[EXTENDED DEADLINE] IFTR Working Group "Performance and Disability"

04 February, 2015


[NEW DEADLINE: 15 February]



Performance & Disability Working Group

FIRT/IFTR 2015, University of Hyderabad, India

5-10 July 2015


Deadline for proposals: 15th of February, 2015


The Performance and Disability Working Group of the International Federation of Theatre Research is soliciting paper proposals for our Working Group from any area of performance studies that intersects with disability studies. We welcome perspectives from practice, history or theory in any field or discipline. The goal of this group is to have an international dialogue regarding disability and performance and to share scholarly work and best practices from around the world – traditions, conventions and demonstrations of how diverse physical, sensorial, developmental and psychological abilities manifest in all areas of performance.


In 2015, participants are invited to orient their contributions of any format towards the theme:



Performance, theatre, and dance involving disabled performers interacts with several factors: The politics of traditions, aesthetic norms or constraints, structural conditions in a performing arts system, and the societal, legal, political, and cultural status of disability. These conditions determine the ability of disabled performers to participate in performing arts practice. At the same time, disability performance reveals invisible rules inside the theater and the society.

In 2015, the Working Group explores the interweaving actions between disability performance, the performing arts system, and different perceptions of disability around the world. The presentations may focus on specific phenomenon and demonstrations of disability performance in regional and national contexts, involving disabled performers or spectators.


Some aspects are (but not limited to):

- Intersections of disability performance with local theatre/performance/dance traditions

- Intersections of disability with other categories (for example race/ gender) in performing arts practices

- Intersections of disability performance and aesthetic norms and rules inside the theatre

- Intersections of disability performance and disability as a legal, societal, political, and cultural category



To submit abstracts for papers to be presented in the “Performance & Disabilty” Working Group for 2015 Conference, you must upload your 300 word abstract along with a short bio of 50 words (max) by 15 February 2015 through the link to the submission page on the Cambridge Journals Online website and specify which Working Group you are interested in applying for. If you are ready to send your abstract, please click here. You will be taken to the Cambridge Journals Online website where you will be prompted to join IFTR or renew your membership. After this you’ll be taken to the abstract submission form.


We welcome 20-minute presentations of any format. We will circulate our papers and presentation materials in advance in order to enable a deeper discussion. The deadline for submitting the presentations is 30 May 2015.



Please note that there are three options for submitting an abstract:

  1. Submit to the Performance and Disability Working Group (following the guidelines above).
  2. Submit to the general congress (following the guidelines on the IFTR site; please note the conference theme is distinct from the CFP for our Working Group).
  3. Submit to the New Scholars Forum (following their guidelines).


You can only submit one proposal and must elect from the three options above. If you prefer to present in the General Panel or New Scholars Forum, you are still welcome to participate in the Working Group sessions -- just write an email to the conveners expressing your interest in joining the Working Group.



For information about the general conference, fees, and accommodation, check the IFTR conference website: http://www.iftr2015hyd.in/

For information on the IFTR-FIRT, please check their website: http://www.firt-iftr.org


If you have any questions about the Working Group, please contact the conveners:

- Yvonne Schmidt:  yvonne.schmidt@zhdk.ch

- Mark Swetz:  mark.swetz@humboldt.edu


Join the mailing list of the IFTR-FIRT Working Group:https://listserv.unibe.ch/mailman/listinfo/performance-disability.itw


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/390883004312783/ [search for: IFTR Performance and Disability WG] 

Blog: http://performancedisability.tumblr.com/



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