LTS Postgraduate Panel: Jessica Worden (Brunel) and Yaron Shyldkrot (Surrey), 11 May 2017

Please join us for the final London Theatre Seminar of the academic year on Thursday, 11 May 2017 in the University of London Senate House (Room 104 Torrington Room). This is a postgraduate panel featuring Jessica Worden (Brunel) and Yaron Shyldkrot (Surrey) It starts at 6.30 PM and will close at 8.30, to reconvene in a local pub.


Jessica Worden, Brunel University London

Writing Mutability: Written Scores for Performance

Mutability indicates a tendency towards change – it describes an attribute rarely associated with writing. Rather than focussing on the practical implementation of writing to document and fix the orality of language, my research explores the transformative and transient properties of written scores in performance writing practice. Looking to mutability as a characteristic of live permutations of writing, written scores both dissipate into and materialise as live iterations of writing. These permutations of performance highlight the agency of the performer to interpret the written score according to their individual subjectivities and environments. In this sense written scores generate live performance through mutability, allowing writing to shape and be shaped by performance. This approach to generating performance consequently undermines hierarchies of authorship and generates space for muted voices to come to the fore. Rather than presenting about written scores, I will perform from an excerpt of a written score, Echo/plasm, that I have developed for use in durational performance work.
Jessica Worden is completing a PhD at Brunel University College, where she has also worked as a visiting lecturer (2014-2015). She is a recent recipient of the Vice-Chancellor’s Travel Prize, 2017. Her practice-based research focuses on performances of breathlessness, written scores and writing as performance. She regularly performs in the UK and abroad. Recent peer-reviewed publications include a book chapter in in Syncope in Performing and Visual Arts (2016) and ‘Bonneville Salt Flats: This Place’ in The Journal of Writing and Creative Practice 8.1. Commissioned writing includes publications such as EROS, Salt and Lyra and for the ACE-funded performance platform ]performancespace[.

Yaron Shyldkrot, University of Surrey

Set the tone: On the Composition of Atmospheres

Can we think of theatre without atmosphere? Atmospheres have been an emerging subject of exploration – mostly in philosophy, architecture, urban planning and cultural geography. Yet, when it comes to theatre and performance, while being very prominent in everyday speech and used as a way to describe various experiences, atmospheres remain relatively unexplored. In the theatre, we are constantly immersed within, and are part of, an atmosphere. From the entrance and the foyer, through the auditorium with its houselights, to the stage, scenography and the performance itself. All of these elements colour, shape and contribute to the emergence of different ambiances and tones. Atmospheres are everywhere, but what are they, exactly? And what constitutes an atmosphere? In this presentation, I explore the composition of atmosphere in conditions of obstructed visuality. In response to the recent proliferation of studies regarding atmospheric encounters, I seek to bring forward both a critical and practical approach to atmosphere. I will start by asking what atmospheres are, and how an understanding of atmosphere might inform artistic practice. Then, I will focus on the process of atmosphere production and consider what kind of atmospheres might emerge when we cannot see clearly. As a practitioner-researcher making work in conditions of challenged visuality (using darkness and haze), I aim to show first how atmosphere can be used as a dramaturgical and scenographic tool; and second, how artistic practice might illuminate the cloudy notion of atmosphere.

Yaron Shyldkrot is a practitioner-researcher undergoing a Practice-as-Research PhD at the University of Surrey, exploring the composition of uncertainty and performance in the dark. Yaron currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA). As a performance maker, he works as a director and lighting designer and co-founded Fye and Foul, a theatre company exploring unique sonic experiences, darkness and extremes.