Researchers across the School of Fine and Performing Arts consider the impact of their work. Two recent case studies centre around the work of Ananda Breed, and of Michael Pinchbeck.
Ananda Breed has worked both nationally and internationally as an applied performance practitioner and researcher, contributing to several important projects exploring the relationship between participatory art and peacebuilding processes. Serving as Co-Investigator of £2M AHRC GCRF Network Plus ‘Changing the Story: building inclusive societies with and for young people in 5 post conflict countries’, Breed implemented a critical review pilot project entitled ‘Mobile Arts for Peace’ (MAP) working with partners University of Leeds, Rwanda Education Board (REB), and the Institute of Research and Dialogue for Peace (IRDP); alongside five schools in the Eastern Province. This project received £100,000 AHRC GCRF Follow On Impact funding for project ‘Ubwuzu: Shaping the Rwandan National Curriculum through Arts’ to extend the initial pilot project to the other four provinces (Western, Northern, Southern, Kigali) reaching 25 schools in total (2018-20). In January 2020, Breed was awarded as Principal Investigator of a £2M AHRC GCRF Network Plus project to extend her research and impact to three additional countries including Kyrgyzstan, Indonesia and Nepal. The AHRC GCRF Network Plus project ‘Mobile Arts for Peace: Informing the National Curriculum and Youth Policy for Peacebuilding in Kyrgyzstan, Rwanda, Indonesia, and Nepal’ (2020-24) included 8 Co-Investigators and 22 partnering organisations.
Find out more about Mobile Arts for Peace.
Michael Pinchbeck produced Bolero as part of a practice-as-research enquiry into the dramaturgy of music and conflict. The research proposed that Ravel’s music was significantly changed due to his experience of World War One. Owing to this context and its subsequent performance histories (ballet, concert, ice dance etc.) parallel research enquiries emerged into post-conflict theatre and commemoration. The research imperative was framed by Ravel’s instruction to conductors to ‘follow the score’ and the work ‘biographises’ the piece of music, Bolero. Using verbatim text, devising techniques and archival research, the body of work advances Rebstock and Roesner’s Composed Theatre (2013) by using music to structure theatre in both form and content, to propose a ‘post-music theatre’. The project’s dramaturgy followed Barba’s notion of ‘weaving together’ found and fictional texts about Ravel’s music to create a biography of the original composition fused with the performers’ ‘auto-dramaturgy’ of surviving conflict. A project spanning the UK, Germany and Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bolero created partnerships between the Balkans and the UK and led to youth theatres being set up in Bosnia and Kosovo. The project lasted four years and its impact is still being felt in the Balkan region today.