CFP: 4th Annual NRN Symposium, ‘Marking Time’

The Society for Theatre Research

New Researchers’ Network

Fourth Annual Symposium

Marking Time

21st June 2017

University of Roehampton 

The Society for Theatre Research’s (STR) New Researchers’ Network (NRN) is delighted to announce their fourth annual symposium, which will centre on the theme of Marking Time within performance, research, and our lives.

Time is a significant factor in everything we do. We organise our lives by dividing time into measurable units (seconds, minutes, hours, days, years), and remain constantly aware of its passing as we grow older. The societal desire to mark time also results in a culture of commemoration: prominent events and figures from the past are memorialised through anniversaries, and many organisations exist to further historical legacies.

How is time represented in contemporary and/or historical performance, and how does an awareness of time’s passing impact upon research methodologies? To what extent does our real and imagined relationship with the past impact upon contemporary culture?

Areas of interest might include (but are not limited to):

  • The significance of anniversaries and commemoration culture (i.e. Shakespeare 400, the Easter Rising centenary, and the ongoing commemoration of WWI)
  • The marking of time through space, movement, and live art
  • Popular performance and construction of legacies (i.e. Hamilton)
  • Constructing the passage of time in performance
  • Issues of marking time in methodologies in theatre and performance studies
  • Histories of theatre companies, theatre buildings, and theatre collectives
  • Genealogies of performance
  • Period dress and reconstruction; the desire to replicate obsolete theatrical and cultural practices
  • Constructing (and performing) the theatre archive
  • Time as a social construct; how we perform notions of time in our everyday lives
  • Performance that responds to critical moments in national/international history and culture (i.e. Brexit, the recent US election, the Iraq War, the Leveson Inquiry)

The NRN welcomes abstracts (maximum 250 words) for 20-minute conference presentations or creative responses that relate to the symposium theme. Abstract submissions should be directed to the NRN Committee at nrn@str.org.uk; the deadline for submissions is 23:59 GMT on Monday 22nd May. Applicants will be notified of the results by Friday 26th May. For any further details, please don’t hesitate to contact the NRN via email: nrn@str.org.uk

The NRN symposium has a keynote speaker!

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We are very excited to announce that Prof. Matthew Reason (York St John University) will be the keynote speaker at our symposium this June! (That sound you hear is the entire NRN committee collectively emitting squeals of joy.)

Prof. Reason’s research interests largely concern audiences, theatre for children, liveness, performance documentation, and reflective practice — some of which are very pertinent concerns for our symposium this year. He is the author of Documentation, Disappearance and the Representation of Live Performance (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006) and The Young Audience: Exploring and Enhancing Children’s Experiences of Theatre (Trentham Books, 2010). You can read more about his work here. In fact, the title of our symposium derives from his New Theatre Quarterly article, ‘Archive or Memory? The Detritus of Live Performance’, which we all thoroughly recommend you should read. (It is indeed very good.)

We’re very excited to hear him speak at the symposium this year, and we hope you are too! Get those abstracts in!

APGRD/University of London Joint Postgraduate Symposium On Ancient Drama, June 2015: ‘Viewing and Spectating in the Theory and Practice of Greek and Roman Drama’

15th ANNUAL JOINT POSTGRADUATE SYMPOSIUM ON ANCIENT DRAMA, JUNE 2015:

‘Viewing and Spectating in the Theory and Practice of Greek and Roman Drama’

CALL FOR PAPERS

The 15th Annual APGRD / University of London Joint Postgraduate Symposium on the Performance of Ancient Drama will take place on Monday 29 June (at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, London) and Tuesday 30 June (at the Ioannou Centre, Oxford). This year’s theme will be: ‘Viewing and Spectating in the Theory and Practice of Greek and Roman Drama’. Abstracts of papers should be sent by 31 March 2015 to postgradsymp@classics.ox.ac.uk (please include details of your current course of study, supervisor and academic institution).

ABOUT THE SYMPOSIUM

This annual Symposium focuses on the reception of Greek and Roman tragedy and comedy, exploring the afterlife of these ancient dramatic texts through re-workings by both writers and practitioners across all genres and periods. Speakers from a number of countries will give papers on the reception of Greek and Roman drama. This year’s guest respondents will be Yana Zarifi (Thiasos Theatre Company) and Margaret Coldiron (Director and specialist in Asian performance). Among those present at this year’s symposium will be Prof. Edith Hall, Prof. Oliver Taplin, and Prof. Fiona Macintosh. The symposium will conclude on the second day, in Oxford, with a discussion and performance of Gardzienice’s Pythian Oratorio.

