ISTR 2007 – Schedule

Inaugural Symposium

Drama and Film Centre, Queen’s University Belfast | 13 – 14 April 2007

In 2007 Drama Studies at Queen’s hosted the Inaugural Symposium of the Irish Society for Theatre Research (ISTR). Professor Janelle Reinelt gave the plenary lecture, and scholars and practitioners from across the island of Ireland and around the world came to discuss the broad spectrum of theatre from page to stage.

ISTR 2007Book of Abstracts

Friday 13 April 2007

[Registration Desk in the Foyer open daily from 0900]


1000-1200       WORKING GROUPS SESSION 1

  • •    Cultural Identities: Venue: Theatre. Convenors: Brian Singleton, Anna McMullan, Cathy Leeney
  • •    Textual Practices: Venue: Screen 1. Convenors: Eamonn Jordan, Paul Murphy
  • •    Performance Studies:    Venue: Screen 2.    Convenors: Bernadette Sweeney, Lisa Fitzpatrick
  • •    History & Historiography: Venue: Seminar Room. Convenors: Tom Maguire, Lionel Pilkington


1200-1300       LUNCH Venue: Foyer


1300-1500       WORKING GROUPS SESSION 2 – Venues as per session 1

1500-1520       COFFEE Venue: Foyer


1520-1720       WORKING GROUPS SESSION 3 Venues as per session 1

 1720-1740       COFFEE Venue: Foyer

1740-2000     Soirée in the Naughton Gallery, incorporating the launch of Women in Irish Drama: A Century of Authorship and Representation, edited by Dr. Melissa Sihra, Trinity College Dublin


Saturday 14 April 2007

0930-1100     PANEL SESSIONS 1

Panel A: Northern Voices: Geography, Sociology & Historiography Venue: Screen 2. Chair: Lionel Pilkington

Paul Murphy (Queen’s University Belfast), ‘George Shiels’s The Rugged Path and the Persistence of Class Conflict in Post-Partition Ireland’

Paul Devlin (University of Ulster), ‘Theatre on Thin Ice: Joe Tomelty’s April in Assagh at the Ulster Group Theatre’

Mark Phelan (Queen’s University Belfast), ‘The Necessity of “De-Hyderating” the Revival’: Thompson in Tir-na-n-Og’


Panel B: Applied & Community Theatre in Northern Ireland Venue: Seminar Room. Chair: Bernadette Sweeney

Ellen Burns (Queen’s University Belfast), ‘Developing an International Theatre Laboratory in Belfast’

Eva Urban (University College Dublin), ‘The Politics of the Peace Process and Theatrical Imagination: Dave Duggan and Sole Purpose Productions’


Panel C: Interrogating Nationalism on the Stage Venue: Screen 1. Chair: Cathy Leeney

Anthony Bradley (University of Vermont), ‘Nation, Pedagogy and Performance: W.B. Yeats’s The King’s Threshold’

Ian Walsh (University College Dublin), ‘The Neglected Drama of the Third Space: Decolonisation and Maurice Meldon’s Purple Path to the Poppy Field’

Tania Scott (University of Glasgow), ‘Lord Dunsany’s Interrogation of Nationalist and Masculinist Stereotypes in The Glittering Gate and King Argimenes and the Unknown Warrior’


1100-1120       COFFEE Venue: Foyer


1120-1250     PANEL SESSIONS 2

Panel D: Multi-Lingual Performance: a Case Study of Work in Progress Venue: Theatre. Chair: Tom Maguire

In October 2006, David Grant (a theatre director and lecturer in drama at Queen’s University, Belfast), Orna Akad (a writer and director from Tel Aviv) and Dave Duggan (a writer and director from ’Derry) conducted an image-theatre workshop with Arab and Jewish actors at Al Midan Theatre in Haifa, an Arab-language theatre. Images arising from the workshop, were then presented as part of a conference on ‘Theatre & Conflict’ at the Acco Festival. Grant, Akad and Duggan have subsequently been developing a practice-led research project which will use texts in four verbal languages – Arabic English, Hebrew and Irish – in a strongly image-based theatrical context to create a short performance on the theme of state violence against the citizen. In this panel David Grant, Orna Akad and Dave Duggan will present an account of the current status of the project from their different perspectives. The panel will also feature a short image-based performance by drama students at Queen’s University based on working texts by Akad and Duggan written for the project.


Panel E: Staging Experimental Theatre in Ireland in the 1920’s & 1930s Venue: Screen 2. Chair: Brian Singleton

Elaine Sisson (Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design & Technology), ‘Denis Johnston and the Influence of European Modernism/Expressionism’

Liam Doona (Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design & Technology), ‘Terence Gray and Irish Theatre/European Modernism’


Panel F: Cultural Dissonance & Critical Practice Venue: Screen 1. Chair: Melissa Sihra

Aine Sheil (Trinity College Dublin), ‘Opera in Ireland: a Case of Cultural Dissonance?’

Maire Kelly (University College Dublin), ‘Sheep’s Milk on the Boil: Theatre as Consciousness in Action’

Iris Park (University College Dublin), ‘Playwrights Speak in Tongues’


1250-1350       LUNCH Venue: Foyer

1350-1520     INAUGURAL GENERAL MEETING Venue: Theatre

 1520-1540       COFFEE Venue: Foyer

1540-1710     PANEL SESSIONS 3

Panel G: Conflicted & Conflicting Identities Venue: Theatre. Chair: Paul Murphy

Brian Singleton (Trinity College Dublin), ‘Contemporary Irish Theatre and Monologies of Masculinities’

Melissa Sihra (Trinity College Dublin), ‘”Ud’s so horrible ud has to be true”: On Raftery’s Hill and the Possibilities of a Feminist Mimesis’

Matthew Causey (Trinity College Dublin), ‘No Logo, No Identitarian Logic: The Bio-Politics of Performing Irishness’


Panel H: Staging Ireland in America/America in Ireland Venue: Screen 1. Chair: Anna McMullan

Katie Gough (University of Glasgow), ‘”Trapped in Bad Scripts”: Examining Women in the American and Northern Irish Civil Rights Movements’

Bernth Lindfors (University of Texas at Austin/Queen Mary, University of London), ‘Ira Aldridge in Ireland’

Patrick Lonergan (NUI Galway), ‘”We have raped the world”: Violence, Globalization and Aesthetics in Elizabeth Kuti’s The Sugar Wife’


Panel I: Modes of Dramaturgy & Methodologies of Practice Venue: Screen 2: Chair: Eamonn Jordan

Helena Enright (University of Exeter), ‘Breaking the Silence and Bearing Witness to Domestic Violence through Theatre of Testimony’

Agnes Pallai (Sligo Institute of Technology), ‘Cultural Differences and Practical Problems in Staging Brian Friel’s Translations in Oradea’

 Nicholas Johnson (Trinity College Dublin), ‘A Voice Comes to One in the Dark: Reading, Radio and the Seancham’


1710-1730       COFFEE Venue: Foyer


1730-1830   Plenary lecture by Professor Janelle Reinelt, University of Warwick, President of IFTR, introduced by Professor Brian Singleton, Trinity College Dublin, President Elect of IFTR

Venue: Theatre


1900                DINNER

Venue: Deane’s at Queen’s