The Research Center
Founded in August 2008, the International Research Center investigates the interweaving of performance cultures and of cultures in performance in the broadest sense. The Center is connected to the Freie Universität Berlin’s Department for Theatre Studies and is thus part of the university. However, funding is provided by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, allowing us to annually invite up to ten Fellows from across the globe.
Interweaving performance cultures primarily refers to all those processes and phenomena in which different cultures meet through performance: the juxtaposition of divergent performance styles and other forms of expression on stage; working groups and theatre or dance companies that are culturally heterogeneous in composition; global circulation of procedures; transnational networks of production; and similar conditions of presentation taking place around the world.
We do not expect these global exchanges to contribute to the homogenization of cultures. Instead we assume that the process of diversification will be enhanced through these encounters.
Furthermore, these practices and innovative modes of presentation explicitly refer to a political and social dimension. Questions of economic power, migration and identity politics, strategies of appropriation and translation – both from a contemporary and historical perspective – are inextricably linked to processes of interweaving. It is this very fusion of the aesthetic with the social and political realm that is of particular interest to us.
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