PARTICIPANTS

Postgraduates from around the world working on the reception of Greek and Roman drama are welcome to participate, as are those who have completed a doctorate but not yet taken up a post. The symposium is open to speakers from different disciplines, including researchers in the fields of Classics, modern languages and literature, and theatre and performance studies.

Practitioners are welcome to contribute their personal experience of working on ancient drama. Papers may also include demonstrations. Undergraduates are very welcome to attend.

Those who wish to offer a short paper (20 mins) or performative presentation on ‘Viewing and Spectating in the Theory and Practice of Greek and Roman Drama’ are invited to send an abstract of up to 200 words outlining the proposed subject of their discussion to postgradsymp@classics.ox.ac.uk by TUESDAY 31st MARCH 2015 AT THE LATEST (please include details of your current course of study, supervisor and academic institution).

There will be no registration fee. Some travel bursaries will be available this year – please indicate if you would like to be considered for one of these.

CONTACT FOR ENQUIRIES: postgradsymp@classics.ox.ac.uk

CFP: New Researchers’ Network Second Annual Symposium — ‘Dumb objects, spoken for’? On Archives and Documentation

We are proud to announce details of our upcoming annual symposium, to be held at the Shard on 19th June 2015. Please share this widely with your networks and contacts.

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The Society for Theatre Research

New Researchers’ Network

Second Annual Symposium

Call for Papers:

“Dumb objects, spoken for”? On Performance Archives and Documentation

Friday 19th June 2015

The Shard

17th Floor, Warwick Business School

32 London Bridge Street, London, SE1 9SG

The Society for Theatre Research’s (STR) New Researchers’ Network (NRN) is pleased to announce their second annual symposium, which will centre on the theme of Archives and Documentation.

In recent years scholars have taken greater interest in the documentation of live performance and the construction and curation of archives. The foundations of these ideas can be found in Foucault’s Archaeology of Knowledge (1969) and Derrida’s Archive Fever (1995), as well as more recent texts by Carolyn Steedman (Dust, 2001) and Helen Freshwater (‘The Allure of the Archive,’ 2003). Matthew Reason (‘Archive or Memory,’ 2003) suggests that a more nuanced understanding of human memory may offer ways to further explore the relationship between the live performance and its documents, and argues that an honest assessment of the archive must overtly perform the fact that it consists of ‘dumb objects not allowed to speak for themselves, but spoken for’.

These discussions have been recurring themes at the NRN’s events this year, in part due to the development of new technologies which simplify both the archiving and accessing of material. As new researchers, we are at the forefront of the developing field of new and exciting archival technologies, and whilst these new ways of archiving can bring exciting discoveries and increased accessibility, they also bring new challenges and difficulties. For example, digitisation is an expensive and time-consuming process, and as a result, which archives are catalogued, searchable, and accessible online is an increasingly political matter.

Other questions, raised at an NRN study day at the Live Art Development Agency, relate to the relationship between live performance and the ‘mad fragmentations’ (Steedman 2001) which form the collections of theatre archives. What does it mean to intentionally document a performance? How much can we really learn about past performance through the ephemera (flyers, prompt-scripts, photographs) which somehow, against all odds, now possess call numbers and item descriptions in our archives? How do those who curate theatre collections decide which of these scraps of paper merit preservation? What does it mean for those of us researching past performance that these processes of selection remain largely opaque?

In a recent talk as part of the STR’s Annual Lecture Series, Prof. Heike Roms acknowledged the trend for theatre and performance historians to abandon the archive in favour of more performative methods of research. While Jacky Bratton has used walking as a research tool in her book The Making of the West End Stage, others have used reenactment or reconstruction as part of their methodology to answer questions about theatre and performance. As a result, Roms asked ‘what is at stake in approaching historical evidence as event?’.

We invite proposals for papers that may consider, but are not limited to, the following topics:

  • Historical evidence as event

  • Archives in the digital age and the future of the archive

  • The archivist as curator

  • The benefits and problems of legalising and copyrighting art work

  • The performativity of the archive

  • The detritus of performance

  • Beyond the archive: Walking, Mapping and Re-Enacting

The NRN Committee welcomes proposals for papers of up to fifteen minutes from new scholars, postgraduates, and early career researchers, on any aspect of the conference theme, broadly interpreted.  Abstracts of up to 250 words should be submitted to nrn@str.org.uk by 20th March 2015. Successful applicants will be contacted by 20th April. The papers will be arranged into panel groups sharing a common theme; although we anticipate receiving a majority of proposals as single papers, we will also accept proposals for three-paper curated panels.

For queries, please contact Claire Read and Nora Williams on behalf of the NRN Committee: nrn@str.org.uk

For more details on the NRN, see http://www.strnrn.org

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