This special issue of Performance Matters (9.1) asks: what is the performative force of practice-based research (PBR)? What exactly is produced when universal design principles are explored through music, when intergenerational trauma is examined through dance, or when performance art is used to probe the effects of climate change? Whether it is termed practice-based or practice-led research, practice-as-research, research-creation, or simply artistic research, the underlying proposition of the various methodologies we here call PBR is that creative practices may be used to seek out knowledge while also challenging the epistemological assumptions that produce the concept “research.” Creative practices such as music, dance, theatre, performance and visual art, creative media and writing are situated through PBR as both artistic processes/products and as the ground for (and critique of conventional understandings of) experimentation, analysis, and discovery. Although scholars and artists have worked to define PBR, articulate its pedagogies, design and defend graduate programs, and outline its philosophies, PBR remains poorly understood and unevenly supported in the academy. How does PBR productively articulate with other processual and collaborative methodologies? Who has agency within PBR and what constraints does it operate under? How can PBR methodologies help us to reimagine and reinvigorate scholarly and artistic enquiry?Read more about Call for Participation: Performance Matters 9.1: Performing Practice-Based Research
The editorial team at Performance Matters congratulates Jade Power-Sotomayor, who was recently awarded the American Society for Theatre Research's 2021 Sally Banes Publication Prize for her essay "Corporeal Sounding: Listening to Bomba Dance, Listening to puertorriqueñxs," published in the most recent Sound Acts, Vol. 1 special issue of Performance Matters 6.2 (2020), edited by Patricia Herrera, Caitlin Marshall, and Marci R. McMahon.Read more about Congratulations to Performance Matters author Jade Power-Sotomayor!
What does a performance studies syllabus instantiate or call into being in the classroom? As an interdiscipline, performance studies has been incorporated as an academic field while still remaining sensationally unsettled in its interventions, methods, and objects of analysis. As such, performance studies syllabi may function as performance scores, performative texts, archives of pedagogical practice, and finally, as the material of our performance as teachers. Indeed, the classroom, for many of us, is our most prolific and durational performance site. These iterative classroom performances rely on scripts as well as improvisational practices, with new forms and constellations emerging from the tried and true. The classroom is then a black box: a space for the staging of collective process, of dialogical exchange, and of inquiry itself as a performance form. It is also a black box in another sense: the classroom walls obscure its inner workings, rendering the performance of pedagogy strikingly difficult to represent. How do we document these performances and make them accessible in some way to those who weren’t there?Read more about CFP: The Syllabus is the Thing: Materialities of the Performance Studies Classroom