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New Undergraduate Course Supplement 2019

THEA 10.33 Contemporary Performance

This course introduces and examines trends in international performance practices since 2000, with an emphasis on the past decade. All of this work is theatrical, but none of it is traditional theater. Topics include virtual performance, theater as activism and social practice, documentary performance, eco-performance, visual “live art,” movement performance, and interactive work that centers the spectator's experience. The course will feature multiple visits with artists who are in residence, performing, or developing interdisciplinary work at the Hopkins Center. We will experience works live when possible and view video documentation of many others. Artists’ writings and articles from performing arts journals will offer theory and context.

 As a discussion-based seminar, active participation during class is essential as we seek to situate performances within their sociopolitical and artistic contexts and conceptualize the role and possibilities of performance in our rapidly changing world, including its potential to reflect and reshape its cultures and societies. In addition to gaining critical perspective and honing analytical skills, students in this course will join with those in THEA 90 for an intensive hands-on workshop in physical theater technique led by Quinn Bauriedel of the Pig Iron School for Advanced Performance Training. The course will culminate in a final project in which students create their own work of contemporary performance, paired with a theoretical paper describing and contextualizing the choices and goals of their piece.

Distributive and/or World Culture


The Timetable of Class Meetings contains the most up-to-date information about a course. It includes not only the meeting time and instructor, but also its official distributive and/or world culture designation. This information supersedes any information you may see elsewhere, to include what may appear in this ORC/Catalog or on a department/program website. Note that course attributes may change term to term therefore those in effect are those (only) during the term in which you enroll in the course.