• Returning Pretext

      Owens, Allan; Yamani, H.; University of Bethlehem (2017-01-26)
      In the ‘Right to Return Pre-text’ we travel back in time to the year 1967 when Israel opened the border for the first time in 20 years to Palestinians who fled in 1948. Husband and wife Said and Sofia are arguing in their living room in Ramallah, Palestine about whether or not they should take this chance to visit the house for which they still have the key, but which Israelis would now surely be living in. Finally on a sweltering hot June day they set out in their old grey Fiat to make the journey to Haifa to face the un-faceable. Based on Ghassan Kanafani’s (1936-1972) novella ‘Returning to Haifa’ this pre-text explores the consequences of political and military occupation from a deeply human perspective. A series of questions are posed through three scenes that take participants from the known in to profoundly de-stabilising unknown territories.
    • My Old Home Pretext: Interactive Performance

      Owens, Allan; Green, Naomi; Ohashi, Yosuke; Katayanagi Instiute & Taichi Kikaku Theatre Company Tokyo (Interactive Performance, 2016-04-28)
      The concept of return is at the heart of ‘My Old Home Pre-text’, but in a very different political context, that of China in the 1920’s. A man whose name we never know, braves the freezing cold to make the journey by boat from Peking (now Beijing) with a clear purpose in mind, to sell the old home he last saw twenty years ago and to bring his mother and niece back to the big city with him. He travels resolutely, but is unprepared for the wave of emotions that wash over him as he meets his old friend and questions the lives they are living. Lu Xun (1881-1936) wrote the story on which this pretext was based in 1921 when 2000 years of imperial rule had just ended. Revolts and uprisings had taken place, modernization had begun, but society had not changed and he criticizes this. Through a series of detailed frames participants engage with the mans’ search for hope.
    • It’s All in Proportion: Tracing the Evolution of the Time-Aggregate in Roberto Gerhard’s Music

      Sproston, Darren; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016-12-01)
      This chapter investigates a very specific innovation in Roberto Gerhard’s compositional practice and traces its possible origins. The technique in question is the “time-aggregate” or use of proportions, directly derived from the tone row, as a structural device. This inquiry begins Roberto Gerhard’s article “Functions of the Series in Twelve-Note Composition” and then works in reverse chronological order through his writings and compositions and through the musings of other scholars finally dwelling on three works which are believed to be Gerhard’s earliest experiments in the use of the method: the Three Impromptus (1950), Capriccio for Solo Flute (1949), and the Sonata for Viola (Cello) and Piano (1948/1956).
    • Metamorphosing: The Construction and Deconstruction
 of Roberto Gerhard’s Symphony No. 2

      Sproston, Darren; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016-12-01)
      There are three structural methods, which can be summarised from Gerhard’s paper “Developments in twelve-tone technique”, that employ the series (or its derivative time-set): to fix the length of the rhythmic articulation of individual pitches; to control the ordering of the twelve transpositions of a series so each is presented once before a transposition is repeated; finally, to determine the duration of these transpositions. The series, therefore, has the ability to govern microcosmic and macrocosmic parameters of a composition. All three of these can be found in Roberto Gerhard’s Second Symphony (1957-59). On revising the Symphony in 1967-68 to create Metamorphoses he reworks the material of the original ‘the changes - from slight to complete - take place on all levels: in the writing, in the orchestration, in the ordering, in the disordering (...)’ In the process of recomposing Gerhard, at times, seems to deliberately disregard the methodology he imposed on himself in the earlier version. The aim of this chapter is to investigate how much he ignores this on revising the Symphony; how the changes he made impact on the coherence of the newer version; finally to make some suggestions as to why he felt the structures could be broken.
    • ‘Proxemic Interaction in Popular Music Recordings’

      Dockwray, Ruth; University of Chester (Routledge, 2017-01-01)
      This paper discusses sonic spatialization and the notion of proxemics in recorded tracks. Spatialization or rather the spatial characteristics and positioning of sounds within a track, can directly influence the way a listener can formulate their own interpretation. Through the analysis of proxemic zones within the context of the ‘sound-box’, their impact in terms of interpersonal distance and listener engagement will be discussed along with potential meanings.
    • John Bull’s Other Ireland: Manchester-Irish Identities and a Generation of Performance

