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Performing Ecologies Conference

Registrations open

Performing Ecologies: An interdisciplinary conference hosted by The Performance of the Real Research Theme

Earlybird Registration closes on 23rd October 2018.

Go to Registration Page

Keynote presenters

  • Emeritus Professor Baz Kershaw (School of Theatre & Performance Studies and Cultural & Media Policy Studies, University of Warwick, United Kingdom)
  • Louise Potiki-Bryant (Ngāi Tahu Choreographer - Dancer - Video Artist)

Emeritus Professor Baz Kershaw is at the School of Theatre & Performance Studies and Cultural & Media Policy Studies, University of Warwick, United Kingdom, and is author of Theatre Ecology (2007). Baz has directed PARIP (2000-06) investigating performance as research. His projects in experimental/community/radical theatre include shows at London’s Drury Lane Arts Lab, with Welfare State International, and since 2000 several eco-specific events in southwest England. Publications include Politics of Performance (1992), Radical in Performance (1999), Theatre Ecology (2007) and Research Methods in Theatre and Performance (2011: with Helen Nicholson

Louise Potiki-Bryant is a Ngāi Tahu choreographer, dancer, and video artist. With her artistic practice Louise aims to honour her whakapapa (genealogy), and relationship to the whenua (land). Louise is a founding member and choreographer of Atamira. She has also choreographed for companies such as Black Grace Dance Company, The New Zealand Dance Company and Ōrotokare, Art, Story, Motion.

Keynote Panel

On Monday 21st November we are holding a public keynote panel talk as part of the conference, the working title of which is “Performing Community Ecologies”. The speakers on this panel are

  • Professor Phil Bishop
  • Professor Dorita Hannah
  • Dr Jenny Rock

Dr Phil Bishop is a passionate amphibian advocate. He is the Co-Chair of the IUCN Amphibian Specialist Group and the Chief Scientist of the Amphibian Survival Alliance where he coordinates the conservation of amphibians around the World. He specialises in amphibian conservation and ecology, working on improving methods for frog translocations, discovering new aspects of frog biology, encouraging local communities to assist with monitoring endangered frog populations and improving environmental education about amphibians.

Professor Dorita Hannah is an independent artist, curator, performance designer, theatre architect and event dramaturg aligned with the University of Auckland (NZ), UTAS (Australia) and Aalto (Finland). Her creative practice focuses on designing and curating live events, installations and exhibitions, as well as performance venues. Her publications include Performance Design (2008) and Event-Space: Theatre Architecture & the Historical Avant-Garde (2018). She co-curated Performance Studies International’s Fluid States event in 2015: a globally dispersed festival of events for which she co-directed Sea-Change: Performing a Fluid Continent in the Cook Islands.

Dr Jenny Rock has backgrounds in science and art. She has spent more than 20 years as a scientific researcher (particularly in marine biology) and is a printmaker, as well as occasional poet. Currently she is a Senior Lecturer in Science Communication at the University of Otago, focusing on aesthetics, participatory practice, visual cognition, and ArtScience.

About the conference

The current “ecological crisis” has become a major contention, forming a variety of compelling performances which mediate and serve a complex nexus of political, ethical and social agendas. Indeed, many writers on ecology are increasingly arguing that we have to face the fact that the world is, so to speak, “in the shit”, and that, somehow, we have to learn to live with/in it. Besides attracting considerable media attention, there are questions raised around how performance – in a broad sense – might contribute to the discussion and work towards a more promising ecological future.

By drawing together scholars and creative practitioners from a variety of fields to focus on the subject of ‘performing ecologies’, this interdisciplinary conference thus aims to provoke consideration of the role that performance and creative practice can and does play in our ‘learning to live with/in’ this “ecological crisis”.

We invite interdisciplinary and discipline–specific responses to any of the following provocations:

  • Ecocritical research of and through performance
  • Media framings and performances of ecology, the “ecological crisis” and climate change (post-truth)
  • The performance of “nature” and particular environments
  • Ecomimesis (Timothy Morton, 2007)
  • The efficacy of performing ecologies; what performance might ‘do’
  • The use of the environment in performance – such as site-specific theatre
  • Dark ecology
  • Performances of apocalypse / dystopic future
  • Affective ecologies
  • ‘Morality’ performances and mediations
  • The performance of environmental activism/ protest
  • Performances of ecology in/for tourism
  • Ecologies in indigenous paradigms
  • Performances of the Anthropocene
  • The performance of posthumanism and the environment

To register for the conference please click here.

About the Performance of the Real Research Theme

The Performance of the Real is a University of Otago funded interdisciplinary Research Theme. The project is to investigate what it is about representations and performances of the real that make them particularly compelling and pervasive in our current age. At its core is the study of how performance/performativity, in its many cultural, aesthetic, political and social forms and discourses, represents, critiques, stages, and constructs/reconstructs the real, as well as the ethical, social and form-related issues involved in such acts.

Date Wednesday, 21 November 2018 - Friday, 23 November 2018
Time 9:00am - 1:00pm
Audience Public,All University
Event Category Humanities
Event Type Conference
DepartmentMedia, Film and Communication, Tourism, English and Linguistics, Politics
LocationAllen Hall Theatre and Orokonui Ecosanctuary
CostPlease see registration page when available.
Contact NameAlex Wilson

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