Perforum Conference 2016 – Call for Papers

The Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Theatre and Performance Practices (CIR) Drama and Theatre Studies (School of Music and Theatre) in conjunction with Women’s Studies and CACSSS Graduate School, University College Cork (Ireland) and Cork Midsummer Festival 2016 present:

Postgraduate Perforum Conference (2016)

Within, Behind, and Beyond the Fringe

Sunday 19th, Monday 20th, and Tuesday 21st June 2016

The idea of the fringe has no singular identity. There are fringe festivals where new and emerging work takes centre-stage. There are also longstanding fringe forms with rich histories and powerful cultural impacts that nevertheless tend to be classified as “niche” (circus, magic, puppetry, cabaret, variété, etc.). The fringe can stretch to encompass the offstage processes of pre-performance training, the offstage space of the classroom, and the offstage arena of critical theory and analysis. It can even extend to investigations of the intersections between the “fringe” and society: how can creative and activist imagination and innovation affect social change? To take such a broad view of the fringe is to invite an exploration of the limelight, the low-light, and everything in between. This conference aims to bring the fringes front and centre to interrogate, analyse, and share ideas amongst practitioner-researchers, artists, scholars, and activists.

We welcome:

  • Scholarly papers of 20-minutes’ duration
  • Presentations about completed creative works
  • Presentations of creative works in progress (up to 20-minutes)
  • Workshops, master classes, roundtable discussions, etc.
  • Posters, exhibits, installations, etc.

Themes to consider include (but are not limited to):

  • Embodied practice: choreography, listening, meditation, and cultivating presence
  • Hidden histories: performers, politics, and identity
  • Gender: representation and resistance
  • Performance training and pedagogies
  • Community and participative arts
  • Traditional, new, or contemporary circus
  • Solo performance, from performance art to stand-up comedy
  • Performance as activism
  • Magic and mentalism
  • Puppetry and object manipulation/animation
  • Vaudeville and neo-Vaudeville
  • Cabaret and variété
  • Burlesque, “boylesque”, and drag performance histories and practices
  • Alternative approaches to character development, devising, writing, and directing

Confirmed Keynote Speaker and Workshop Leader: Tim Miller, internationally acclaimed performance artist, activist, author, and teacher. His performance workshop will take place in the days prior to the conference, culminating in a performance presentation by participants on Monday, 20th June. This workshop and the keynote are generously supported by UCC’s Strategic Research Fund.

Learn more at

The programme will run concurrently with the annual Women’s Studies conference on Sunday 19th of June (more details to follow). Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words and a short biography of no more than 50 words to Leslie Burton and Scotty Walsh at Please include your department or affiliation and any access and equipment requirements.

The deadline for proposal submission is Friday 4th March 2016.

Please direct enquiries to conference organizers, Leslie Burton and Scotty Walsh, at

Further details will be posted to the conference webpage: