Call for Papers: The S-Word, 2024

Type of post: Association news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Jonathan W. Marshall
Status: Current
Date Posted: Mon, 26 Jun 2023

Call for Papers: The S-Word, 2024

Stand in Place / Stanislavsky and Place

4 — 6 April 2024
WAAPA, Edith Cowan University
Perth/Boorloo, Western Australia

Submissions due: 15 September 2023.
Submissions via: email to

Stanislavsky was clear that the actor must take their place in the theatre. His writings are full of injunctions to reflexively situate oneself with respect to the stage, set, actors, objectives, and so on. Echoing Stanislavski’s conceptual and physical praxis, modernist performance makers such as Meyerhold and Schlemmer went on to postulate that the actor brought their own sense of place onto the stage, shaping the performance space and enabling performers to align themselves, their attention, and their movements to a range of axial placements and combinations, as in Laban’s kinesphere. Later theatre makers as varied as Declan Donnellan and Suzuki Tadashi have suggested that the theatre is a place of life-and-death struggle, a site where a battle for survival is conducted by both characters and the actors themselves.

The act of the performer taking their place in their body in the theatre developed in parallel to the importance of ‘place’ in the world of the playwright and in the places represented on stage. Stanislavski’s not always happy peer, Anton Chekhov, has been described as the “first environmental playwright,” with scripts such as Uncle Vanya (1898) and The Cherry Orchard (1904) being concerned with the places wherein they are set, with the environmental and socio-political conditions and histories etched across their landscapes. Interestingly, there is a rich tradition of Australian plays which are strongly connected to place, No Sugar (Jack Davis, 1985), Cloudstreet (Nick Enright and Justin Monjo, 1998, after the novel by Tim Winton), When the Rain Stops Falling (Andrew Bovell, 2008), and more recently, City of Gold (Meyne Wyatt, 2019). 

For the forthcoming Stanislavsky and Place symposium, we call for submissions for academic papers, artist presentations, and panels, which consider the places of theatre arising from or existing alongside Stanislavskian performance and acting praxis. We invite you to Stand in Place with us, on Whadjuk Noongar Boodja/Country, here at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Edith Cowan University, Perth/Boorloo, and interact with this place, as you tell us about your places.

Papers will be 20 minutes in length, workshop/artistic presentations 40 minutes and panels a combined total of 60 minutes in length. Selected papers will be considered for publication in our journal, Stanislavski Studies, and material generated by this event will form the basis of a title in the book series, Stanislavsky And... (published by Routledge, Taylor & Francis).

Topic areas could include (but are not limited to):
  1. Performance and theatre in relation to ideas of being in place and being out of place
  2. Stanislavskian performance in your place (what changes with/in it?) 
  3. Placemaking and theatre making 
  4. Futures of Eco dramaturgy and theatre form
  5. Decolonisation strategies and First Nation knowledge of place and performance 
  6. Beyond Stanislavski, extending his ideas in concepts of place/space 
  7. Training in relation to ideas of place including but not limited to intercultural/transcultural form and practice
  8. Site specific and place specific performance modes in relationship to realism, Stanislavsky and actor and audience relationship
  9. Movement, body weather and other performance modalities and training methodologies.
We are very excited to announce that Professor Jonathan Pitches from the University of Leeds (UK) will be a keynote speaker presenting on mountainous opportunities: interrogating place in ritual, theatre, and performance training. More announcements on additional keynote presenters to follow.

Please send an abstract of no more than 250 words, with presentation type, to by 15 September, 2023. Notification of acceptance will be in late October. Early bird registration will be in December 2023 and follow up registration in January 2024. All enquiries to Renee Newman ( or Jonathan W Marshall (