Matching Items (47)

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Performing nation, performing trauma: theatre and performance after September 11th, Hurricane Katrina and the Peruvian dirty war

Description

Traumas are moments which disrupt a way of being, often involving death or injury and a period of recovery for its survivors. They can be personal, experienced by an individual, or collective, experienced by a group of individuals, such as

Traumas are moments which disrupt a way of being, often involving death or injury and a period of recovery for its survivors. They can be personal, experienced by an individual, or collective, experienced by a group of individuals, such as a family. Others, like the bombing of Hiroshima, impact much larger communities, such as an entire town, an entire nation, or even the world. These national traumas often include large-scale death or injury and impact the lives of thousands. In addition to their immediate physical and material affects (mortalities, economic impact, creating a need for aid), these events shatter not only an individual's sense of well- being, but also larger notions of national identity, stability and security. In many cases, they also reveal the limits of prevailing concepts of national cohesiveness, citizenship and belonging while often simultaneously upholding or reconstructing newly problematic concepts of national cohesion. Traumas are documented and grappled with through various media, including literature, poetry, art, photography, and journalism. This dissertation, "Performing Nation, Performing Trauma: Theatre and Performance after September 11th, Hurricane Katrina and the Peruvian Dirty War" examines how theatre and performance are utilized to respond to, document, memorialize and represent national traumas resulting from such historical crises as the Peruvian Dirty Wars, Hurricane Katrina, and September 11th, as well as how they resist dominant narratives that construct national traumas as such. These traumas are relived and expressed through performance perhaps precisely because the members of a nation (consciously or subconsciously) recognize that nation is also performed. This dissertation focuses on both the content of and the reception of these performances and the particular implications that performances about national traumas hold for theatre critics/scholars, performance practitioners and audience members (those immediately connected and not so obviously connected to the event).

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Date Created
2011

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The representation of Taiwanese childhood as reflected in Taiwanese theatre for young audience of the Taipei Children's Arts Festival 2000-2011

Description

The construction of the contemporary Taiwanese child and childhood has been under-researched. It is often understood solely in contrast to a Western context as a mysterious or even exotic existence. However, this understanding differs from what I discovered in my

The construction of the contemporary Taiwanese child and childhood has been under-researched. It is often understood solely in contrast to a Western context as a mysterious or even exotic existence. However, this understanding differs from what I discovered in my literary reviews, which reveal many similarities - not differences - with respect to the philosophical views of the child and childhood between the so-called "East" and "West." To gain a better understanding of the Taiwanese child and childhood, I chose the annual Taipei Children's Arts Festival (TCAF) as my main research subject and adopted grounded theory and dramatic analysis as my research methods to explore the following question: What are the representations of the Taiwanese child and childhood as reflected by the cultural artifacts of TCAF between 2000 and 2011? TCAF is the largest children's arts festival in Taiwan and theatre for young audiences (TYA) has been its main component. I therefore selected four award winning TCAF plays and their production videos as my main data. Additional data consists of forewords from the programs, which were written by mayors of Taipei City, commissioners of Taipei's Department of Cultural Affairs, and festival organizers. To provide context, I give a brief history of Taiwanese children's theatre before beginning the main analysis. My findings indicate a complex construction of the Taiwanese child and childhood. The central category states that Taiwanese children are constructed as adults' futures. This explains adults' desires to preserve children's positive qualities, and reflects adults' emphasis on learning and teaching, children's agency, and their happiness. Determining one central category/hypothesis proved to be difficult, due to the variety and complexity of my data. Missing categories include concepts of the unconscious child and children's relationships to religion, family, friendships, and gender issues. The distinctions between children and adults are both distinct and ambiguous. Although differences of the East/West binary exist, social constructions of the child and childhood become increasingly similar as the world becomes more fluid. My research highlights a variety of such elements. Future research is still needed, however, in order to broaden and deepen the understanding of the Taiwanese child and childhood.

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2012

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The adolescent's voice: how theatre participation impacts high schoolers and college students

Description

This dissertation is a qualitative study based on the experiences of five high schoolers and five college-aged students who grew up in Erie, Pennsylvania, and participated in theatrical productions within their schools, churches, the Erie Playhouse Youtheatre, and other community

This dissertation is a qualitative study based on the experiences of five high schoolers and five college-aged students who grew up in Erie, Pennsylvania, and participated in theatrical productions within their schools, churches, the Erie Playhouse Youtheatre, and other community theatres. The author begins with an introduction of the theatrical scene in Erie and explains the options available to these youth during the times they performed, so the reader will have a better understanding of the background of these young people. The author then explores the current literature dealing with youth participants in a youth theatre setting. In his research, he notes that there were few scholarly books or articles that directly dealt with youth who participate in youth theatre. Most of the books dealt with youth who are part of theatrical programs in school settings, and few researchers utilized the youth's voice as part of the process. The author interviewed ten participants about their theatrical experiences asking them about aspects such as: positive and negative experiences, why they performed, and what they learned from doing theatre. After transcribing the interviews, the author analyzed the participants' responses for values, attitudes, and beliefs about theatre. From this analysis, the author found six themes emerged focusing on: fun, friendship, family, personal growth, commitment to productions, and negative experiences in the theatrical process. Throughout the document, the author utilized the youths' voices and kept their words and thoughts as the basis for all findings constructed and discussed.

