Miss Cara Gray

Supervised by

Research interests

'A Study of Amateur Theatre: Making and Making-Do'

My PhD offers an analysis of the affective communities of amateur theatre by investigating the often hidden spaces and processes that are involved in making theatre. The study is motivated by the need to investigate amateur dramatics, an activity deeply valued by its participants yet one that has been long overlooked by the academy. Through my (visual) ethnographic research, conducted whilst set building with the Settlement Players of Letchworth Garden City, my thesis analyses amateur dramatics as craft and creative practice, placing focus on the people involved in backstage roles such as set builders/designers and costumers.  

My PhD contributes to the wider AHRC funded project 'Amateur Dramatics: Crafting Communities in Time and Space': http://amateurdramaresearch.com/. As part of the Connected Communities Scheme, the project looks to explore what role amateur theatre plays in constructing and sustaining communities.

Personal profile

I am interested in the geographies of amateur creativity. Specifically, I work with amateur theatre-makers to investigate the spaces and processes of their craft. I have an MA in Cultural Geography from Royal Holloway, University of London, and a BA in Geography from the University of Exeter (Cornwall Campus). I am supervised by Professor Helen Nicholson (Drama and Theatre) and advised by Professor David Gilbert (Geography).


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