TOP STORY: Professor Nicolas Whybrow is Retiring
Professor Nicolas Whybrow is retiring early at the end of October 2020 owing to recent ill health. He is a long-time member of Theatre and Performance Studies at Warwick, joining in February 2004. A former Head of School (2014-2017), Nicolas taught across a range of modules, most notably Performance and the Contemporary City and Live Art and Performance. In 2010 he won the Warwick Award for Teaching Excellence.
Nicolas played a leading role in the University’s research culture, being appointed as thematic lead for two of its GRPs, Sustainable Cities and Connecting Cultures. In 2017-2020 he was the PI on a 3-year AHRC-funded practice-as-research project entitled Sensing the City, which culminated in a multi-medial exhibition at the Herbert Art Gallery, Coventry and an edited book, Urban Sensographies (2021). Meanwhile, his book Contemporary Art Biennials in Europe: the Work of Art in the Complex City appeared in 2020.
Further details about Nicolas are available on his staff profile on the Theatre and Performance Studies website. Happily, he retains his connection to the University as Professor Emeritus.
Funding Success with Coventry City of Culture - “I don’t want your hope, I want your action”
Together with Dr Rachel Turner King (Principal Investigator, Education) and Professor David Mond (Maths and Global Sustainable Development), Dr Bobby Smith (Theatre and Performance Studies) has been awarded Coventry City of Culture funding for the project “I don’t want your hope, I want your action”: exploring youth eco-citizenship through verbatim theatre and digital ethnography in the city.
This participatory project, which will involve work with local young people, seeks to investigate how young people understand the relationships between the environment and their lives, and what they currently know about the climate crisis. Young people will become both theatre makers and ethnographic researchers, undertaking a range of interviews and engaging in discussions between themselves and with other members of their local community to investigate the climate crisis.
Drawing on the interdisciplinary background of the team, an applied theatre approach will enable open discussion around these issues and provide an opportunity for young people to explore the climate crisis creatively, and to perform their findings and views to audiences.
This project is a component of a larger international, multi-sited ethnographic study led by Professor Kathleen Gallagher (University of Toronto) entitled Global Youth (Digital) Citizen-Artists and their Publics: Performing for Socio-Ecological Justice. The shorthand for this project is Audacious Citizenship, and it will run 2019-2024. The project involves work taking place in Canada, Columbia, Greece, India and Taiwan, as well as in Coventry. Participants will therefore be given opportunities to connect globally on this important issue.
The City of Culture funding acts as seed funding, helping to launch the Coventry-based aspect of the project, with a view to apply for further funding in 2020/2021.
More news to come soon!