Performance, Possession & Automation – a collaborative research project led by Nick Ridout and Orlagh Woods, in collaboration with Joe Kelleher, Fiona Templeton and Simon Vincenzi – invites you to three online conversations.
Automation & Cultural Production
17 July, 6-8pm (BST)
Seb Franklin and Annie McClanahan join Nick Ridout for a conversation about automation and cultural production.
Instead of imagining a future in which our lives are managed for us by robots or AI, it may be time to think instead about how automation is already deeply embedded in our everyday lives. Automation is not replacing human beings, but it may be changing how we work and act, and how we think and feel about ourselves and other people.
Clickhere, to book your place and for further information.
Paul C. Johnson and Rebecca Schneider join Nick Ridout for a conversation about possession and performance.
What if possession is a totally modern idea? Could it be a way for people who live modern lives in a supposedly secular culture to describe modes of being that don’t fit with their ideas of what it is to be yourself? How does performance help us think about possession? Are performance and possession both ways of becoming an automated or programmed self?
Clickhere, to book your place and for further information.
Kyla Wazana Tompkins and Roberto Strongman join Nick Ridout for a conversation about possession and subjectivity.
Might possession and other experiences in which people seem to lose control of themselves – like intoxication or narcosis – expand our understanding of what it means to be a subject, beyond the bounded subjectivity assumed and promoted in so-called ‘Enlightenment’ thought? Do subjects always and everywhere have to fit neatly into bodies?
Click here to book your place and for further information.
Performance, Possession & Automation is a research project exploring automation and possession as two ways of thinking about what happens to human subjects who act in ways that they do not themselves fully control. How can making and thinking about performance contribute to thinking about these ideas?
This project is supported through the Collaborations Fund of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and The Centre for Public Engagement, Queen Mary University of Londonin partnership with Fierce Festival and Hampstead Theatre.
Shakespeare’s candlelit production of Macbeth premieres at The Holy Trinity Church,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare’s burial place, and then tours to London
for a very limited run at St Leonard’s
Church, Shoreditch, the burial site of Shakespeare’s main actor, Richard
Shakespeare is an innovative theatre company that combines scholarship and
creative practice inspired by the working conditions in which Shakespeare
conceived his plays. Shakespeare’s “myriad minded” texts are brought to life by
a diverse, gender-blind, actor-led ensemble, in an intensively short rehearsal
period, without a director.
Stratford location: Church of the Holy Trinity, Old Town, Stratford-upon-Avon CV37 6BG
Looking for an LGBT+ friendly employer, not sure where to begin? Join us as part of the Students’ Union LGBT+ History Month and ahead of the Pride Careers Fair to find out the key aspects to look for when searching for the right employer to begin your career journey. Hear from a panel who will give invaluable advice and talk about their personal experiences.
Topics will include:
How to identify a supportive employer How to come out at work and the benefits How to build a network What LGBT+ students have to offer
We’ll be hearing from:
Triona Desmond – lesbian co-parent and Senior Chartered Trade Mark Attorney at Pinsent Masons LLP. Sal Morton (he/they) – a queer artsperson and senior researcher and content writer for career guide Chambers Student. Daniel Nasr – diversity & inclusion specialist for the charity and international development sectors, currently leading on Unicef’s inclusion strategy in the U.K. Dr Lipi Begum– senior fashion and sustainability lecturer and researcher for the University of the Arts London. Kenneth Pritchard– gay public affairs and strategic communications professional for the Post Office.
Timings for the event will be as follows: 16:00-17:00 Panel conversation 17:00-17:30 Audience Q&A 17:30-18:00 Chit chat
Interested in the Media sector? Journalism? Publishing? Theatre? Radio? Join us to explore a variety of industries and roles. Learn why these roles are realistic to pursue and how to secure a position in your chosen sector. You will hear from professionals who will talk about their personal experience of the sector and give you top tips along the way! Come prepared with some questions and be ready to do some valuable networking.
Confirmed representatives include (with more to follow!):
PriceWaterhouse Coopers (PwC) is a global
professional services firm operating in 157 countries and employing 276,000
staff in 100s of different roles advising businesses on areas including
audit, tax, legal, consultancy, climate change, human resources, risk, deals
and many more. They are really interested in employing graduates studying
Humanities and in fact already do employ a number of QM Humanities alumni.
Ashley O’Connell, a recruiter at PwC, is
coming to talk about why a global business such as PwC is interested in you,
what skills do you have that are valuable to a business like theirs, what kind
of opportunities exist, why these are good roles for Humanities students, what
they look for in students, what kind of activities they value that you get
involved in and how Humanities students can do well in recruitment.
