Devising Performance: A Critical History (Theatre & by Deirdre Heddon

By Deirdre Heddon

The e-book charts the advance of collaboratively-created performances from the Nineteen Fifties to the current day. businesses mentioned contain the dwelling Theatre, Open Theatre, Australian appearing crew, humans convey, Teatro Campesino, Théâtre de Complicité, Legs at the Wall, compelled leisure and 3rd Angel. by contrast heritage of huge style, primary questions are posed: "What is devised theatre?"; "Why have theatre-makers selected to plan performances because the 1950s?" and "How has devised functionality replaced during the last fifty years?"

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Additional info for Devising Performance: A Critical History (Theatre & Performance Practices)

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As with many of the processes of devising, the subject matter that begins a group’s investigation does not always survive into the final performance. The Serpent began as a series of workshops exploring the life of Christ as a social anarchist. But the stories of the Old Testament lent themselves to the search for archetypal imagery more easily than did the individuated figure of Christ, and the moral themes of Genesis began to interest the company more. Using structured improvisation exercises drawn from Spolin, Stanislavski and those they invented themselves, they evolved images around the narrative of the myth.

The history we explore finds differences in devising across the diverse fields in which it occurs, and also examines what it is that links devising process and performance to the chronology of the cultural, political or social moment. INTRODUCTION 23 What is impossible to ‘recover’ is both the live performance and a definitive history of the making of a piece of devised or collaborative work. Although video documentation now gives some experience of a performance, the different medium renders it a different version from the live event.

The ideology that underpinned improvisation was linked to the emergence of devising, for the groups studied here, in two key ways. First, the use of improvisation presupposed that a performer had an inner creativity that had been repressed, socialised, censored or hidden. Hence, the rhetoric of many groups contained a nostalgic yearning for a childlike attitude and, more questionably, for ritual or ‘simpler’ forms of theatricality. Improvisation was the means by which this ‘return’ to the prelapsarian innocence of creativity could be achieved.

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