Social media, audiences, and audience co-creativity in contemporary performance: Restoring balance?

Hadley, Bree J. (2014) Social media, audiences, and audience co-creativity in contemporary performance: Restoring balance? In Restoring Balance - Australasian Association for Drama, Theatre & Performance Studies Conference 2014, 23-27 June 2014, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, NZ. (Unpublished)

[img] Accepted Version (PDF 188kB)
Administrators only | Request a copy from author


Producers, technicians, performers, audiences and critics are all critical components of the performing arts ecology – critical components of an ecosystem that have to come together into some sort of productive relationship if the performing arts are to be vital, viable and successful. Different performance practices developed in different times, spaces and places do, of course, connect these players in different ways as part of their attempt to achieve their own definition of success, be it based on entertainment, educational, expression, empowerment, or something else. In some contemporary performance practices, social media platforms, applications and processes are seen to have significant potential to restore balance to the relationship between performer and audience, providing audiences with more power to participate in a performance event. In this paper, I investigate prevailing assumptions about social media’s power to democratise performance practice, or, at least, develop more co-creative performance practices in which producers, performers and audiences participate actively before, during and after the event. I focus, in particular, on the use of social media as a means of developing a participatory aesthetic in which an audience member is asked to contribute to the cast of characters, plot or progression of a performance. Although diverse – from performances streamed online, to performances that offer transmedia components the audience can use to learn more about character, context and plot online, to performances that incorporate online voting, liking or linking, to performances that unfold fully online on websites, blogs, microblogs or other social media platforms – what a lot of uses of social media in contemporary performance today share is a desire to encourage audiences to reflect on their role in making, and making meaning, of the event. In this paper I interrogate if, and if so how, this democratises or develops deeper levels of co-creativity in the relationship between producers, performers and audiences.

Impact and interest:

Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 83554
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Performing Arts, Social Media, Spectatorship
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > PERFORMING ARTS AND CREATIVE WRITING (190400) > Drama Theatre and Performance Studies (190404)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Past > Institutes > Institute for Creative Industries and Innovation
Past > Schools > School of Media, Entertainment & Creative Arts
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Bree Hadley
Deposited On: 14 Apr 2015 23:31
Last Modified: 14 Apr 2015 23:58

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page