“What Is Dramaturgy?”   

Stratford Festival, Ontario, Canada, July 23, 2023   :::    YouTube

Video on YouTube ::: Table of Contents

  • 01:33 What is dramaturgy?
  • 01:42 Origin of dramaturgy in eighteenth-century Germany
  • 02:49 Dramaturgy in the twenty-first century
  • 03:02 The concept of performativity as a linguistic function
  • 03:59 What are speech acts
  • 05:00 Performativity versus Performance
  • 06:29 Gender and Twelfth Night as Case Study
  • 11:01 Traditional dramaturgy misunderstands transgender characters as “cross-dressers”
  • 11:45 Productions of As You Like It and Hamlet that are rethinking gender
  • 13:38 The importance of dramaturgy
  • 15:08 Conclusion: Dramaturgy changes our understanding of words on stage

What is Shakespearean dramaturgy? Alexa Alice Joubin spoke at Canada’s Stratford Festival as part of the CBC Ideas Week, the Meighen Forum, and the new Forum Academy Series.

     This 15-minute illustrated lecture

  • contrasts eighteenth-century and twenty-firstcentury notions of dramaturgy
  • explains the critical concepts of speech acts and performativity which is the core of dramaturgy
  • offers Twelfth Night as a case study in gender and dramaturgy

     Shew argues that traditional dramaturgy often misunderstood transgender characters, such as Viola, as “crossdressers.” Once we understand the inherent performativity of all speech acts and all dramatic dialogues, we will be able to re-read plays such as Twelfth Night as a gender non-binary story.

     Text alone does not encompass everything words connote. Dramaturgy counters the text-centric bias that regards gender practices as fixed. Dramaturgy reveals that words as both a spatial and temporal concept and adds nuances to the meanings of the physicality of theatre-making. Joubin shows why everyone needs dramaturgy in their life!

     The presentation is now available on YouTube.

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