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Drama research

Kingston drama enjoys an active research culture, driven by a close-knit, dynamic team of researchers.

The diverse research interests of our academics and students constellate around two themes:

Contemporary performance practices

  • Performance-making methodologies including acting, directing and collaboration
  • Performance and identity (national/gender/class)
  • Intermediality and interdisciplinarity

Popular performance in its historical context

  • Suburban music hall
  • 19th century musical theatre and revue

Many of our academics are also performance practitioners - actors, directors, writers - and much of our research has a strong footing in creative practice. A belief in the power of performance as a way of imagining or embodying a more socially equitable world, unites the scholarship of Kingston drama researchers.

How to apply

If you are interested in studying for a research degree, the first step is to submit your research proposal to the Research Student Co-ordinator (tel: +44 (0)20 8417 2304). Please produce your proposal using the following research proposal guidelines.

Evolving Doors

Evolving Doors

Evolving Doors

The project was created with homeless people in Guildford in March 2013.

Drama training programme

Drama training programme

Drama training programme

In January 2013, six Kingston University drama students travelled to the Dundee School of Dentistry at the University of Dundee to help deliver a training programme through theatre for health techniques. The students worked on two projects over the course of the day, working with student dentists focusing on communication training in the morning, and with professional dentists on alcohol advice training in the afternoon. The drama students worked as actors in role to simulate the real-life challenges that are often found in the context of medical treatment, playing characters ranging from heroin addicts to hairdressers.

To create roles that would be effective in the training programme, the students researched and used the different ways that patients "code" emotional responses to treatment in their physical and verbal communication, and researched and practised a reflection-in-action technique developed at the University of Bergen, Norway. The mixture of theatrical techniques with understanding of the procedures of medical consultation produced an intense focus throughout the training day, which was a real success. The students also participated in the evaluation of the project, and further research into the usefulness of theatre strategies in medical training will be disseminated and developed through future partnership projects between Kingston University drama and the Dundee School of Dentistry.

Students involved: Grace King, Ben Carlin, Natalie Forsythe, Hannah Scott, Chloe Lister, Natalie Rixon.




Bloodlines is the practice-as-research strand of the Chimera Network, a research project exploring collaborations between artists and scientists. This work is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council [grant number AH/K003518/1].

Bloodlines is a performance project that traces the microscopic drama that plays out between a serious disease and medical treatment in the human body. It draws on its makers' personal experience of leukaemia (which the composer, Milton Mermikides developed in 2005) and its treatment through intensive chemotherapy, radiotherapy and a bone marrow transplant (donated by his sister Alex Mermikides, who directed the performance). Also collaborating in the performance was Ann Van de Velde, a clinical haematologist involved in the care and treatment of blood disorders such as leukaemia and Anna Tanczos, a digital artist specialising in science communication. Bloodlines premiered at the Science Museum's Dana Centre in July 2013.

Current projects

  • A ten-day workshop on devising with Croatian dramaturg Marin Blazevic
  • Pantomime project with the Hackney Empire
  • A book on the history of black and Asian theatre in Britain

Department of Performing Arts

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
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