      Harrop, Peter; O'Sullivan, Brendan M. (University of Chester, 2017-05)
      This thesis provides an auto-ethnographically informed ‘making strange’ of the mise-en-scène of Irish working class domesticity in the North West of England as it was lived during the 1960s, 1970s and into the 1980s. The liminality of being a child of migrant parents is considered and the interstices of experience and identity in and of England and Ireland, Englishness and Irishness are explored. The first chapter of the thesis draws the reader into the initial frame of reference, the personal childhood ethnography that inspired this wider study, and considers Bhabha’s ‘shadow of the nation’ falling ‘on the condition of exile’ as one context for the development of individual identities. The second chapter examines the ways in which a performance studies approach provides a useful method for interrogating matters of place, personhood and citizenship whilst the third chapter introduces performance theory as a mechanism for exploring the ways in which quotidian and cultural performance have been harnessed as tools of negotiation. These are sometimes resistant, sometimes affirmative and sometimes celebratory acts in the construction of new identities. Ongoing performances reveal the embodied histories of individual performers, shaped in part by culture and memory, masking and unmasking to both construct and reveal layered identities. The fourth chapter, provides the most obvious example of traditional fieldwork, and draws on interview extracts to provide key insights into aspects of the diasporic context, identifying and analyzing the many rehearsal and performance opportunities provided by growing up in Irish households in England, where identities were initially formed, informed, and performed. Bridging the distinction between autoethnography, performance ethnography and the ethnography of performance, this chapter engages in discussion with a range of contributors defamiliarising the domestic mise-en-scène whilst simultaneously recognizing a commonality of experience. These interviews are themselves a celebration of Irish identity performance and form an important bridge between the theoretical framework explored in the opening chapters and the subsequent case studies. The final section of the thesis searches out a mirroring of these processes in the construction of theatrical and mediatised performance – providing opportunities to both utilize and observe performance ethnography and the ethnography of performance. It is suggested that Terry Christian provides an affirmative yet angry celebration in a complex performed response to a complex mise-en-scène. A new reading of Steve Coogan’s work then suggests three modes of performance: first, Coogan the outsider satirises British mores; second, Coogan plays sophisticated games of revealing and masking multiple versions of self; third, a searching and ultimately serious engagement with his engagement with Ireland. The application of a performance theory perspective, in the context of this fraction of the Irish diaspora, reveals a playful and generous spirited approach to complex and serious matters of identity and place in the world – to the ways in which lives are led and meanings made through and for the generation of performance.
    • Experimental Sound Mixing for “The Well”, a Short Film Made for Tablets

      Dockwray, Ruth; Collins, Karen; University of Chester; University of Waterloo (MIT Press, 2017-06-16)
      This article presents an overview of the use of binaural recording and experimental headphone mixing for a short film. Drawing loosely on theories of proxemics, the article illustrates how sound mixing can be used to create a unique subjective perspective. In particular, the authors sought to experiment with and to use the peculiarities of stereo headphone mixing and binaural sound to reinforce visual elements of a film designed for horizontal viewing on tablets.
    • From dance cultures to dance ecology: a study of developing connections across dance organisations in Edinburgh and North West England, 2000 to 2016

      Harrop, Peter; Pattie, David; Jamieson, Evelyn (University of Chester, 2016-12-15)
      The first part of this thesis provides an autobiographical reflection and three contextualising histories to illustrate the increasing codification of late twentieth century UK contemporary dance into discrete cultures. These are professional contemporary dance and professional performance, dance participation and communitarian intervention, and dance as subject for study and training. The central section of the thesis examines post-millennial reports and papers by which government, executives and public sector arts organisations in both England and Scotland have sought to construct and steer dance policy toward greater collaborative connections on financial and ideological grounds. This is contrasted with a theoretical consideration of collaboration drawing on a range of academic approaches to consider the realities and ideals of creative and artistic collaboration and organisational collaboration. Finally, the thesis draws together these historical, theoretical and policy driven considerationsin a series of six case studies to establish the network of connections. Two professional contemporary artists and companies, two community dance organisations and two education departments (one of each from Edinburgh, Scotland and one of each from the North West of England) are scrutinised to assess the challenges, tensions and opportunities in reconciling policy driven collaboration with artistic integrity.
    • The experience and perception of duration in three contemporary performances

