Head of Postgraduate Research

I’m a UK born practitioner-scholar interested in the space between bodies in performance, especially in the affective gap between audience and performer. I am committed to interrogating the academic voice, and in exploring the role of collaboration in the generation of knowledge. Over the past two decades, I have built a career in arts education and performer training working to support undergraduate, postgraduate taught, and doctoral students across the wide variety of the contemporary arts. 

In 2004 I completed the first jointly authored practice-as-research PhD to be undertaken within a UK arts discipline. This highly innovative approach to knowledge generation has led to a career-long focus on experimentation in teaching and learning, and an academic career that has sought to balance said experimentation with an attendant rigour.

I have worked in a variety of UK Universities, running undergraduate and postgraduate programmes, and have undertaken freelance work in Finland, Portugal, and Sweden.

Contact details

Qualifications

Qualifications

Year Qualification Awarding body
2004 PhD Motorway as Site of Performance Manchester Metropolitan University
1998 MA Contemporary Theatre Practice Lancaster University
1994 BA(Hons) History & Theatre Studies University of Liverpool

Membership of external committees

I have been a reviewing panel member for the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (Portugal) since 2018.

Research Interests

Research interests and expertise

Since the completion of my PhD in 2004, a project which brought together site-specific practices, collaborative devising strategies, and a non-hierarchical approach to knowledge creation, I have published on topics including practice-as-research, the sublime-anthropocene, and zombies. Since 2016, I have focussed increasingly on audience practices, and explored how spectatorship can function as a shared and transformative experience.

As a practitioner / academic with an internationally recognised track record in research the field practice-research, I have published regularly on this topic since 2004. I have a background in site-specific and socially engaged performance practice, and since 2016 have been researching affective exchange in audience / performer dynamics.

Alongside my own research output, I am one of three editors of the journal Choreographic Practices (Intellect Books), through which I support the research and practice of a range of Dance practitioner / scholars across the globe.

I am an experienced supervisor of doctoral candidates with a successful completion record: I have five successful PhD completions (all practice as research projects), with a further six students in the last year of their studies. I have examined eight doctoral candidates, and developed PGR training packages for the AHRC funded 3D3 Centre for Doctoral Training, and the Erasmus Funded Artistic Doctorates in Europe project. My experience of working with PGR students thus extends beyond supervision, and includes supporting development of best practice in research methodology training.

Research Topics

  • Audience Studies
  • Drag Performance
  • Creative Collaboration
  • Performer Training
  • Site-Specific Performance
  • Body-Based Live Arts Practice

Research Outputs

Events

Research Students

Previous student supervision

I have supervised students with a wide variety of projects including skateboarding, body-art, creative collaboration, material culture, drag performance, robotics and sonic art.

Number of research students supervised to completion

5

Research degrees examined

I have examined four PhD students at University of Plymouth, one at Leeds Beckett University, one at University of Surrey, one at Manchester Metropolitan University and one at Edge Hill University.

Number of research degree examinations

8

Teaching

Areas of teaching

  • Theatre
  • Dance
  • Musical Theatre

Professional Engagement

Engagement with professional associations and societies

I have been a reviewing panel member for the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (Portugal) since 2018. This is the Portuguese funding council for research funding, and I review Arts and Humanities submissions.