The Centre for Contemporary and Digital Performance

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Performance Research Seminar Series

Fall 2011

School of Arts - Brunel University - London

The public is invited to participate in this series of encounters, lectures, screenings, physical and new media workshops and discussions, focussed on new thinking in performance practices,new medi arts, technologies, physical and digital/scientific creativity, and cultural production.

For more information contact 01895 267 343 .........Admission free.......... Location: Cleveland Rd, Uxbridge, Middlesex, UB8 3PH

Research Seminar on Dance TECH TV LIVE


Welcome to this fall's research seminar series at the Centre for Contemporary and Digital Performance. This fall we will focus on how praxis and theory in performance and theatre shifts as they are informed, challenged and or altered by other disciplines, processes and or art forms.

Meredith Godley as Rochelle

Wednesday, Wednesday October 5, 2011

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo

Meredith Godley

(Dept. of Art, Curtin University, Perth, Australia)

"Performance Art and YouTube Vlogging"

Meredith Godley is a West Australian based performance artist. Having successfully completed her fine art degree with Honours, she is currently studying her Doctorate of Creative Art and teaching at Curtin University in Perth, Western Australia. Meredith has exhibited locally / nationally and has curated group exhibitions. Her performances are videoed and presented digitally and also performed as live multimedia art installations. Thematically her work has long blurred boundaries between pop culture and performance art. In commenting on the accessibility of performance art, she initially drew from reality TV to inform her performance style and presentation. Following on from this, her current project is positioned within the virtual video-logging (vlogging) community of YouTube. Here she examines notions of the multiple self and explores YouTube as a platform for contemporary performance art. She is currently in the UK to present a conference paper at 'Rewire: the fourth international conference on media art histories' (hosted by FACT, the Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) at John Moores University, Liverpool and to deliver an artist talk at the Centre for Performance Research at Aberystwyth University in Wales.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Jaime del Val

(Reverso // Madrid Spain)

"Microsexes/Microdances: Metahuman Technologies - Undoing anatomy in capitalism of affects"

Jaime del Val will be artist in residence at our Center from October 24-27. During his stay, DAP-Lab will feature him in a hands on workshop: Workshop on metahuman technologies: Tuesday, Oct. 25, 16:oo AA 101 // 18:30 Drama Studio (till 22:oo)


Jaime del Val (Madrid 1974) is a meta-media artist, metahumanist philosopher, composer and pianist, performer and painter, producer, environmental and post-queer activist, director of REVERSO( His projects and performances which develop in the convergence of interactive dance, electro-acoustics, video, virtual architecture, performance, urban interventions and the internet have been presented all over Europe, North and South America and Africa. His writings on critical theories of the body, art and technology, have been published in numerous print and online journals. In 2000 s/he edited REVERSO, the first academic journal of Queer Theory and lgttbi studies in Spanish. Since 2004 s/he coordinates various fronts of activism against urban speculation in Spain, for which in 2008 s/he was chosen by El Pais as one of the 100 Iberoamericas of the year, Between 2008 and 2010 s/he was the Spanish coordinator of the ETP project ( a european project concerned with the development of novel telecommunication concepts and systems in the forms of interactive telematic dance installations networked across 4 european cities. s/He coordinates the group Common Body in Medialab Prado in Madrid ( Through his activism group FreeBody ( and the Transfagdyke Assembly of the Spanish Revolution 2011 movement in Madrid s/he challenges bodily, affective and sexual norms: from intimacy and monogamy to the stigma against prostitution. s/He currently investigates on technologies for the production of illegible affects. s/He rejects species identity and binary gender identity, is neither human nor man nor woman, and is a vegetarian.

