ATS3987 - Theories of theatre 2 - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Centre for Theatre and Performance


Professor Stacy Holman Jones

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Day)


This unit will examine three primary traditions in Contemporary Performance - Experimental Theatre, Contemporary Dance and Performance Art. The work of key practitioners and movements will be studied with an aim to establish their importance to and influence on contemporary performance practices. Ideas of avant-gardism, theatre as laboratory, physical theatre, site-based performance, and conceptual performance art will be examined and discussed.


Upon successful completion of this unit students will:

  1. Possess a broad knowledge of a range of the origins of contemporary theatre and performance traditions;
  2. Have received an introduction to the ideas of key concepts, developments and practitioners in the story of contemporary performance;
  3. Be able to demonstrate an understanding of the relevance of theories of the avant-garde to Twentieth and Twenty-First Century art practice;
  4. Be able to understand the importance of different meanings of embodiment in performance practice;
  5. Debate the key concepts in contemporary aesthetics;
  6. Be able to demonstrate a nuanced understanding of the importance of performance in the broader realm of contemporary art practice.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


Two gateway units in Theatre