Creating Verbatim Theatre from Oral Histories

Clare Summerskill

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Both oral history and verbatim theatre rely upon the spoken word, and both practices frequently seek testimonies from members of marginalised, vulnerable or previously silenced populations which are then documented, either in the form of oral recordings and interview transcripts, or by the inclusion of interview excerpts within a script.
This book consists of four parts: the first section introduces verbatim theatre history and related practices and examines the close connections between theatre created from interviews and oral history practice; the second section discusses ethical considerations in verbatim theatre processes; the third provides step-by-step guidance on how to create a piece of verbatim theatre; and the fourth offers detailed examples of the work of verbatim theatre practitioners around the world.
The premise behind this book lies in the author’s understanding that, since oral history and verbatim theatre are such closely related disciplines, they have much to teach each other. Verbatim theatre makers can enhance their own practices by turning to existing debates within oral history – particularly around the interview and feedback processes – and oral historians are invited to look to verbatim theatre as a means of dispersing interview content beyond the archive.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAbigdon
Number of pages202
ISBN (Print)9780367181475
Publication statusPublished - 21 Sept 2020

Publication series

NamePractising Oral History


  • Oral History. Verbatim Theatre.

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