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2014

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Constructivism in the acting classroom: a comprehensive approach to teaching practical aesthetics, voice, and movement

Description

This dissertation uses constructivist pedagogy to teach acting via Practical Aesthetics, a system of actor training created in the mid/&ndash1980s; by David Mamet and his college acting students. Primarily taught at the Atlantic Theatre Acting School in New York City,

This dissertation uses constructivist pedagogy to teach acting via Practical Aesthetics, a system of actor training created in the mid/&ndash1980s; by David Mamet and his college acting students. Primarily taught at the Atlantic Theatre Acting School in New York City, Practical Aesthetics has been the focus of little academic research. The same lack of research regarding constructivist pedagogy exists in academic theatre scholarship. The author takes a step toward rectifying this situation. Using an action research methodology, based on approximately thirteen years of teaching experience, the author suggests that Practical Aesthetics and his accompanying voice and movement exercises can be effective in training novice actors. The author melds theory and practice into the educational approach called Praxis to create specific detailed lesson plans which can be used to implement Practical Aesthetics. These lessons constitute primary research on this topic. Compatible voice and movement exercises are also included to provide a comprehensive semester length digest. The first chapter is an introduction, the second outlines Practical Aesthetics, the third focuses on constructivism, the fourth discusses teaching acting using Constructivist Learning Design, the fifth provides narrative lessons that can be used in the classroom, and the closure provides a review as well as suggestions for further research. An intriguing point made in the closure is a call for studies that might determine Practical Aesthetics' applicability and usability in other fields such as law, business, politics, public speaking, and even non-profit work. Although the primary audience for this dissertation is secondary school and college acting instructors, any scholar studying acting theory or constructivist pedagogy may find value in its contents.

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Date Created
2014

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Digital Shakespeares and the performance of relevance

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“Digital Shakespeares” is a study of the ways that Shakespearean theaters and festivals are incorporating digital media into their marketing and performance practices at the beginning of the twenty-first century. The project integrates Shakespeare studies, performance studies, and digital media

“Digital Shakespeares” is a study of the ways that Shakespearean theaters and festivals are incorporating digital media into their marketing and performance practices at the beginning of the twenty-first century. The project integrates Shakespeare studies, performance studies, and digital media and internet studies to explore how digital media are integral to the practices of four North American and British Shakespearean performance institutions: the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Royal Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare’s Globe, and the Stratford (Canada) Festival. Through an analysis of their performance and marketing practices, I argue that digital media present an opportunity to reevaluate concepts of performance and relevance, and explore the implications such reevaluations have on the future of Shakespearean performance. The project addresses institutions’ digital media practices through the lens of four concepts—access, marketing, education, and performance—to conclude that theaters and festivals are finding it necessary to adopt practices from multiple media to stay viable in today’s online attention economy. The first chapter considers the issue of access, exploring the influence of social media on audience-institution interactions as theaters and festivals establish online presences on sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Chapter two argues that theaters and festivals incorporate digital media into their outreach through poaching the practices of other media and cultural institutions as they strive to become relevant to their online audiences by appealing through the newness of digital media. Chapter three focuses on two digital educational outreach programs, the Globe’s Playing Shakespeare and the RSC’s Young Shakespeare Nation, to understand how each institution seeks to employ digital media to make their educational audiences life-long lovers of Shakespearean performance. Throughout the final chapter, I analyze potential models for incorporating digital media into Shakespearean performance, both in performances that bring digital media onto the stage and in performances that use social media as the platform for dramatic performance. Ultimately, I argue digital media have become an integral part of the practices Shakespearean performance institutions use to establish and sustain their cultural relevance with modern audiences, while raising questions regarding the implications of those practices in an increasingly globalized world.

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2016

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In the penal colony

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ABSTRACT "In the Penal Colony" is a three-act play based on the original short story by Franz Kafka and adapted by ASU MFA playwright Christian Krauspe. Told in flashback-form; a lone female Traveler arrives at a nameless penal colony where

ABSTRACT "In the Penal Colony" is a three-act play based on the original short story by Franz Kafka and adapted by ASU MFA playwright Christian Krauspe. Told in flashback-form; a lone female Traveler arrives at a nameless penal colony where she is asked to comment on an old execution device known simply as, "the apparatus." She is pressured by the colonies administration to condone the practice while simultaneously asked to endorse the machine by her guiding officer in hopes of preserving the mystical powers the apparatus seems to possess. The Traveler must make the choice to endorse or condone the machine while she faces her own demons in the process.