      Waite, Julian; Harrop, Peter; Layton, James R. (University of Chester, 2016-04)
      I argue in this thesis that qualitative duration (viewed in opposition to the construct of quantitative clock-time) can be experienced through performance encounters that challenge smooth consumption. In a socially accelerated culture, where to do more in less time is the measure of a productive life, one’s connection with the ‘real’ time of duration is diminished. To challenge this premise, I have used an autoethnographic approach to explore an experience of duration conceived via the work of French philosopher Henri Bergson, who posits that “pure duration [is that which] excludes all idea of juxtaposition, reciprocal externality, and extension” (Bergson, 1903/1999, p. 26). In other words, Bergson asserts that duration defies quantitative measurement. I argue that the Bergsonian experience of duration offers a pause from social acceleration and effects a transformation for the spectator in the form of peak-experience, flow, and communitas.
    • Music in the spaces of the 21st century

      Pattie, David; Sproston, Darren; Darlington, Bruce (University of Chester, 2016-01-31)
      Exploration of the changes modern digital technology has had on the act of engaging with music in the early 21st century.
    • Sevenfold Fugue for Solo Organ

      Sproston, Darren; University of Chester (Darren Sproston, 2015-03-01)
      Commissioned by the University of Chester for its 175th Founders’ Day Service. First performed at Chester Cathedral, March 2015 by Graham Eccles.
    • Chorale Prelude: Lord for the Years for Solo Organ

      Sproston, Darren; University of Chester (Darren Sproston, 2015-03-01)
      Commissioned by the University of Chester for its 175th Founders’ Day Service. First performed at Chester Cathedral, March 2015 by Graham Eccles.
    • Culture, Politics and Drama Education: The Creative Agenda 1997-2015

      Piasecka, Shelley; University of Chester (National Drama Publications, 2016-05-07)
      In the years following New Labour’s election victory (1997) the creative agenda was a visible concern for schools and teachers. A number of influential documents and policy documents were launched to promote creativity in schools. New funding opportunities had been made available to support teachers and classroom learning, most notably the Arts Council initiative Creative Partnerships (2002). Buckingham and Jones (2001) describe the period as the “Cultural Turn” towards the creative and cultural industries. Paradoxically, the creative agenda emerged at a time when teachers experienced unprecedented levels of control over, and public scrutiny of, their everyday working lives; it was a period of time dominated by a ‘bureaucratisation” of education. For Stronach et al. (2002) it was a rise of a performativity discourse in response to the audit culture. Post 2010, the introduction of school performance measures, such as the compulsory English Baccalaureate (2015), offers another kind of performativity discourse, but from a perspective other than creativity. The long-term outlook for creative subjects appears bleak, particularly for dance and drama. This article examines the period 1997-2015 with reference to Neelands and Choe’s (2010) assertion that creativity is a cultural and political idea.
    • Site, Sight, Cite: (Re)Making Locational Identity through Walking and Performance

      Layton, James R.; Molony, Richard; University of Chester (2015-04-16)
      In August 2014, James Layton, Richard Molony and Julian Waite (University of Chester) conceived and presented a participatory performance titled (V)-Is-it Chester?, in which spectators were invited on a walking tour of Chester city centre, reimagining its history and present day reality. Currently, Layton and Molony are using the seeds of this performance to curate a community project that employs participatory performance and walking art practice as a means of engaging a range of Chester residents in the arts. The participants will be invited to make connections between their own identities and familiar locations, thus foregrounding autobiographical and non-rational associations (Smith, 2010). Through the (re)exploration of locational identities, Site, Sight, Cite aims to raise awareness of and engagement in the arts in Chester as the city's new arts centre moves towards completion in 2016. Site, Sight, Cite aims to work with participants in creating their own personal histories of the city. In doing so, the project draws upon notions of 'sited community' (Kwon 2004); performative walking (Smith, 2010; 2014; Heddon, 2012; Mock, 2009), mythogeography (Wrights & Sites, 2006; 2010), and relational aesthetics (Bourriaud, 2002). In this paper, the authors offer a prognosis for the future of the arts in Chester and how, through engaging the city's denizens in walking art practice, locational identity can be (re)examined and (re)evaluated.
    • Borders of knowledge: A reflection on a collaborative international drama project

      Layton, James R.; Loudon, Jane; University of Chester (2014-10-24)
      Iris Marion Young (1990) believes that the ideal of community “seeks to resist the individualism and alienation that is pervasive in late capitalist societies by bringing people together”. Illustrated by an ongoing collaborative drama project between the UK and Romania, this paper seeks to explore the way in which access to knowledge associated with a late capitalist UK and those of the emerging capitalism of Romania informs creative partnerships. Using a case study of 2014 field research in Romania involving UK Drama & Theatre Studies undergraduates, this paper offers a multi-voiced reflection on how we learn from other communities and build sustainable and balanced relationships in an ever-expanding European community.
    • Collaborative Practice: some thoughts

