Professor Elizabeth Tomlin
- Professor in Theatre and Performance (Theatre, Film & Television Studies)
I joined the team at Glasgow in 2017 from the University of Birmingham where I’d worked in the Department of Drama since 2006. My first academic post was at Manchester Metropolitan University where I held the post of Research Fellow in Performing Arts from 1997-2006. From 1999 – 2009, in tandem with my post at MMU, I was the co-artistic director of Point Blank Theatre where I wrote and directed the nationally touring productions Dead Causes 2000, Nothing to Declare 2001/2 (in which I also performed), Operation Wonderland (2004) and Roses and Morphine 2005. During my time with Point Blank I also led education projects with children and adults across South Yorkshire, and directed community and youth theatre productions.
I specialise in the analysis of British and European contemporary theatre and performance (post-1990) through the lens of political and cultural theory. My latest monograph, Political Dramaturgies and Theatre Spectatorship: Provocations for Change, is now available.
This research is supported by the School’s Research Hub, Dramaturgy as Critical Practice.
Growing out of this body of research I am in the early stages of exploring questions of class identity and notions of ‘the people’ as they influence dramaturgies of ideological address and response within and beyond the theatre. As part of this wider project, I am interested in the figuration of the working-class subject on the UK stage, and within UK arts policy, and the political implications of the prevalence of autobiography and the practice of staging non-professional performers in theatres of real people.
My second field of research concerns the politics of cultural production, with an emphasis on the British theatre industry and British arts funding and policy developments. I was PI on the AHRC-funded research network, Incubate- Propagate, which examined, in partnership with Arts funding bodies, emerging artists and independent producers, how platforms for artist development might be extended and diversified to increase access routes into the profession for non-graduate theatre-makers. Following the workshops that took place in Leeds, London and Glasgow (2018-19) I co-edited the special journal issue, Artist Development: Class, Diversity and Exclusion (2020), with contributions from the project participants and beyond.
The open access issue is available here.
I continue, on occasion, to develop my research-led practice in writing for performance and contemporary dramaturgies of theatre-making. Most recently I have written and performed two spoken-word texts: The Cassandra Commission (2014-15), and Medusa’s Lament (2020) which form two parts of an eventual trilogy exploring ideological interpellation of the spectator in the context of climate crisis.
- 2018, Incubate-Propagate, AHRC Research Network Grant (PI), £36,345
- 2012, The Pool Game, Arts Council England, £17,900
- 2011, Acts and Apparitions, AHRC research fellowship (PI), £33,140
- 2010, The Pool Game, Arts Council England, £5,000
- 2005, Roses & Morphine, Arts Council England, £25,000
- 2004, Operation Wonderland, Arts Council England, £18,000
I welcome PhD and Masters by Research applications from students in the areas of performance and political theory, performance and class, contemporary European theatre and dramaturgical experimentation in new writing and ensemble practice.
Current doctoral students (at previous institution)
- Shifting Circumstances and Documentary Practices
Doctoral projects supervised to completion
- Tell me it’s real’: The Practices and Possibilities of a Writer-Driven Experiential Theatre (practice-based PhD)
- ‘Contemporary Antigones, Medeas and Trojan Women Perform on the World Stage’ (Now published as: Hypertheatre: Contemporary Radical Adaptation of Greek Tragedy, (London and New York: Routledge, 2020))
- Female Representation in Contemporary Performance (practice-based PhD)
- Zhang, Nannan (Translation Studies), 'Theatre Translation under the Social Change: A Study on the Xianfeng Xiju (Avant-garde theatre) in Contemporary China (1980-2016)'
- Lapid Mashall, Kfir
Introducing “Judicial Theatre” as the Performance of Theatrical Mock Trials
- I regularly teach Performing Character and Advanced Theatre Making, and contribute to courses such as Shaping Futures, Research Methods and Contemporary Devising Practices.
- I lecture on acting, postmodernism and the postdramatic.
- I am co-editor of the Cambridge University Press series Elements in Theatre, Performance and the Political
- I am a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and a member of the International Advisory Board for the book series Adaptation in Theatre and Performance (Palgrave Macmillan)
- I am the external examiner for the BA Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Warwick