PERFORMANCE WRITING -2nd Congress Performing Arts in Education, University of Patras, Archaelogical Museum of Patras, Funded by the University of Patras, Research Committee.

Performance_Writing_body_word_Polymenakos_Patras PW Patras test imageA panel dedicated to Performance Writing as practiced in Dartington College of Arts – March 2018

A unique combination of Performance Writing Academics and Practitioners share their take on Performance Writing and it’s applications in contemporary education. In the frame of 2nd Congress Performing Arts in Education, University of Patras, Archaelogical Museum of Patras, Funded by the University of Patras, Research Committee, for the 1st time in Greece.

On hearing about my method body/word and Performance Writing as practiced in DCA, Dr Maro Galani was intrigued by its educational merits and specifically for  her then current research in the frame of her MA in Creative Writing. She participated in my masterclass at the Kalamata Dance Festival; this reoriented her research and led to her inviting me to participate in the Congress’ Scientific Committee and chair a panel on PW in the context of the Performing Arts in Education, for the first time in Greece.  Thank you Dr Galani.

This panel was important not only for this was the 1st official presentation of Performance Writing as practiced in DCA and the body/word method in Greece, in an academic environment. This panel brought together brilliant theorists and practitioners of the field with presentations specifically designed for the thematic and geographical context of the Congress.

Dr John Hall, Professor of Performance Writing, Poet, offered in a video presentation, insights on the factors that ignited this radical approach to writing and teaching at University Level in the early 90’s. He offered some of the principles and facts that contextualise PW when it started and now as a field that pedagogy -Artitic Education and beyond-would benefit most of.

Jerome Fletcher, Associate Professor of Performance Writing & MFA co-ordinator, Falmouth University, Writer, Researcher, offered “Remarks on Performance Writing and Teaching”. Jerome placed the field and its educational practices in a context that not only responds to simply to a set of aesthetic and compositional principles but presupposes wider social contexts and their critical examination. PW furthermore welcomes the conditions that formulate the subjects of the reading and writing process, within their contemporary physical, digital and constructed environment. 

Jerome also offered a video of his PW creation “Reusement” to be available for the visitors in the Poster presentation area.

Dr Barbara Bridger, Writer, Director and Dramaturg was present in the Congress. She spoke about the investigation for a new language, by means of Writing and Performance, through her own creative experience and background as a teacher and Co-Director of the Writing Department in Dartington.

My keynote was about “Performance Writing as practiced in Dartington College of Arts and the body/word method: interdisciplinary approaches to writing as tools for research, creation and education. A starting point.». It begun with historical information on this radical approach to writing, as a multimodal approach interrogation of how writing relates to other creative fields and the body/word method emerging from it, with applications in education, research and creation. You can read more about it here

Dr Mark Leahy, writer, artist, teacher, shared a combination of theory and practice by means of an informative poster titled “Contextualising ‘his voice’: Queering Utterance in a Digital Material Interface”. Practice, otherness and the digital have always fed the field with priceless input.

Melanie Thompson, again through a poster presentation, offered examples of “Performance Writing Proposals on Transdisciplinary & Collaborative Workshops” responding to the research question “How can Performance Writing (PW) operate as a field for experimentation on and proposal of transdisciplinary and collaborative pedagogical tools?”

 All the above, except myself who in 2009 took the MA in Performance Writing, had been working in the field of Performance Writing in Dartington College of Arts, John and Jerome being among the people who initially formed the course. I will be forever grateful for their trust and very specific input, in response to my invitation on the occasion of the Congress, as well as their collaboration and discussions from 2009 until today.  

As there were practical restrictions, there was another component of these Performance Writing insights, presented the previous day as part of the panel, Performing Arts in Education. Persephone Krasidou, Art Therapist, Artist, Educator and myself, shared the outcomes of a practice as research process of creating a joint workshop, Art Therapy Meets Performance Writing.

 If the above sound interesting, please do get in touch. The minutes of the congress have been printed and the online version is much expected.  

Premier: 24 March 2018, 2nd Congress Performing Arts in Education, University of Patras, Archaelogical Museum of Patras, Funded by the University of Patras, Research Committee.