ADSA 2016 Conference CfP Resilience: Revive, Restore, Reconnect

24 November, 2015

The next Australasian Association for Theatre, Drama and Performance Studies Conference will be ‘Resilience: Revive, Restore, Reconnect’ at the University of Southern Queensland.


Depending upon whether you are thinking of the Borg from Star Trek or the Vogon from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the old saying goes ‘Resistance is futile/useless’. Sometimes it is best to adapt, revise, regroup, move, bend, or change rather than resist. To remain relevant, vital and strong resilience is important. Resilience enables us to hang in there, to recover quickly, to rebuild and thrive.

Sometimes the focus of our art/research/educational practices/sector is building resilience in others.

Sometimes it is important to focus on building resilience within ourselves as individuals or in our communities of practice. Resilience implies a source of compression, a passage of time, and a process (or an innate ability) to spring back to a (positive) “normal” state.

The norm may now be at a point further along in our development or could be from times past when the trend cycle returns us to once-popular ideas, places, artworks and artists ready for restoration and/or reconnection. This theme complements that of ADSA’s 2014 Conference: “Restoring Balance” offering those that wish to a chance to revive, restore, and reconnect with those conversations.

It is also hoped that the Resilience theme provides new scope to be interpreted afresh and ADSA members are invited to respond to the theme in relation to theatre, drama and performance broadly.

Interpretations of the theme might include:

  • Particular opportunities and threats to the resilience of performance practice, research or pedagogy.
  • Which forms/genres of theatre practice/research/education are the most resilient? How is their resilience useful/harmful?
  • Application of performance to build resilience in others, including but not limited to, recovery from trauma and disaster.
  • Performance of everyday life.
  • The regional experience and the requirement for resilience.
  • Resilience success stories.
  • What in our field is (over)due for revival? If revived, how can we enhance its resilience this time around?
  • What marks something as resilient enough to be worthy of remounting/reviving/restoring?
  • Building resilience in individual practitioners and communities of practice:
  • What are the compressive stresses?
  • Which processes help us “spring back”
  • What does a positive normal state look like?


Please submit a 300 word abstract of your presentation and a 150 word biography for each presenter by Friday 4 December 2015. We welcome abstracts for papers, performances, panels or other presentation formats.

Please send your abstracts or any enquiries to the conference convenors Rebecca Scollen and Michael Smalley at:

Check the conference website for further updates.


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