Ashley is flying over from the Channel
Islands and will talk about opportunities in both London and the Channel
Islands including, graduate jobs, summer internships and insight
programmes. N.B. There are still vacancies for 2020 graduates to start in
the Channel Islands this summer.
If you are curious as to what you have to
offer a big business operating in any sector, this is a great chance to
understand how to market your degree in a way that makes you relevant and to
get top tips and insights from a business recruiter.
Our very own Jerry Brotton has been working with Dr Johnson’s House as they present a series of events including a round table discussion about the exhibition and a dramatic reading of Irene by our Drama students.
Visit for free to see our upcoming exhibition, London’s
Theatre of the East and get a chance to meet the artists whose work is on
display at the House. Explore all four floors of Dr Johnson’s House and discuss
with our artists their varying responses to the theme of London’s links to the
Middle East and North Africa over the past 500 years. You can read more about
our exhibition here.
There’s no need to book, just turn up on the day!
Ottoman Empire map end of section: Roundtable Discussion
Thursday 14 November 7pm (Doors open at 6.30pm)
Join us for a roundtable discussion between the artists
featured in our upcoming exhibition, London’s Theatre of the East, organised in
collaboration with The Arab British Centre. Playwright Hannah Khalil, novelist
Saeida Rouass, documentary photographer Lena Naassana and textile designer Nour
Hage will join Dr Jerry Brotton, author of This Orient Isle, and the Donald
Hyde Curator of Dr Johnson’s House for a discussion on how each artist
approached and responded to the theme of the historical connections of the
Middle East and North Africa with London, via the lens of Dr Johnson’s 1749
play, Irene, set during the fall of Constantinople in 1453.
Tickets £12 – includes a complimentary glass of wine
London’s Theatre of the East – Late night opening
Tuesday 19 November 6pm – 8pm (last entry at 7.30pm)
A rare opportunity to explore the Dr Johnson’s House at
twilight and see all four floors of the museum, plus our upcoming exhibition
You’ll also have a chance to meet the artists featured in
London’s Theatre of the East in an informal setting and to discuss their
exhibits with them, which are their responses to Johnson’s 1749 play Irene and
their research into the connections between the Middle East, North Africa and
There’s no need to book, just turn up on the night!
Irene at Dr Johnson’s House
Thursday 21 November 7pm (Doors open at 6.30)
When Irene premiered at the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane in
February 1749 it ran for a respectable but underwhelming nine nights. Johnson
regarded it as a failure, as did James Boswell, who claimed his friend ‘had not
the faculty of producing the impressions of tragedy’. But the time has come to
revisit Johnson’s neglected play – join us in the home he was living in while
Irene was originally staged for the first public performance of Johnson’s play
in 270 years!
This dramatic reading of Irene will be performed by the
students from the English and Drama department of Queen Mary University London,
under the direction of Dr Penelope Woods, Lecturer in Drama, with the advice of
Professor Lois Potter, author of The Life of William Shakespeare, A Critical
Biography,and Professor Emerita, University of Delaware.
Tickets £12 – includes a complimentary glass of wine
The event will include: discounted copies of the book, a chance to discuss its core topics (neurodiversity, awkwardness, audience participation) using Daniel’s clunkily conceived Rong Table format and due to the date, fully non-commital/over-committed Halloween dress code will be optional.
This one-day symposium will host a series of discussions about the current climate for artistic and cultural production in Britain. The four thematic strands are on English literature (in particular school and university curricula design), publishing, curating and performing. The event brings together experts and practitioners who will share their experience of how these areas of the arts may or may not be changing, especially given ongoing agendas around inclusivity, diversity and ‘decolonising’.
Speakers include: Aditi Anand, Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff, Natasha Bucknor, Elizabeth Cooper, Corinne Fowler, Rachael Gilmour, Nadia Yahya Hafedh, Anthony Joseph, Danuta Kean, Madhu Krishnan, Sharmaine Lovegrove, Malachi McIntosh, Rachael Minott and Jeremy Poynting.
The Sexual Cultures Research Group at QMUL: Saleem Haddad
Saleem Haddad was born in Kuwait City to an Iraqi-German
mother and a Palestinian-Lebanese father. His first novel, Guapa, published in 2016, was awarded a
Stonewall Honour and won the 2017 Polari First Book Prize. His short stories
have been published in a number of anthologies, including most recently in the
Palestinian science fiction anthology “Palestine +100”. Haddad was also
selected as one of the top 100 Global Thinkers of 2016 by Foreign Policy
Magazine. His directorial debut, Marco,
premiered in March 2019 and was nominated for the Iris Prize for Best British
Short. He is currently based in Lisbon.