Admission: Free


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Caroline Bergvall

(Writer and cross-disciplinary artist, London)

"Languages, Writing, Acoustic Investment"

London-based writer and artist, of French-Norwegian nationality. Works across artforms, media and languages. Highly regarded for her spoken and sited textworks. Projects alternate between books, audio pieces, performances and language installations. Her work explores through various means and collaborations notions of language and performativity; audiovisual inscription, new literacies for writing, language politics and citizenry. Latest book: Meddle English: New and Selected Texts (Nightboat Books, 2011). Latest solo commission: Middling English (John Hansard Gallery) with catalogue. She has presented work at MOMA (NY), Tate Modern (London), MukHa (Antwerp), The Hammer (LA). Forthcoming group shows: Museu-Fundacion Tapies (Barcelona) and Platforma (London). Initiator of several nomadic discussion roundtables for writers, artists and scholars: Partly Writing (2002-2005) and Translated Acts (2007-2010). She was the Director of the influential course Performance Writing, Dartington College of Arts in its first years of operation (1995-2000); co-Chair MFA in Writing, Bard College (NY, 2004-2006). Awarded an AHRC Fellowship in the Creative and Performing Arts, Southampton University (2007-2010). Most recently: Writer-in-Residence, School of Visual Media, University of Copenhagen (Spring 2011).

Caroline Bergvall website


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Alyson Campbell

(Brunel University)

"From Bogeyman to Bison: a herd-like amnesia of HIV/AIDS in theatre?"

Queer theorists from across a broad range of disciplines argue that we are in a "normalizing" or "homonormative" period, in which marginalized subjectivities strive to align themselves with hegemonic norms. In terms of LGBTQ rights and representation, it can be argued that this has resulted in an increased visibility of "desirable" gays (monogamous - ideally civil-partnered, white, financially-independent, able-bodied) and the decreased visibility of "undesirable" gays (the sick, the poor, the non-white, the non gender-conforming). Focusing specifically on the effects of this hierarchy on the contemporary theatrical representation of gay HIV/AIDS subjectivities, this article looks at two performances, Reza Abdoh's Bogeyman (1991) and Lachlan Philpott's Bison (2009/10). The essay argues that HIV/AIDS performance is as urgently necessary today as in the early 1990s, and that a queer dramaturgy, unafraid to resist the lure of normativity or the 'gaystreaming' of LGBT representation, is a vital intervention strategy in contemporary (LGBT) theatre.

Alyson came to Brunel in September 2011, having previously lectured in Drama at Queen's University Belfast (2007-11) and in Theatre Studies at The University of Melbourne, Australia, (2005-6). She completed her practice-based PhD on Sarah Kane's "experiential theatre" at the University of Melbourne (2009). Alyson is a director, and has worked in a broad range of situations: from the four-stage Los Angeles Theatre Center, through Fringe, independent and community theatre, to making forum theatre with secondary students. Her work with Melbourne company Red Stitch Actors Theatre includes Sarah Kane's 4.48 Psychosis (2007) and the Australian premieres of Martin Crimp's Fewer Emergencies (2006) and Don DeLillo's The Day Room (2004). She has worked on the development of much new writing and directing as a director, mentor and dramaturg. In Melbourne, she developed new writing through her partnership with Sydney playwright Lachlan Philpott and their independent ensemble wreckedAllproductions. She has written about Philpott's dramaturgy in articles in Theatre Research International and Australasian Drama Studies. Alyson has recently collaborated with Lachlan on his play 'Bison,' which was performed at Queen's University for the OUTburst Queer Arts Festival (2009) and subsequently at the Oval House Theatre, London (2010). Alyson is co-convenor of the new Queer Futures Working Group for the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR) and a member of the Directing and Dramaturgy Working Group for the Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA). She was founder and Director of the Queer at Queen?s research and performance programme which ran annually as part of the OUTburst Queer Arts Festival in Belfast, 2008-10. She regularly gives papers at international and national conferences.



