Chair of Department's Welcome

Dr Amanda Card

One of the first questions most people ask is: What is Performance Studies? From Brecht to Beyoncé, hip hop to Hitler, we study the making, presentation and witnessing of performance - in all the usual, wonderful and weird places it occurs. We look at play texts, political rallies, theories of acting and dancing bodies for what their study can help us understand about a culture, a people and a time. We engage with contemporary performing artists – watching what they do and asking how and why they do it, and we look at the world through the lens of performance, exploring what performance theory can reveal about the way we live, what we believe and why we believe it. Performance Studies is a rigorous discipline. It gives you the tools to examine and explain the workings of your world, and the worlds of others, in interesting ways; and, as a by product of our fascination with performance and all things performative, we tend to have a lot of fun along the way.