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Date Created
2011

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Heterotopias of power: miners, Mapuche, and soldiers in the production of the utopian Chile

Description

Drawing from Foucault's notion of heterotopias, my dissertation identifies and examines three distinct but related events that resignified (re-imagined) Chile during 2010, the year of its Bicentenary, namely: the Rescue of the 33 Miners trapped in the San José mine,

Drawing from Foucault's notion of heterotopias, my dissertation identifies and examines three distinct but related events that resignified (re-imagined) Chile during 2010, the year of its Bicentenary, namely: the Rescue of the 33 Miners trapped in the San José mine, the Chilean Military Parade performed in celebration of Chilean Independence, and the Mapuche Hunger Strike of 32 indigenous people accused of terrorism by the Chilean State. My central hypothesis states that these three events constitute heterotopias with strong performative components that, by enacting a utopian and a dystopian nation, denounce the flaws of Chilean society. I understand heterotopias as those recursive systems that invert, perfect or contest the society they mirror. In other words: heterotopias are discursive constructions and material manifestations of social relations that dispute, support, or distort cultural assumptions, structures, and practices currently operating in the representational spaces of a given society. In addition to following the six heterotopological principles formulated by Foucault, these case studies have performance as the central constituent that defines their specificity and brings the heterotopias into existence. Due to the performative nature of these heterotopias, I have come to call them performance heterotopias, that is, sets of behaviors that enact utopias in the historical world, the place in which we live, the site in which "the erosion of our lives, our time and our history occurs," as Foucault puts it. Here, performance would act as the interface, the point of interaction, and suture between the conceived, the perceived and the representational spaces each heterotopia articulates. Thus, a performance heterotopia would be a particular type of heterotopia which is enacted through performance. A relevant aspect that emerged from my research is that heterotopic places not only mirror, contest, and compensate their own host society, but also refer to, and intersect with other contemporaneous heterotopias enacted in that society. In my conclusion I suggest that such interactions also happen between heterotopias that emerge in different countries and cultures. If so, the mapping of utopias enacted in the macro socio geographies of Latin American countries could offer new perspectives to understand the sociopolitical processes that are underway in the region.

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2011

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Confronting convention: discourse and innovation in contemporary native American women's theatre

Description

In this dissertation, I focus on a subset of Native American theatre, one that concentrates on peoples of mixed heritages and the place(s) between worlds that they inhabit. As it is an emergent field of research, one goal of this

In this dissertation, I focus on a subset of Native American theatre, one that concentrates on peoples of mixed heritages and the place(s) between worlds that they inhabit. As it is an emergent field of research, one goal of this project is to illuminate its range and depth through an examination of three specific points of focus - plays by Elvira and Hortencia Colorado (Chichimec Otomí/México/US), who create theatre together; Diane Glancy (Cherokee/US); and Marie Clements (Métis/Canada). These plays explore some of the possibilities of (hi)story, culture, and language within the theatrical realm across Turtle Island (North America). I believe the playwrights' positionalities in the liminal space between Native and non-Native realms afford these playwrights a unique ability to facilitate cross-cultural dialogues through recentering Native stories and methodologies. I examine the theatrical works of this select group of mixed heritage playwrights, while focusing on how they open up dialogue(s) between cultures, the larger cultural discourses with which they engage, and their innovations in creating these dialogues. While each playwright features specific mixed heritage characters in certain plays, the focus is generally on the subject matter - themes central to current Native and mixed heritage daily realities. I concentrate on where they engage in cross-cultural discourses and innovations; while there are some common themes across the dissertation, the specific points of analysis are exclusive to each chapter. I employ an interdisciplinary approach, which includes theories from theatre and performance studies, indigenous knowledge systems, comparative literary studies, rhetoric, and cultural studies.

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Date Created
2011

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Self-silencing in the early modern theater

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This dissertation considers why several characters on the Early Modern Stage choose to remain silent when speech seems warranted. By examining the circumstances and effects of self-silencing on both the character and his/her community, I argue that silencing is an

This dissertation considers why several characters on the Early Modern Stage choose to remain silent when speech seems warranted. By examining the circumstances and effects of self-silencing on both the character and his/her community, I argue that silencing is an exercise of power that simultaneously subjectifies the silent one and compels the community (textual or theatrical) to ethical self-examination. This argument engages primarily with social philosophers Pierre Bourdieu, Alain Badiou, and Emmanual Levinas, considering their sometimes contradictory ideas about the ontology and representation of the subject and the construction of community. Set alongside the Early Modern plays of William Shakespeare, Ben Jonson and Thomas Kyd, these theories reveal a rich functionality of self-silencing in the contexts of gender relations, aberrant sociality, and ethical crisis. This multi-faceted functionality creates a singular subject, establishes a space for the simultaneous existence of the subject and his/her community, offers an opportunity for empathetic mirroring and/or insight, and thereby leads to social unification. Silence is, in its effects, creative: it engenders empathy and ethical self- and social-reflection.

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Date Created
2011