Winter 2012


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Ron Athey

(performance artist)

"Performing Live Sex in a Post-AIDS Body: Self Obliterations 1/2/& 3"

Ron Athey is an American performance artist associated with body art and with extreme performance art. He has performed in the U.S. and internationally (especially in the UK and Europe). Athey's work explores challenging subjects like the relationships between desire, sexuality, and traumatic experience. Many of his works include aspects of S&M in order to confront pre-conceived ideas about the body in relation to masculinity and religious iconography. Athey's first performance was in 1981: 'Premature Ejaculation,' a collaboration with Christian Death's Rozz Williams. There were performances at the legendary Club Fuck!, an integral part of the early 80?s queer scene in L.A. In the 1990s Athey's 'torture trilogy' addressed move esoteric and emotional responses to the AIDS pandemic, and stirred controversies around the risk of blood (in the U.S.) while at the same time having to address the Operation Spanner politics of the UK, wherein a person is not allowed to release the law on their own body. Since the early 90s his work has been commissioned and shown at the ICA London; Kampnagel, Hamburg; CCA, Glasgow, his company, solo and visual art works have been presented at MOCA Los Angeles, MADRE Museum Naples, Kanonhallen Copenhagen, Xteresa Mexico City, Festival Atlantico Lisbon, Danau Festival Krems Austria, Eurokaz Zagreb, Gallerija Kapelica Ljubljana, and many more. Currently Athey is working on the first book of his live art work commemorating 30 years of performing.


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Nicolas Salazar

(performance artist and mathematician, University of Surrey)

"Mathematextual Performance"

Salazar-Sutil is a Chilean cultural theorist based in London. He has published widely on the interface between symbolic languages (mathematics and computer languages), and performance. He is also a performance and theatre practitioner, and he has developed a number of cross-artistic installations and performances with his company Configur8. He obtained a PhD from the Centre for Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths College, and an MA-Res in Theatre and Drama from Royal Holloway University of London.

His lecture-workshop on 'Square Embodiments' is divided into three sections: a) critical analysis b) video visualisations/exemplifications and c) practice. In the first part of this workshop he will analyse the use of the geometric object of the Square in performance practice, and its rendition into various numerical objects (Square numbers). A corporeal semiotic approach (the semiotic square) is used to compare this non-technological formalisation of the body with technologically mediated forms of bodily formalisation, specifically in relation to the role squares have in the construction of computerised forms of embodiment. The workshop then explores examples of Square Choreography in American Dance (American folk tradition, Balanchine, Bruce Nauman's Dance or Exercise on the Perimeter of a Square; Walking in an Exaggerated Manner round the Perimeter of a Square). The workshop concludes with a practice-based rehearsal of the opening sections of one/ two/three (depending on number of participants) mathematexts that make use of the square: Klein Group Ritual Dance by Drid Williams; Quad, by Samuel Beckett and Choreographing Category Theory 4, by Brian Rotman.


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Broderick D.V. Chow

(Brunel University)

"Work and Shoot: a question of embodied politics, and wrestling"

Since Roland Barthes' (1957) famous analysis of the "world of wrestling", scholarly work on the field of professional wrestling has tended to focus on its visual semiotics, its relation to the national "myths" of America, or its constructions of masculinity and femininity. My project, part of a larger investigation into the "body at work", turns its attention to the physical practices of wrestling themselves by isolating one aspect of the form, "chain wrestling", and exploring this practice in the studio as part of a broader dance and movement vocabulary. This paper will contextualise and theorise the in-progress findings of my practice-based enquiry, attending to the ethical and political implications of improvisatory movement involving close physical contact. Professional wrestling distinguishes between two types of fighting: "work" and "shoot." Worked fights emerged in the early 20th century as promoters discovered they were able to make more money by determining the outcome of matches in advance and presenting ever more spectacular moves. Within a series of accepted boundaries, wrestling "work" sells a series of moves as real. However, deviation from the work, or "shoot", is always a possibility between wrestlers, and with it the potential of real violence or injury. "Work" might therefore be read in terms of a duty of care to the other, the need to protect ones partner from violence. I will consider "work" and "shoot" in relation to Michel Foucault's (1991) analysis of disciplinary power in which the body is power's "object and target", which provisionally allows us to read work between bodies as a practice of freedom. I call this embodied politics an "ethics of rowdy play."

