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The nature of communication between scenography and its audiences

By Joslin McKinney


This practice-based study uses a series of three scenographic performances to investigate the nature of communication between scenography and audience. Structured using iterative cycles of action and reflection, the\ud trajectory of the three performances begins by drawing on recognisably mainstream professional practice (The General's Daughter), through a scenographic experiment aimed specifically at enfolding the audience (Homesick) to engaging and involving the audience through scenography and\ud creating a new form of performance (Forest Floor).\ud \ud Although the potential impact of scenography has long been recognised in professional theatre practice, this is the first piece of practice-based research which examines the particular contribution of the scenographic and the way it\ud works on its audiences. Scenography is inseparable from the performance event yet its particular material qualities draw on languages of the stage that appear to speak simultaneously with, but separately from, the textual and the gestural. This investigation focuses on the visual, spatial and somatosensory dimensions of scenography and on ways of capturing and theorising the experience of viewing scenography.\ud \ud The study shows that audience members register scenography as a multisensory experience. The polysemous nature of scenography allows it to become a site for imaginative projections, where audiences draw on their own feelings, experiences and their creativity leading to unique responses within the collective experience of a scenographically-crafted performance environment. I propose that scenography works as an agent of exchange, provoking intersections of imagination where individuals can reflect on and playfully explore propositions of what it means to be in the world. This leads to the instigation of a new form of scenographic performance and an expanded view of the creative implication of audiences

Publisher: Performance and Cultural Industries (Leeds)
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:etheses.whiterose.ac.uk:350

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