Collaboration between disciplines and across borders presents a unique set of challenges even as it becomes ubiquitous in artistic and professional pursuits. Collaborative work also offers an opportunity to examine the ways in which politics implicitly and explicitly inform our practices. In addition to conference-style papers, we particularly welcome workshops, performances, or other non-traditional methods of engaging in dialogues which address the personal/political/ cultural negotiations inherent in any collaboration, creative or otherwise. Some of the questions we hope may be addressed by the conference include, but are certainly not limited to the following:

• How does collaboration trouble our own sense of space, challenge our concept of equality, and force us to redefine our expectations?
• What role can/should collaboration play in pedagogical practice?
• How has the rapid evolution of networking technology shifted our understanding of collaboration and the processes by which we collaborate with others?
• What challenges are presented in interdisciplinary collaboration and what strategies may be deployed to overcome them?
• How does inter-cultural collaboration shift the boundary between public and private?
• Can collaboration be considered a diachronic phenomenon? For example, in what ways do writers engage in collaboration with their predecessors and previous cultures through adaptation or translation, or with their audiences and future cultures through reception?
• How does acculturation influence the negotiation of international collaboration?

Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words in Word or PDF format, along with affiliation and contact info to Geoffrey Wilson at wilson.2428@osu.edu.
Deadline for submission is 15 January 2013. Panelists selected for the conference will be notified by the first of February.

Geoffrey Wilson
Vice-President, Graduate Theatre Syndicate
Department of Theatre
The Ohio State University

November events reminder

The Performance/Politics Working Group is meeting to discuss The Builders Association’s new work SONTAG: REBORN.

The Wexner Center is welcoming us to attend the talk back with the artists on Friday, November 16, 2013 at 2:30 at the Wexner Center Film Video theatre and The Performance/Politics Working Group is also hosting a discussion of the work, led by Dr. Jennifer Schlueter (Assistant Professor, Theatre) and Francesca Spedalieri (PhD Candidate, Theatre), on Monday, November 19 at 6:00-7:00 PM at the George Wells Knight House, 104 East 15th Avenue.

Please see Upcoming Events for additional information and links to readings.

We hope to see you there!