Saleem will be in conversation with Nadia Atia (QMUL).
There will be an opportunity to buy copies of Guapa, which Saleem
is happy to sign on the day.
East meets west in this high octane dance-off with two titans from the dance world, IMD and Bolly Flex. This show fuses hip hop and Bollywood in four acts, The Greatest Bollywood Showman, The Real Avengers of the UK, The History of Hip Hop and Romeo and Juliet Remixed! Check out glittering examples of cinema’s great dance moves with breath-taking agility and dynamism at Queen Mary’s Great Hall. These tributes and stories use acrobatics and physical theatre and provide the perfect homecoming for both IMD’s Omar Ansah-Awuah and Bolly Flex’s Naz Choudhury to return to their east London roots. Special guest appearances will help ignite this energetic dance spectacular as a reminder that commonalities and differences between cultures can be celebrated in the most exhilarating ways!
A literary conversation between two groups of BAME women – published writers responding creatively to the stories of the SBS support group.
Launching an anthology of writings, Turning the Page, by the SBS Survivors’ Group
Black Sisters ends its 40th anniversary year with a unique evening,
crowning a year- long series of events to celebrate its survival and
reflect on its history. The anthology represents an intimate engagement,
a two-way literary conversation, between established writers and
emotionally vulnerable women who have found relief in writing about
their troubled lives.
The survivors’ group at Southall Black Sisters have spent six months writing their stories in the company of Rahila Gupta.
Jackie Kay, Moniza Alvi, Meena Kandasamy, Miss Yankey and Rahila Gupta
have written new work in response to the stories written by the SBS
women. Their new work will be published in the book and they will read
from this and other work alongside the SBS women. Imtiaz Dharker will also be performing at this event.
Be uplifted! Break your hearts and recommit yourself to the cause during the 16 days of activism against violence against women.
On the verge of a natural disaster, a prison guard is called into work and discovers a newcomer to the team – an Artificial Intelligence named Sally. When the city is evacuated, what happens to the prisoners?
The final 24 candidates for The Mars Mission Programme have been observed for a month by the public in a reality TV show designed to choose the final four. The public have voted and the candidates are about to be sent off to Mars with no hope of return… as soon as the final confirmation is granted.
Lola, Eleanor Rigby, Brown Sugar, Roxanne, and Monica – you may know their names, you may even remember singing them in the shower or at a party. What you probably don’t know is their stories. Neither do they, but they’re trying to figure it out.
‘Celebrating their final year as Europeans, island monkeys Becca and Louise got invited to the 2018 European Capital of Culture in Malta. Lads on tour…Sh!t Theatre went to drink rum with Brits abroad but found mystery and murder in the fight to be European. Here it is, another excuse for the multi award-winning Sh!t Theatre to get drunk on stage. ‘
‘From an Essex-based, sad, weird kid to a less sad, trans, lesbian loudmouth. She’s grown up, gotten hurt and she’s still here and ready to share in her debut hour. Winner of the Best Comedy Show Award at the Brewery Fringe Festival.’
Criticism and Insight
Bechdel Theatre: BT talk gender and representation on stage and list shows that pass the Bechdel Test.
Join us for a FREE Noughts & Crosses (Malorie Blackman) panel event that asks questions like: ‘What wider questions does this production raise about drama and power? How is drama power for you?’. Join Esther Richardson (Director of Noughts & Crosses) and cast members, Drama academics and students from Queen Mary University of London to discuss and explore the powers of Drama. Book here
The panel includes: Heather Agyepong (Sephie, Noughts and Crosses), Esther Richardson (director, Noughts and Crosses), Gail Babb (QMUL and Goldsmiths lecturer and theatre producer, Talawa), Avaes Mohammed (poet, playwright, performer), Dee Ndlovu (QMUL Drama student and theatre maker).
Join us for inspiring mini talks in the park at this free festival which has top street food, stalls and free activities.
Our line up talking about studying and working in the creative industries includes comedian Ahir Shah (BBC3, Live at the Apollo), writer Ayisha Malik, Masterchef winner Natalie Coleman and more pictured above. RSVP here
Is your English teacher always telling you to refer to
literary and historical context but you’re unsure what this looks like in
practice? Have you heard that there are theoretical and philosophical
approaches to texts but aren’t confident using them yourself? Do you wish you
knew more about the Gothic genre and how this could link to more contemporary
genres, such as Science Fiction?