Dr Broderick D.V. Chow is a lecturer and researcher in Theatre in the School of Arts at Brunel University with interests in popular performance in relation to political change and mobilisation, and performance as ideological critique. His PhD thesis, "How to do things with jokes: relocating the political dimension of performance comedy" was the first PhD to be awarded by the Central School of Speech & Drama, University of London. His practice includes solo performance, public intervention, installation and stand-up comedy, with five years on the UK comedy circuit. He has written about parkour and the architecture of global finance, performance-based protest, musical theatre, and professional wrestling as a working-class populist form. He is currently working on a new performance called Work Songs, a musical/physical comedy about the mindless tedium and unceasing alienation of office work.


In collaboration with



Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Performance Research Seminar

GB048 Drama Studio 16:oo-17:30 pm

Ruth Way & Russell Frampton

"Blind Torrent: An exploration of unfolding textualities, sensorial anthropology and imagined archaeology"

Still from "Blind Torrent" (c) Ruth Way and Russell Frampton


This presentation includesthe Screening of Blind Torrent (Experimental Dance Theatre / Arts film) Directed and Produced by Ruth Way, dance artist and choreographer, and Russell Frampton, film maker and visual artist (DVD 10 - 12 minutes ).

The presentation following this screening will offer a detailed analysis of the work and explore how filmic ritual landscapes seek to unearth connections between notions of site, artifact, temporality and embodied choreographic response.

Ruth Way is Associate Professor and Head of Theatre and Performance, she is Programme Leader for BA Dance Theatre and MRes Dance at the University of Plymouth. Ruth has had an extensive career as professional dancer and choreographer performing with Earthfall Dance and Lusty Juventus Physical Theatre and has presented her practice as research though performative papers, articles and performances internationally. With Russell Frampton she is co-director of Enclave Productions and their most recent film Utah Sunshine has been screened in France, Poland, USA and Brazil. Current research is focused on exploring connections between somatic movement practice and the sentient body in her performance and film practice. Russell Frampton is a painter and film maker , he is an Associate Lecturer in Theatre and Performance , University of Plymouth, teaching dance on screen and dance and technology. Russell has devised both film and digital scenography for Lusty Juventus Physical Theatre Company and is an established artist who exhibites his work internationally. In 2004 he formed Enclave Productions with choreographer and dancer Ruth Way to extend his work into the area of interdisciplinary and collaborative film practice.



Performance Research Seminar Coordinator: Johannes Birringer

All Research Seminars are co-produced with dance tech live TV and streamed online as well as archived.


Research Seminar on Dance TECH TV LIVE


The Centre broadcasts selected Performance Research Seminars live from the Brunel Drama Studio - making them available to anyone in the world interested in the subject. Johannes Birringer and Marlon Barrios Solano are co-producing the talks and discussions as live webcasts webcast live on dance tech net TV . The partnership between the Centre and dance-techTV, is an experiment in collaborative video broadcasting (the channel is dedicated to interdisciplinary explorations of the performance of movement. The channel allows worldwide 24/7 linear broadcasting of selected programs, LIVE streaming and Video On-demand). This channel is powered by, and is enveloped within, a donation based platform




Artaud Performance Centre

30 March - 1 April, 2012

Artaud Forum II

Konnecting Gestures

International Conference-Workshop on Performance and Sound Technologies


(co-organized by the Theatre & Music Departments)

details will be announced in the fall

* * *


June 18-19, 2012

Researching the Arts Conference

Artaud Performance Centre


details about this annual post-graduate research conference, call for submissions, and projected program and performances will be announced in December 2011



(c) 2011-12 The Centre for Contemporary and Digital Performance, Johannes Birringer (acting director)