null Call For Papers: The Autumn Day of the Theatre Research Society DL 3rd Oct

The Autumn Day of the Theatre Research Society will be held on Friday, 18 November 2016 at the Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki in collaboration with the ArtsEqual Research Initiative. The title of the day is "Applied Theatre, Dance and Performance in Hybrid Contexts".

The purpose of the Theatre Research Society is to create conditions for cutting-edge scientific and artistic discussion among people and organizations researching performing arts in Finland. We invite experts in applied theatre, dance and performance as well as art researchers interested in the field to discuss the topic at the seminar aimed at maintaining dialogue between representatives of different approaches to theatre and dance research.

In all realms of performing arts, so-called applied forms have emerged to challenge the autonomous conception of arts and the art scene. Among the areas where applied arts have been utilized most extensively are education, the care sector, enhancement of social participation, projects relating to social work, organizational development, work counseling, and wellbeing at work. Moreover, applied forms have been articulated explicitly as a means to enable equal opportunities.

Performances – even when located into the field of art – can also have particular features that may be identified as social, such as a process-like nature, which for its own part influences the ways in which the offered art work is experienced and how it engages people to participate and is received. This especially draws interest to the roles of the participants in events, to how they, in their full diversity, are defined and what kind of situational agreements are required of the people present. Can the processes of applied arts have outside viewers or only creators, makers and participants?

The term hybrid environment refers to social environments (Bhabha 1994) that emerge from encounters between different cultures. Hulme, Cracknell and Owens (2009) regard a hybrid environment as a social space where people of different backgrounds move from reflective dialogue to generative dialogue and where the use of (applied) arts can stimulate the emergence of social environments.

What forms does the “click society” – the social media of quick and immediate “sharing” – open up for art-based methods? Are we talking about a new framework of ‘hybrid’? What challenges arise in an environment where a multitude of communication means are simultaneously present?

Art-based methods have a long history, going back, even in the narrowest views, to 100 or 50 years ago. The relationship between these methods and the established forms of applied arts to their “mother arts” and the esthetic changes therein has been uneasy. In many of the traditions originating in the 1960s changes have already been seen in the principal premises of activities, evaluation and valuation; in the ethical and esthetic preferences.

We welcome papers and discussion regarding this general problem setting. In papers presenting individual projects, topics are expected to be linked to broader frames of reference.

The length of a presentation should be 20-30 minutes, depending on the final number of papers, which would leave 10-15 minutes for discussion per paper. Also papers in Swedish and English can be offered.

The keynote speaker at the event is ass. prof. Struti Bala (Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Amsterdam).

You can send your abstract (max. 200 words) by 3 October 2016 to the following addresses:,, and

Please include in your proposal any technical requirements you may have. The seminar program will be announced by 15 October 2016, so we hope to receive the specified abstracts by 1 November 2016.

Location: Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki, Haapaniemenkatu 6, Helsinki, Auditorium 1

On behalf of the board the Theatre Research Society and the University of the Arts Helsinki

Pentti Paavolainen

Docent, Theatre Research (University of Helsinki), Ph.D. Chairman of the Theatre Research Society

Kai Lehikoinen

University Lecturer in Performing Arts, Ph.D.

Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki Vice Director, ArtsEqual