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Quantum Theatre – Science and Contemporary Performance

Quantum Theatre – Science and Contemporary Performance

Paul Johnson


“Quantum Theatre” uses the science of quantum mechanics to construct a rigorous framework for examining performance practice and the theatrical event, and live performance as a means of exploring the implications of quantum mechanics. Key ideas from physics are used to develop an interdisciplinary approach to writing about the work of a number of British theatre practitioners in terms of identity, observation and play. What this type of analysis does is enable an examination of aspects of performance that can remain hidden and so cast new light on the performance event.


This is the first study of its kind that develops such a framework for analysis of contemporary performance, and provides a coherent alternative to postmodernism as a theoretical framework for writing about performance. As such, this book develops a methodology that can be applied to a wide range of performance practices. Furthermore, it presents an analysis of the work of a number of contemporary performance makers, including Vincent Dance Theatre and Triangle Theatre.

Cambridge Scholars Publishing


Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson’s academic background is in both arts and sciences; his first degree was in Physics and Theatre Studies and his research has often explored the intersections and interactions between disciplines. He worked in Applied Theatre Research at the Centre for Applied Theatre Research at the University of Manchester, on projects investigating theatre in museums, and how performing arts can engage young people in issues around biomedical science (funded by the Wellcome Trust).


He has worked in theatre as a writer and stage director, as well as a variety of other roles from youth theatre workers to script reader for the Literary Department of the Birmingham Rep.


Paul Johnson has been an active member of SCUDD, the subject association for Drama, and was Vice-Chair from 2007 to 2010. He is on the Strategic Advisory Board of Arts Connect (the Arts Council England bridge organisation for the West Midlands), the Board of Chester Visual Arts, and is a Fellow of the RSA.

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