Dr Bryce Lease

Personal profile

I joined the Drama Department at Royal Holloway in 2013, having taught previously at the Universities of Bristol and Exeter. Memberships include Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA), American Society for Theater Research (ASTR), African Theatre Association (AfTA), Performance Studies international (PSi) and I am a founding member of the Queer Futures Working Group within the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR). My writings on contemporary international performance have been published in The Drama Review (TDR)Contemporary Theatre Review (CTR), Theatre Research International (TRI), Theatre Journal, European Stages and New Theatre Quarterly (NTQ). My research has been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), the British Academy, the Standing Conference of University Drama Departments (SCUDD) and the Brown International Advanced Research Institute (BIARI). As well as being an advisory board member for European Stages, I am Assisstnat Editor for the Routledge journal Contemporary Theatre Review, Subject Editor for European and South African Theatre/Performance and board member for the Routledge Performance Archive, co-convener of the London Theatre Seminar, and a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Peer Review College. I am convener of the MA Theatre Directing with Katie Mitchell, commencing in summer 2017.  

Overarching themes that frame my research interests are the interconnections between cultural memory, difficult histories, politics, nascent democracies, nationalism, counterpublics, gender, sexuality and cultural geography. I have published numerous articles on Polish theatre, and my recent monograph, After '89: Polish Theatre and the Political, interrogates the rebirth of the theatre as a site of public intervention and social criticism since the establishment of pluralistic democracy. In 2013-15, I was Primary Investigator (PI) on the AHRC-funded project, Sequins, Self & Struggle: Performing and Archiving Sex, Place and Class in Pageant Competitions in Cape Town. This project was a collaboration among the Departments of Drama at RHUL and QMUL (UK), The Centre for Curating the Archive and the Centre for African Studies at the University of Cape Town (South Africa), Africana Studies at Brown University (US) and the District 6 Museum. The project received international media coverage and resulted in several exhibitions in Cape Town and London, two documentaries, a symposium and curated panel on gay rights for the South Bank Centre’s Mandela Weekend, and a digital archive hosted by the University of Cape Town. Nadia Davids (Co-I) and I are currently guest editing a special issue of Safundi. The Journal of South African and American Studies, ‘Performing and Archiving Queer Publics in South Africa’. Please find more information on the project on our website: http://sequins-self-struggle.co.uk/

I would welcome research students interested in any of the fields mentioned above.

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