Upcoming event: ‘Back to the USSR? Drama and Theatre in Putin’s Russia’ – Wolfson, Oxford, 7-8 November 2014

‘Back to the USSR? Drama and Theatre in Putin’s Russia’: A Workshop on 21st-century Russian theatre

Wolfson College, University of Oxford, 7-8 November 2014

Russian theatre in the 21st century has been notable for its innovative stagings of texts which have ranged far beyond the conventional language and forms of Russian drama. But many of these achievements are now coming under threat in the recent atmosphere of renewed controls over cultural life. In Britain theatre companies such as the Royal Court, the RSC and Sputnik have been following these experiments, and have developed translated versions and stagings suitable for audiences unfamiliar with Russian culture and politics.

The purpose of this workshop is to bring theatre practitioners (playwrights, directors and critics) from Russia and from Britain together with academics, to discuss the ways in which Russian theatre has evolved in recent years, the difficulties it currently faces, and the challenges British companies confront when they stage contemporary Russian plays.

In keeping with the practical spirit of this event, the main focus will be on staged readings and the discussion of plays including Grandchildren by Mikhail Kaluzhsky and Aleksandra Polivanova, which is being adapted in association with Noah Birksted-Breen by the Theatre Royal Plymouth, and new works which are being developed during 2014 by Natal’ia Vorozhbit, Mikhail Durnenkov and Iury Klavdiev, together with Nicola McCartney, for Glasgow’s A Play, a Pie and a Pint Theatre. Alongside the specific focus on these texts, we will also be holding round-table debates about the content, form and language of Russian drama, and the challenges facing Russian theatres today.

If you would like to be kept informed about our plans, or might be interested in attending this event, please contact Julie Curtis (julie.curtis@wolfson.ox.ac.uk).

Workshop organisers:

Julie Curtis * Noah Birksted-Breen * Sasha Dugdale * Philip Bullock