Training Queer: Intersections of Queer/Gender Studies and Actor/Performer Training

Proposed session for the Association for Theatre in Higher Education

Annual Conference 2013 (August 1-4, Orlando, FL)

We know that heterosexism is powerfully reproduced in many contexts where acting is taught. What alternatives exist for rigorous actor and performer training processes that do not fall into this trap? Is there an inherent tension between embodied discipline and queerness? How might developments in gender theory and politics be linked to changes not only in the public spectacle of performance but also in the semi-private zone of performer training? If actor training is often also gender training, can it sometimes instead be training (in) queer? Does queer performance have its own training methods, protocols, and techniques? Is post-dramatic, postmodern theatre also post-gender? Is Viewpoints queer? Is Grotowski queer? Can Method acting be queer?

Topics could include:

• gender dynamics in current and/or historical training approaches

• sexuality, eroticism, and pedagogy in performer training

• training for feminist/queer performance art

• identity production (or subversion) in acting class

• theories of social practice (habitus, performativity)

• theories of embodiment and phenomenology

• training in masculinity, femininity, and other (trans)genders

• queer approaches to actor and performer training

• connections between actor training, dance training, and athletic training

• critiques of existing acting paradigms (e.g., the neutral body, or becoming the role)

• discipline as coercion; discipline as empowerment

If interested, please send abstract and bio to <> by October 20th.

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