I am a dramaturg and academic with a research interest in modes of theatrical authorship including writing, directing and devising as well as theatre criticism in the digital age.
On finishing high school I left a country called Yugoslavia and arrived in Yorkshire. I studied at the Universities of Huddersfield and Hull, and acquired additional training at the National Student Drama Festival and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
I have designed and delivered courses in dramaturgy, writing for performance and theatre-making at the universities of Newcastle, Warwick, Bristol and Kent and have given talks and workshops at, among others, Bretton Hall - University of Leeds, Davidson College North Carolina, Moscow Art Theatre School, National University of Singapore, Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts, Babes Bolyai Univeristy Cluj, Goldsmiths, Royal Holloway and University of Oxford. I have worked as the company dramaturg at Northern Stage in Newcastle, and as an education programme manager and practitioner at the Royal Shakespeare Company. As a freelance dramaturg I have been employed by New Writing North, West Yorkshire Playhouse, National Student Drama Festival, DanceCity, Circomedia, Accidental Collective and the Almeida Theatre.
I was a recipient of the David Bradby Research TaPRA Prize in 2015 and the Sunday Times Harold Hobson Student Drama Critic Award in 1998. I was also nominated for the Allen Wright Award for Arts Criticism in 2002.
For 13 years I was a member of the Stage Newspaper’s Edinburgh reviewing team and the Edinburgh Acting Excellence Awards judging panel. I have also read for the Bruntwood Playwriting Prize in 2015 and was a member of the judging panel for the John Whiting Award in 2010.
I have served as a peer reviewer for the AHRC, British Academy, Austrian Science Fund, FWO – Research Foundation Flanders, and for Routledge, Palgrave, Methuen, Intellect. I have held editorial roles for the Journal of Adaptation in Film and Performance and Contemporary Theatre Review. I have also held external examining positions (Portsmouth, Goldsmiths) and participated in course validation procedures at several higher education institutions in the UK. I am currently External Examiner on MA Dramaturgy and Playwriting at the University of Glasgow and on MA Theatre and Performance at Queen Mary, University of London.
Additionally, I have served on the Board of Trustees for Circomedia, the Executive Committee of the Dramaturgs’ Network and the HE Advisory Board for Digital Theatre Plus.
My work has been funded by the Arts Council and by the AHRC (including Fellowship Award, Research Network, and Follow on Funding).
Memberships include Dramaturgs’ Network, Society of Authors, International Association of Theatre Critics and Higher Education Academy. I am an intermittent member of the Directing and Dramaturgy TaPRA Working Group and co-convenor of Translation, Adaptation, Dramaturgy working group at IFTR.
I have supervised PhD theses on the subjects of stand up comedy and punk, Martin McDonagh, psychic distress in contemporary British theatre, ensemble theatre and theatre for babies. I welcome proposals in any aspect of contemporary British and European theatre and performance, theatre criticism and festival culture.
I am currently supervising PhD theses on applied theatre in the Balkans, lecture performances, sound and performance, and embedded criticism.
I have examined one MPhil and four PhDs.
2019 (forthcoming). ‘The Heterarchical Director: A model of authorship for the 21st century’, in revised anniversary edition of Directors’ Theatre by David Bradby and David Williams, edited by Peter Boenisch and David Williams (London: Macmillan International).
2018. [Special Issue on Oliver Frljić], Interventions 28:2, Contemporary Theatre Review, co-edited with Bryce Lease, https://www.contemporarytheatrereview.org/2018/06/
2016. Theatre Criticism: Changing Landscapes, edited by Duška Radosavljević (London: Methuen Bloomsbury).
2016. 'Reversing the Process: Investigating Multi-Disciplinary Compositional Practices in The Fall of Icarus ', (co-authored with George Rodosthenous), Theatre Topics, 26: 1 (March), pp. 105-116.
2015. 'Kneehigh Theatre'. In British Theatre Companies: From Fringe to Mainstream, edited by Liz Tomlin (London: Methuen Bloomsbury), pp. 155-78.
2014. 'Theatre as an Intellectual Concertina: Interview with Simon Stephens' in Theatre and Adaptation: Return, Rewrite, Repeat, edited by Margherita Laera (London: Methuen Bloomsbury), pp. 255-68.
