Call for Papers: deadline Friday 11th September 2015

The surge of interest in the musical in the landscape of British higher education has highlighted the significant gap in research in this area. To explore new avenues of understanding, the Society for Dance Research (SDR), in conjunction with Dance Scholarship Oxford (DANSOX), is holding a one day event on Saturday 28th November 2015 at the Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Oxford. The Role of the Choreographer in the Stage and Screen Musical will bring both academics and practitioners together to consider how the choreographer has played a vital role in the development of this form of creative performance. Contributions to the day should focus on exploring the genre of the musical specifically but we welcome and encourage papers that explore wider facets of choreography and dancing therein.

Date:  Saturday 28th November 2015, 11am-6pm

Venue:  Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Oxford

Confirmed Keynotes:   Professor Millie Taylor (University of Winchester, UK)

Discussion with distinguished choreographer to be confirmed.

Topics and questions that presenters may wish to consider include:

  • The choreographer and identity in the stage and screen musical: as director? as collaborator? as entrepreneur? as author? as many identities?
  • What are the skills needed to choreograph for the stage and screen?
  • What role does the choreographer play in the debates about musical theatre as “music/singing” and musical theatre as “acting/performing”?
  • What is the significant of choreographic authenticity in the stage and screen musical?
  • How is the role of the choreographer influenced by the impact of social categories such as race, gender and class?
  • To what extent do musical theatre choreographers negotiate/bridge the boundaries between popular and ‘high’ culture?
  • What values are constructed about the body through choreography in the musical as commercial entertainment?
  • In which ways do choreographers play out or resist the notion of visual spectacle in the musical on stage or screen?
  • What is at stake for the choreographer in various processes of translation from stage to screen and vice versa?

Deadline for proposals: extended to Friday 11th September 2015

Conference committee to include: Paul Jackson, Dr Susan Jones, Professor Millie Taylor and Dr Victoria Thoms

Guidelines for Proposals

Conference presentations should not exceed 20 minutes in length. Please note that submissions will be reviewed blind by the committee. Successful applicants will be notified by 2nd October 2015.

Attendance will be free for all SDR members. Please note that all those presenting papers must be members of the SDR.

Proposals should include:

  • An abstract of no more than 300 words outlining the subject or thematics and methodological approach of your proposed presentation, an indicative bibliography and technical requirements.
  • Name, contact details, institutional/organisational affiliation/s (if relevant), plus title of presentation on a separate document

Please send all proposals to: Brendan McCarthy, Secretary, Society for Dance Research at

Please see for further information about the Society including membership

This symposium to be held together with the Society’s Annual General Meeting.