What role does theatre play in times of social crisis, periods of longterm political pressure (cultural wars or revolutions), or moments of socio-political deadlock? What educational roles are - or could - be filled by today’s theatre schools? Is their aim to train students in apolitical artistic craftsmanship, or should they also take social or political positions? Is there space in theatre academies for politics or not? And how is the nature of arts education subsequently reflected in activities of theatre school graduates? How is the role of theatre changing during the pandemic and due to the massive development of digital communication?
Laura Cull Ó Maoilearca / NL - Professor and Head of DAS Graduate School at the Academy of Theatre and Dance, Amsterdam University of the Arts in the Netherlands
Agata Adamiecka-Site / PL - Senior Lecturer and Ombudsman at the National Academy of Dramatic Art in Warsaw; theatre researcher, critic and publisher
László Upor / HU, Dramaturg, literary translator, essayist and Rector of University of Theatre and Film Arts in Budapest
Martin Bernátek / CZ, Assistant Professor, Area Head of Theatre Studies and Vice-Chair at the Department of Theatre and Film Studies, Palacký University Olomouc
Alice Koubová / CZ, Researcher at the Institute of Philosophy at the Czech Academy of Sciences.
The Show Must Go ON/OFF-Line is the title of a cycle of international online discussions with guests from the field of performing arts in the Czech Republic and abroad. Individual episodes are united by the common theme of sustainability and the performing arts, which moderators Martina Pecková Černá, Ondřej Škrabal, Alice Koubová, Katarína Figula, Jiří Šimek and their guests, drawn from the ranks of theatre and dance artists, curators, cultural managers and theorists, will examine from many points of view. Among these are the field’s sensitivity and responsiveness to the state of the environment and discussions around our potential to ensure that the quality of life we enjoy today is preserved for future generations. While it might appear that the critical need for social change under discussion in the fields of ecology, economics, politics and culture has been overshadowed in recent months by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, the performing arts sector has faced increasing concerns about the sustainability of the field itself, particularly in relation to the chaos around different rules for social distancing, the deteriorating economic situation and unpredictable audience behaviour. The rapid adaptation of theatre and dance works for the virtual environment has emerged as a defensive reaction. Does this hybrid existence in real and virtual space amount to a blind alley for a field based on contact with audiences, or does it open up new worlds and new possibilities? Will spectators stay at home forever? How are artists, cultural event organisers, public support providers and educational arts institutions responding to this crisis? What helps them to orientate themselves, what do they believe in and where are they headed? How are they communicating? In dialogue with our guests, we will try to map the performing arts’ emerging strategies and first responses to this global paradigm shift.
This online webinar series is organised by ATI’s International Cooperation Department as part of its Promotion of Czech Performing Arts Abroad program and in cooperation with the European projects Create to Connect -> Create to Impact and PACE.V4. The content of the series is linked to the theme of this year’s Theatre Night in the Czech Republic: sustainABILITY. The webinars will be held on the Zoom platform and take place in English only. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask guests questions during the meetings and the recordings will be made available on ATI’s YouTube channel.
Webinars will take place on the ZOOM platform; it is not necessary to download the application in advance.
After filling out the registration form, you will receive an email with a link to access the webinar.
If possible, please register 15 minutes before the start of the event to allow time to complete the registration process.
Webinars will be held in English.
Laura Cull Ó Maoilearca is Professor and Head of DAS Graduate School at the Academy of Theatre and Dance, Amsterdam University of the Arts in the Netherlands. She also holds a fractional position as Reader in Theatre and Performance and Director of the Centre for Performance Philosophy at the University of Surrey, UK. She is currently an AHRC Leadership Fellow for the project Performance Philosophy & Animals: Towards a Radical Equality (2019-2022). Her books include: The Routledge Companion to Performance Philosophy (Routledge, 2020) and Encounters in Performance Philosophy (Palgrave, 2014), both co-edited with Alice Lagaay; Theatres of Immanence: Deleuze and the Ethics of Performance (Palgrave, 2012); Manifesto Now! Instructions for Performance, Philosophy, Politics (Intellect, 2013), co-edited with Will Daddario; and Deleuze and Performance (Edinburgh, 2009). She is a founding core convener of the international research network Performance Philosophy, joint series editor of the Performance Philosophy book series with Rowman & Littlefield, and an editor of the Performance Philosophy journal.
Agata Adamiecka-Sitek is a senior lecturer and ombudsman at the National Academy of Dramatic Art in Warsaw, as well as a theatre researcher, critic and publisher. Her interests include gender, corporeality, politics and arts policy. She is the author of the book Teatr i tekst. Inscenizacja w teatrze postmodernistycznym (Theatre and Text. Mise-en-scène in a Postmodern Theatre, 2006) and co-editor of the first edition of Jerzy Grotowski’s Collected Texts (2009). She is a member of the editorial board of the Polish Theatre Journal (polishtheatrejournal.com) and of the curatorial team of the Forum of the Future of Culture in Warsaw. She is also one of the team of experts who developed the most recent cultural policy for Warsaw. She has collaborated with Marta Górnicka on her choral theatre work since it launched in 2010 with The Chorus of Women.
László Upor is a Hungarian dramaturg, literary translator, essayist and university professor. Laszlo predominately specialises in contemporary drama and the performing arts. As a dramaturg, he has worked with most of the leading mainstream companies but also with several independent artists, physical theatres and puppet theatres in Hungary. He spent several months as resident dramaturg in the literary departments of major theatres in London, New York and Dublin. His translations include novels, non-fiction and over 50 stage plays. He has published two books and numerous articles on theatre, film, and contemporary circus. Laszlo is the former Vice-Rector/Acting Rector of University of Theatre and Film Arts in Budapest.
Martin Bernátek is Assistant Professor, Area Head of Theatre Studies and Vice-Chair at the Department of Theatre and Film Studies, Palacký University Olomouc, Czech Republic. In his research and teaching, he focuses on historical theatrical avant-gardes, theatrical theory and the mediality of performance. Martin co-founded the local cultural activist initiative Cultural Brno (Brno kulturní), and the post-disciplinary Josefov Summer School, co-organised with the Institute of Polish Culture, University of Warsaw and the Department of Theatre Studies, Masaryk University, Brno. He believes that (cultural) institutions are anchoring points in the building of hegemony and, therefore, should be understood as paradoxical and multilayered frontiers of power relations and social conflict, rather than something that is simply good, bad, or neutral in relation to politics.
Alice Koubová is a researcher at the Institute of Philosophy at the Czech Academy of Sciences and a longterm lecturer at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. She has also been a guest lecturer at a number of institutions abroad (in Helsinki, Malmö, Bremen, Giessen). Her research focuses on performative and applied philosophy, ethics and post-structuralist thought and is carried out in intensive collaboration with public institutions (The National Theatre, Bazaar Festival, Studio ALTA, TANTEHORSE, The Arts and Theatre Institute, SNG Bratislava), primarily through the preparation and facilitation of public discussions on political and artistic topics, dramaturgy and providing feedback. She is the coordinator of the programme Strategie AV21 Formy a funkce komunikace (Strategy AV21: Forms and Functions of Communication), which supports the development of collaboration between the research community and the public sphere, as well as between different fields of research.