Ms Clare Summerskill

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Personal profile

Clare Summerskill is researching a PhD at Royal Holloway University of London about the role of a contributor in verbatim theatre. She is also a playwright and a performer, and has published works concerning oral histories of older LGBT people, the creation of verbatim theatre from interviews with mental health service users, and her own plays, Hearing Voices, and Rights of Passage.

Research interests

Clare Summerskill is researching the role, value, and experience of a contributor in verbatim theatre processes. One of the themes that she is addressing in this work is the connection between verbatim theatre and oral history. Another area of her work concerns training approaches and techniques employed in the gathering of oral histories from people from marginalised communities. She is also interested in the role of a contributor in the creation of verbatim plays addressing asylum issues - one focus of this work being on LGBT asylum seekers. 

Other work

Clare is currently working as an outreach oral historian at London Metropolitan Archives, involved in a project entitled SPEAK OUT (funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund), gathering oral histories from older LGBT people in London. She is the Chair of the newly-formed LGBTQ Special Interest Group in the Oral History Society. She gives presentational talks about her own verbatim theatre projects on issues such as: Provision of care for older LGBT people; LGBT History; Experiences of mental health service users; LGBT asylum seekers in the UK. She is Artistic Director of Artemis Theatre Company, which recently toured Clare's play Rights of Passage, about LGBT Asylum seekers, around the country (funded by the Arts Council).

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