London Theatre Seminar, 17 November 2016 with Molly Flynn (RHUL)

Please join us at London Theatre Seminar on 17 November 2016, in the University of London Senate House (Room 104 Torrington Room). We are pleased to be welcoming Molly Flynn of Royal Holloway, University of London. Seminars start at 6.30 PM and close at 8.30, to reconvene in a local pub.

We hope to see you there!

Broderick, Louise, & Bryce

Evidentiary Hearing: The Case of Moscow’s Teatr.doc

Since the early 2000s, many of Russia’s most innovative theatre artists have increasingly taken to incorporating materials from real life events into their performance practice. As the Kremlin’s crackdown on freedom of expression continue to tighten, playwrights, performers and directors are using documentary theatre to create a singular space for civic engagement. This paper explores why twenty-first century Russia has proven an especially generative environment for the development of documentary theatre and illustrates how the form speaks to a number of core cultural anxieties in contemporary Russian culture. It draws on my own experience as a creator/performer of documentary theatre in Russia, the US, and the UK and integrates extensive interview material with the artists and critics at the heart of Moscow’s lively documentary theatre repertoire. By situating Russian documentary theatre’s remarkable growth within the socio-cultural setting of the Putin years (2000-), this paper demonstrates how the country’s documentary theatre artists play the space between that which is real and that which is fabricated in order to expose the fungible nature of history and ideology as it has developed in the twenty-first century Russian context.

Molly Flynn is a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant in the Department of Drama, Theatre and Dance at Royal Holloway University of London. She received her PhD in Slavonic Studies from Kings College, Cambridge in 2016. Her primary research traces the history and significance of documentary theatre in Russia and Eastern Europe and considers why the form has become an important venue for civic engagement throughout the former Soviet region. Molly is also a contributing member to the AHRC funded project For Love or Money? Collaboration Between Amateur and Professional Theatre, a study that explores the impact of crossovers between the spheres of professional and amateur theatre making in the UK.