Advertisement

Approaches to “Audience-Centered” Performance: Designing Interaction for the iGeneration

  • William W. LewisEmail author
Chapter
  • 147 Downloads

Abstract

Contemporary media users—specifically iGen students, born in the 1990s through 2010 —see and operate with(in) the world in a fundamentally different manner than those that came only a decade before. In twenty-first-century techno-culture, the pervasive influence of the Internet accessed through the medium of smart devices makes constant multitasking and direct interaction necessary for effective learning in iGen students. These students have adapted their way of seeing and interacting to a media-saturated environment where they are connected to multiple times, places, and things simultaneously. Teachers of contemporary theatre practice should understand this change as an epistemological shift, which also impacts what iGen students expect from theatre. This chapter argues for a new direction towards thinking through digital paradigms to reassemble what theatre is and what it will be for today’s and tomorrow’s students. The constant interactive nature of these students’ digital lives requires that educators understand new ways of teaching theatre creation when considering audiences of the future.

A starting point for developing pedagogical tools that engage students in the process of interactive theatre-making is to examine existing frameworks and methodologies for implementing interaction developed in technology and games studies. Fundamentals of interaction design from these fields are crucial to understand when teaching interactive theatre for digital natives. In interactive theatre, the audience becomes the center of the performance as participant, observer, and author, thereby changing the focus of theatrical storytelling and performance from making something seen into something experienced.

Keywords

Digital Paradigm Theatrical Storytelling Theatre Makers Canonical Trajectory Performed Experiment Design 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Adams, Matt. 2016. In Conversation with … Blast Theory’s Matt Adams. Presentation at Roundhouse Cultural Center. London, UK, June 10.Google Scholar
  2. Benford, Steve, and Gabriella Giannachi. 2011. Performing Mixed Reality. Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  3. Blast Theory. 2016. Operation Black Antler. Blast Theory. http://www.blasttheory.co.uk/projects/operation-black-antler/. Accessed 12 May 2017.
  4. ———. 2017. Our History and Approach. Blast Theory. http://www.blasttheory.co.uk/our-history-approach/. Accessed 9 Aug 2017.
  5. Carr, Nicholas G. 2010. The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains. New York: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  6. Edmonds, Ernest. 2010. The Art of Interaction. Digital Creativity 21 (4): 257–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Farman, Jason. 2012. Mobile Interface Theory: Embodied Space and Locative Media. New York: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Hayles, N. Katherine. 2012. How We Think: Digital Media and Contemporary Technogenesis. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. ———. 2016. Posthuman Cognition: The Power of the Cognitive Nonconscious. Keynote Speech at Technology & The Human: Rethinking Posthumanism Symposium, Waltham, MA, April 1.Google Scholar
  10. Homan, Daniel, and Sidney Homan. 2014. The Interactive Theatre of Video Games: The Gamer as Playwright, Director and Actor. Comparative Drama 48 (1 & 2): 169–186.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Lewis, William W. 2017. Performing ‘Posthuman’ Spectatorship: Digital Proximity and Variable Agencies. Performance Research 22 (3): 8–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Lewis, William W., and Sarah Johnson. 2017. Theatrical Reception and the Formation of Twenty-First-Century Perception: A Case Study for the iGeneration. Theatre Topics 27 (2): 113–126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Pew Research Center. 2016. Mobile Fact Sheet. Pew Research Center. www.pewinternet.org/facts-sheet/mobile/. Accessed 1 June 2017.
  14. Rosen, Larry. 2010. Rewired: Understanding the iGeneration and the Way They Learn. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  15. Salen, Katie, and Eric Zimmerman. 2004. Rules of Play: Games Design Fundamentals. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  16. Spence, Jocelyn. 2016. Performative Experience Design. Cham: Springer International Publishing.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Spence, Jocelyn, David Frolich, and Stuart Andrews. 2013. Performative Experience Design: Where Autobiographical Performance and Human-Computer Interaction Meet. Digital Creativity 24 (2): 96–11.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Colorado BoulderBoulderUSA

Personalised recommendations