Three outstanding academics, from Queen Mary’s School of
English and Drama, are here to help.
An expert in the body and technology in contemporary
culture, Zara Dinnen, a specialist in the Gothic across the nineteenth century,
Sam Halliday, and an expert in Romanticism with interests in theory and
philosophy, Shahidha Bari, will be unpicking issues around context, theory,
genre and ‘Frankenstein’. They will share their expertise on context, theory
and genre, to unpack how the text could have been received then and how readers
receive it now. They will discuss different frameworks that can be used to
interpret this seminal text, and demonstrate to you what it looks like to apply
those frameworks in practice.
You will leave this event with a better sense of how to
use literary and historical context to develop your analysis of this text; and
you will leave knowing what it would be like to study English at Queen Mary,
where diversity of ideas is at the heart of what we do.
It promises to be the type of lively and engaging
discussion our School of English and Drama is known for!
Our MA Live Art student Şenay Camgöz will screen her 6 minute film, ‘Introducing HALA’ at the V&A tomorrow, Thursday 25 April 2019 at 8.30pm following a talk about art school with QMUL’s Dr Dominic Johnson and Dr Martin O’Brien.
The event is free and is part of the museum’s V&A Friday Late series.
In this conversation, Martin O’Brien, Dominic Johnsonand the Live Art Development Agencydiscuss Live Art within academic institutions and what it means to teach a radical arts practice. They focus on the way in which the MA Live Art at Queen Mary UniversityofLondon and the Live Art Development Agencyteach Live Art, opening up wider questions around educationand experimental arts practices.
AZEEMA: Anti-Art School: on decolonisation and identity
The Raphael Cartoons
Discuss decolonising art schools and education in this panel talk led by AZEEMA. Joining them to explore themes of identity, inclusivity and personal experiences are Shahidha Bari, Danah Abdulla, Jannat Hussein and Shades of Noir. @azeemamagazeemamag.com
Learning Centre, Seminar Room 5
Please note, these performances contain nudity and sensitive material
Join the QMUL/LADA MA Live Art students as they perform actions in response to the spaces and collections at the V&A. Experience an exhibition of separate durational performances, sharing a space with one anothe
Develop your skills to work in the creative and cultural industries with this series of free workshops at Queen Mary University of London. The creative skills project formerly known as DIY HIGH SCHOOL is back for 2019 as DIY LIFE SKILLS.
DIY LIFE SKILLS gives our Queen Mary University of London students and our community vital extra practical skills for working in the creative and cultural industries. These include making videos, photography, tax, CVs, public speaking, social media for work and WordPress/blogging.
DIY LIFE SKILLS is supported by Humanities and Social Sciences at Queen Mary University of London. The workshops are free for our students and our local community.
A picture is said to be worth a 1000 words and this is more true than ever in the age of social media. Join us for an afternoon of photography with DSLR cameras for intermediates. The workshop will include a showcase of Holly Revell’s work and top tips for better performance photography.
#3: VLOG LIKE YOU MEAN IT: Video Production 101
POSTPONED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE – PLEASE STAY TUNED FOR MORE DETAILS
Work with professional videographers to plan, film and edit a short film in one day with pros from Signature Pictures. The intermediate workshop will look at more advanced editing techniques and film production.
Social media = jobs & opportunities. Ignore it at your cost. This session will cover moving away from using social for well, ‘social’ purposes and look to how these channels can be used to network and make important career connections.
An interactive performance for 5 people at a time.
Audience-participants are invited to join Daniel and Frauke in a series of
awkwardly intimate and strange actions, rituals, dances, games, and other
dysfunctional activities brought back in time from a post-neurodivergent
revolution family fun-time future.
Daniel is dyspraxic and is too slow. Frauke has ADHD
and is too quick. They are married and have kids. This interactive performance
is rooted in their experiences of their bodies as neurodivergent lovers,
parents, and weirdo performance makers. It is a space in which clunky
experiences of bodies and actions can be discussed, explored and ultimately
celebrated through ritualisation and play.
Frauke Requardt and Daniel Oliver The Rong Table –6 Apr
Frauke and Daniel invite audiences to explore these themes
through conversation events that use Daniel’s ‘Rong Table‘ set-up. ‘Rong Tables’ are events
for exploring and discussing the key themes of the performance. They are a
development of Lois Weaver’s ‘Long Tables’, in which
the audiences are invited to take part in a discussion by leaving their
audience seats, and sitting at a large table. Daniel has been regularly using
this format to discuss neurodiversity and art over the past three years. .
