Community Engagement

Theatre and Performance Studies has many significant relationships with artists and arts organisations. We work with artists on new projects, provide commentary and consultation, and contribute to public forums in the arts industry.

We have strong relationships with many organisations including: Belvoir Street Theatre, Critical Path, Force Majeure, Griffin Theatre, The Sue Healey Company, NIDA, Performance Space at CarriageWorks, Performing Lines, Playwriting Australia, The Studio at Sydney Opera House, Sydney Dance Company, Sydney Theatre Company, Urban Theatre Projects, RealTime Magazine, Arts NSW, Regional Arts NSW and the Goethe Institut.

Our academics have held high profile positions in Sydney’s performance community. We also engage in creative consultations, critiquing and dramaturgy and contribute to public dialogue about performance as curators, panelists and writers. Each of us contributes to the arts, academic and broader communities.

Read more about how the School engages with the Arts community and industry here.


Professor Edward Scheer is a founding editor of Performance Paradigm. He was chairman of the board of directors of the Performance Space in Sydney and the first Australian to be elected president of Performance Studies International, the largest conference and research network in performance studies in the world. He has also collaborated with the Kaldor Public Art Projects and the Sydney Biennale. He is currently on the Board of UNSW iCinema Centre for Interactive Cinema Research and a member of the ARC College of Experts.

Dr Erin Brannigan was founding director and curator of the ReelDance Festival, which ran from 2000 to 2012. More recently, she collaborated with the Art Gallery of NSW to present the symposium ‘Choreography in the Gallery’ as part of the Sydney Biennale in 2016. She has been reviewing for RealTime since 2001.

Dr Meg Mumford co-organised and participated in public panels about staging ‘real people’ that were hosted by the Goethe-Institut in Sydney and Melbourne (2012). The panels brought together local theatre-makers and cultural critics, with practitioners from Berlin-based Rimini Protokoll. She is currently a member of the International Brecht Society and on the editorial board for the journal The Brecht Yearbook. She is also a member of the International Federation for Theatre Research, and is the Asia-Pacific Book Reviews Editor for Theatre Research International.

Dr Bryoni Trezise has worked as a dramaturge on projects with key Australian artists Regina Heilmann, Nikki Heywood and Nigel Kellaway. She sat on the board of the performance company Version 1.0. She has been reviewing for RealTime since 2004.

Dr Theron Schmidt has worked as a collaborative artist with companies such as Goat Island, Chris Goode & Company, Nicola Conibere, and Apocryphal Theatre, and has presented performance-lectures and performance writing in a number of contexts and festivals. In partnership with international festivals, he has facilitated innovative critical writing projects that foster interaction between artists, scholars, and publics, including the SPILL Festival of Performance (London), the Festival of Live Art (Melbourne), and Performance Saga (Bern). He is a founding co-convener of the international Performance Philosophy research network, co-editor of Performance Philosophy, assistant editor of Contemporary Theatre Review, and also sits on the editorial board of Performance Research, the International Journal of Screendance, and Akda:The Asian Journal of Literature, Culture, Performance.

Dr Caroline Wake has worked as online producer and reviewer for RealTime arts magazine since 2007. More recently, she has appeared on panels with colleagues at Kaldor Public Art Project and Sydney Biennale events. She is deputy editor of Performance Paradigm and board member of Performance Studies International.

Dr Jonathan Bollen coordinated research for AusStage, the online resource for researching Australian performance, from 2006 to 2013. He was president of the Australasian Association for Theatre and Performance Studies from 2006 to 2008. He is currently a member of the International Federation for Theatre Research and contributes to the Popular Entertainments working group. He is a member of the editorial panel for About Performance.

Clare Grant, Honorary Lecturer, regularly works as dramaturge with emerging artists (such as Post) and consults for companies such as PACT Centre for Emerging Artists and Shopfront Theatre. She is a regular contributor to creative development processes within the contemporary performance field.

John McCallum, Honorary Senior Lecturer, is an award-winning and the longest serving theatre critic in Australia. He is an occasional critic on ABC radio and principal Sydney theatre reviewer for The Australian.

Dr John Golder, Visiting Senior Research Fellow, has acted as editor of Currency House’s Platform Papers, a quarterly publication addressing pressing issues affecting the health of the contemporary performing arts and arts industry.


Our staff also contribute to several programs that link the work of the university with the broader NSW community including:

  • UNSW Nura Gilli Winter School - a program introducing Indigenous high school students to university life. The School of the Arts and Media contribution to this program was initiated by Meg Mumford and Su Goldfish (UNSW Creative Practice Lab) and TPS staff continue to be actively involved as conveners and teachers.
  • Supporting our students to be active participants in performance programs at PACT Centre for Emerging Artists and Shopfront Theatre.