Approaching performance though praxis
Author: Farrier, Stephen
Source: Studies in Theatre & Performance, Volume 25, Number 2, August 2005 , pp. 129-144(16)
Abstract:In an article in The Drama Review, Richard Schechner (2000b) discusses the value of theory in performance studies. He talks about the relationship of poststructuralism, in its broadest sense, with performance studies and also discusses the way in which such a relationship is currently modelled. In this article I will develop Schechner's ideas about the value of theory and practice in relation to two examples of practice in which I have been engaged with second-year drama and education undergraduate students at the Central School of Speech and Drama, London. I reform Schechner's ideas of the relationship between practice and theory by expressing the terms of his article within a relation of praxis. However, praxis need not only be seen as the relationship of theory to practice in terms of the work it produces in the studio; praxis can also be used as a means by which students can gain access to what could be described as `high theory'. I end with a discussion of the ways in which praxis can help expose what is often disavowed in the tension between what can be described broadly as `a theoretical approach to making performance' and `a physical approach to making performance'. I also make a provisional list of the potentials of working with praxis in the mind and in the body.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2005-08-01
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