Recently he has been experimenting with adding different elements and bending
the rules in order to create a space that is more accessible, diverse and
engaging for a broad range of neurodivergent audiences. This means the table is
no longer the only place to talk, getting rid of the audience/participant
divide, allowing for smaller, more discreet conversations to happen around the
space, and for more ways of expressing thoughts to be offered.
For Dadderrs, the Rong Table is something modelled on a chaotic family dinner time rather than a more formal grown-up dinner party. Alongside den-building, and playing with dressing-up, there would also be the opportunity to make objects out of Lego – a prop used in Dadderrs – to explore and express ideas related to the themes of the performance.
Lois Weaver The Situation Room – 6 Apr
The Situation Room is a format for public
discussion created by Lois Weaver that combines theatricality and informal
conversation and encourages us to think about the interdependencies of anxiety
and desire. It’s inspired by the War Room in Stanley Kubrick’s 1964
film, Dr. Strangelove, or, How I Learnt To Stop Worrying And
Love The Bomb where a group of people
sit around a circle of tables and hold a discussion that is moderated by a ‘President’ and monitored by ‘General’ who reminds us we are ‘running
out of time.’
In The Situation Room, members of the audience will be invited to form a Council determined by loosely held affinities: a Council of Elders, an Intergenerational Council, a Council of Queers or Intersectional Feminists; a Council of Agnostics or A-politicals. They are invited to the table to share what is worrying them, from the personal to the geopolitical; to discuss, listen, and then reach a consensus on a single topic of conversation- the ‘Situation’, and finally to consider their desires, ambitions and fantasies as playful and creative solutions to the issue at hand.
Martin O’Brien – Who Cries Wins
This discussion event questions if there is an increase in artists
identifying closely, and leading with, their own histories of trauma and/or
painful autobiography. To what extent is this true, and if true, what may have
As festivals, live platforms and opportunities begin to focus on the
support of these current questions and seeking out artists’ trauma, we pose the
question now: what is the tense line between raising visibility and
exploitation. Additionally, another consideration: Is there such a thing as
This is a public discussion hosted and facilitated by performance artist and scholar Martin O’Brien, with contributions from artists in the Care & Destruction programme.
This tower of imperialism has let in lil’ old me and others in, and over the last 6 months we’ve set up some events which are really different to their usual programming. These events are called unDISTURBED and taste like fine wine.
The events are all things on Stillness (Fri 5th April) and all things Resistance (Sat 6th April), with a sexy and career helping panel on working with resistance called Making Waves which is only £5. The panel includes a really special drama facilitator working on the front lines in prisons, as well as Gal-dem and Azeema magazine founders and a music therapist.
The Friday has an earth ritual in one room from performance collective IntimateAnimals, with ambient music in the other space. Saturday is a celebration of resisting with a collective of fierce Drag Queens with down syndrome, female drum and bass beatbox power from Kimmy Beatbox, Steamdown who jump off the sonic springboard of Afrofuturism, grime and future soul, all fused together with the fearless spontaneity of jazz AMONG OTHER SURPRISES AND DELIGHTS.
Come! It’ll be a lot of fun, buy tickets now and enjoy redefining this space.
(Royal Albert Hall is beautiful and if you’re not from London and have never been it is a MUST-SEE)
How and why are Shakespeare’s plays performed, filmed, read and taught from China to Chile, from Singapore to South Africa? What makes Shakespeare a “global” force? Shakespeare’s plays display the vast panoply of human desires and emotions: from passionate love to bewildering fear, from unswerving loyalty to basest envy, from the noblest instances of self-sacrifice to the desire to inflict unspeakable pain. His depictions of these emotions are often shocking in their vividness, yet always recognisable as fundamental facets of human experience. This course will look at Shakespeare’s afterlives in different parts of the world, and include hands-on workshops in which we will try out different possible ways of interpreting “global” plays like Antony and Cleopatra.
This module draws on London’s rich theatre and performance history, and the wide-ranging opportunities the city offers to engage with historical and contemporary theatre and performance. It explores how historical, social, cultural and architectural contexts produce meaning through theatre and performance. It introduces you to a range of ways of analysing plays and performances in relation to the conditions in which they were created. We will cover a range of historical periods and genres including, for example, Shakespeare and his contemporaries, eighteenth and nineteenth-century theatre, contemporary theatre, and performance beyond the literary play text (e.g. Live Art and performance art, club and pub performance, performance in galleries, sound walks). The module includes regular field trips to performances and other relevant locations.