Text and Performance in Contemporary British Theatre interrogates the paradoxical nature of theatre texts, which have been understood both as separate literary objects in their own right and as material for performance.
Drawing on analysis of contemporary practitioners who are working creatively with text, the book re-examines the relationship between text and performance within the specific context of British theatre. The chapters discuss a wide range of theatre-makers creating work in the UK from the 1990s onwards, from playwrights like Tim Crouch and Jasmine Lee-Jones to companies including Action Hero and RashDash. In doing so, the book addresses issues such as theatrical authorship, artistic intention, and the apparent incompleteness of plays as both written and performed phenomena. Text and Performance in Contemporary British Theatre also explores the implications of changing technologies of page and stage, analysing the impact of recent developments in theatre-making, editing and publishing on the status of the theatre text.
Written for scholars, students and practitioners alike, Text and Performance in Contemporary British Theatre provides an original perspective on one of the most enduring problems to occupy theatre practice and scholarship.
1. The problem of the theatre text 2. Dramaturgical innovations and evasions of authority: authorship and intention 3. Contemporary approaches to classic texts: supplementation and iterability 4. On the page: changing technologies of editing and publication