Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

The European Theatre Research Network is a partnership of three higher education institutions committed to researching theatre- and performance-making in Europe, along with its contexts, theories and histories: the University of Kent, the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London, and the Department of Dramaturgi at Aarhus University (Denmark). As an research network, it brings together researchers working across different European languages who have commitment to work that engages with the role that theatre plays within the specific civic fabric of European culture and society.

We think of Europe not as a fortress, but as a porous geographical region that owes a debt to, and is permeated by, transcultural and multilingual practices and histories. Its art and culture, including theatre and performance, come alive through the continuous, ongoing exchange and interweaving, but also processes of negotiation between regions, languages, and identities. Founded in 2007, the ETRN aims to offer a platform to connect researchers working in the field of European Theatre, whether at the three core partner institutions, elsewhere in Europe, or across the world. We also maintain lively, and ever expanding to connections to theatre artists, theatre institutions, and policy bodies. The mission of the ETRN is to act as a catalyst to facilitate joint and collaborative research projects that through the combined research expertise will generate new insights and understanding of theatre practices, theories and histories across the national and geospatial borders of Europe.

BADCo, The Drawer, 2013 © Ivan Slipcevic Slipke

Areas of specialism within ETRN include:

  • modern and contemporary theatre and performance in Germany, Italy, Spain, the former Yugoslavia, Romania, Poland, Denmark, and other contexts;
  • performer training in Eastern and Western Europe: the legacy of Grotowski and Eugenio Barba;
  • ensemble practice, directing, dramaturgy;
  • theatre systems and institutions;
  • European philosophy and performance studies;
  • contemporary playwriting in Europe and its translations;
  • theatre criticism;
  • multilingual performance.

Local Co-Directors and Coordinators

University of Kent, Dr Margherita Laera and Professor Paul Allain

Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Dr. Marilena Zaroulia

Aarhus University, Prof. Peter M. Boenisch