      Jamieson, Evelyn (The Higher Education Academcy: Palatine, Dance, Drama and Music, 2011)
      A snapshot paper concerning values, approaches and modes of practice in higher education performing arts. This paper is contained in the 2011 report, Collaborative Arts Practices in HE: Mapping and Developing Pedgagogical Models by Christophe Alix, Elizabeth Dobson, Robert Wilsmore.
    • Turning to Learning: Organising Reflection and Creating Space for Reflexive Practices via Arts Based Initiatives

      Passila, A.; Owens, Allan; Sproedt, Henrik; University of Lapeenranta, University of Chester (2015-07-02)
      The purpose of this study is concerned with ‘inclusive growth’ (Europe2020) in the sense of having a clear agenda to develop new skills and jobs as well as new skills for new jobs. We draw on research into conceptualisations of new leadership and management such as Eraut, M. (2000) Non-formal learning and tacit knowledge in professional work. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 70, pp. 113–136; Raelin, J. (2004) Don't bother putting leadership into people. Academy of Management Perspectives August 1, vol. 18 no. 3 pp.131-135; Raelin, J. (2007) Academy of Management Perspectives December 1, 2007 vol. 6 no. 4 pp. 495-519. Our contribution is to discuss innovation potential through the idea of creating a broader participatory orientation where employees, managers, stakeholders, customers/end users and scholar’s needs, expertise and views can be utilized to develop new practices and ways of organizing reflection (Vince 2002; Pässilä & Vince, forthcoming; Vince & Reynolds 2009) and creating space for reflexive practices (Antonacopoulou 2004; Cotter 2014; Pässilä et. al 2013).
    • Critical Reflection and the arts as third spaces

      Lehikoinen, Kai; Passila, A.; Owens, Allan; University of Arts Helsinki, Lapeenranta University of Technology, university of Chester (2015-04-08)
      The paper discusses critical reflection in the context of the arts as Third Space (TS). It scrutinises TS as an artistically co-created conceptual, physical and egalitarian site for transdisciplinary dialogue and informal learning and also a means to advance the democracy of learning – especially critical reflection. The focus is on theatre-pedagogic ways to set up participatory performative learning arrangements as TS. The analysis addresses examples drawn from an arts-based learning practice called Learning Jam (LJ) that was organized in Copenhagen Business School in August 2014. In the transdisciplinary event, approximately forty artists, researchers, art-educators, managers and arts-based consultants used an artistic inquiry process to explore the topic of transformation. Organised as a jam in the sense of jazz music, the LJ encouraged the participants to improvise collectively in order to move beyond the known and co-create new knowledge through practice in collaboration between practitioners and academics
    • In the Thick of It, Proximities of Belonging in Performance Research

      Piasecka, Shelley; University of Chester (National Drama Publications, 2014-04)
      Themes of belonging: to a group, identity, culture and place have dominated education and performance research in recent years. For the social sciences, the educational significance of belonging tends to surface within ethnicity and race (see Demie, 2005; Hassan, 2009; Tomlinson, 1998), gender and sexuality (see Cole, 2006) and self-esteem and citizenship education (see Ma, 2003; Halliday, 1999; Piper and Garratt, 2004). In these contexts, questions of belonging are typically premised upon ideas of inclusion and exclusion, notions of Otherness and constructs of personal and social identity. For the purposes of this paper, though, I approach belonging from the perspective of the dramatic inquiry and storytelling. To introduce the theme, I refer to proximities of belonging, as exemplified by Conquergood (2004) and for dramatic practice, Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed. By way of illustration, I consider two projects undertaken as part my PhD: Heroes and Villains: a performance project with junior school children from a junior school in Stoke-on-Trent and Robin and the Pirate Letters: an early readers initiative for infant children in Cheshire East.
    • Echo of dreams

      Owens, Allan; Green, Naomi; University of Chester, NEC Katayanagi Institute (2015-04)
      The Echo of Dreams Pre-text allows for consideration of sudden changes in life, the unpredictable , unforeseen and unknowable to create a space for the exchange of such understandings and to allow for a celebration of the human spirit in the face of loss