2014. The Place of a Dramaturg in 21st Century England' in Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy, edited by Magda Romanska (London, New York: Routledge), pp. 40-44.
2014. 'Towards Performed Dramaturgy' in New Dramaturgy: International Perspectives, edited by Katalin Trencsenyi and Bernadette Cochrane (London: Methuen Bloomsbury), pp. 68-79.
2013. Theatre-Making: Interplay Between Text and Performance in the 21st Century (Basingstoke: Palgrave) [David Bradby TaPRA Research Prize 2015].
2013. The Contemporary Ensemble: Interviews with Theatre-Makers, edited by Duška Radosavljević (London: Routledge).
2012. 'Shared Utopias? Alan Lyddiard, Lev Dodin and the Northern Stage Ensemble’ in Russians in Britain: British Theatre and the Russian Tradition of Actor Training, edited by Jonathan Pitches (London: Routledge), pp. 139-66.
2012. ‘Sarah Kane's Illyria as the land of violent love: a Balkan reading of Blasted’, Contemporary Theatre Review – themed issue ‘South’, Vol. 22 (4), 2012, pp. 499-511
My practice as a dramaturg is wide-ranging and has included aspects of authorship, consultancy, curation, translation, advocacy, mentoring and, chiefly, collaboration.
Notable recent credits include:
2015. Dramaturg. Oresteia, Almeida/West End, London (Author / Director: Robert Icke)
2015. Writer. (un)decorated, Serbian City Club, London (Director: Maja Milatovic-Ovadia)
2012. Dramaturg. EveryONE is Looking for SomeONE (Accidental Collective)
2011. Dramaturg, Imagining O, University of Kent (Director: Richard Schechner)
In 2014 I set up The Mums and Babies Ensemble with Annie Rigby, Lena Simić and our respective babies, in collaboration with London Bubble. A public engagement project funded by the AHRC, The Mums and Babies Ensemble was a performance/script development process involving multiple audiences as co-authors at GIFT Festival Gateshead, Fun Palaces / Lyric Hammersmith and SPRINT at Camden People’s Theatre. The resulting script was published by The Institute of the Art and Practice of Dissent at Home.
Other recent public engagement activities I initiated include:
2018 STR Edward Gordon Craig Lecture by Oliver Frljić: The Representational Weaknesses of Democracy and Theatre in the Early 21st Century, at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, 28 June 2018.
Robert Icke, A Lecture and Q and A, at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, 2 May 2018.
Theatre, Interactivity, Democracy Symposium at Unicorn Theatre, 22 April 2015 (delivered with Pablo Pakula)
Friday Salon – Lifting the Curtain: On Audience and Authorship at the ICA, 25 October 2015 (delivered with Accidental Collective and Chris Johnston/Argument Room)
Symposium on Eastern European Hamlets at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, 30 January 2013 (with Alexandra Portmann)
I also contribute as a writer and Regional Managing Editor to The Theatre Times.
Other non-academic publications in recent years include:
2017. entries on Mike Alfreds and Kneehigh Theatre for DT+ Fundamentals.
2015. ‘1984- Getting to the Heart of the Text’ - Headlong Theatre website
2015. ‘Theatre-Making: The End of Directing as We Know It’. In: Popovici, Iulia, ed. The End of Directing: The Beginning of Theatre-Making and Devising in European Theatre. Tact Editura/ Sibiu Festival.
2015. ‘On the Virtues of “Open Source” Innovation in the Arts’. In: Svich, Caridad, ed. Innovation in Five Acts, TCG, pp. 35-37.
I collaborated with the West Yorkshire Playhouse on the first professional production of a Serbian play in the UK - Huddersfield by Uglješa Šajtinac, adapted by Chris Thorpe, directed by Alex Chisholm and published by Oberon Books in 2004.
Other published translations include:
2017. The Deceased by Branislav Nušić, in Selected Serbian Plays, New Avenue Books.
2000. The Propsmaster by Uglješa Šajtinac in Three Contemporary European Plays, Alumnus.
Nothing to declare.