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    • An a/r/tographic exploration of engagement in theatrical performance: What does this mean for the student/teacher relationship?

      Bird, Drew; Tozer, Katy; University of Derby; University of Derby, UK; University of Derby, UK (Sage, 2018-07-11)
      With an emphasis on self-study and the connections between the personal and the professional domain, the authors reflect upon their teaching practice on a postgraduate theatre-based course using the research methodology of a/r/tography. The aim was to develop understanding of teacher/student roles and how these can affect learning. Through researcher reflexivity, focus groups and questionnaires, data were captured from students/participants responding to a video of the researcher’s solo performance work. The research presents itself through three a/r/tographic renderings. First, the experience of seeing tutors in unfamiliar roles is considered. Second, the impact of witnessing tutors taking risks as a performer and being vulnerable is discussed and, lastly, the work illuminates new ways of opening up as teachers. The authors explore how the student’s/participant’s perception of them as tutors seemed to change after witnessing them as artists and how this impacted upon student’s learning for their own assessed performance pieces.
    • Fairy tales, landscapes and metaphor in supervision: An exploratory study.

      Smith, Margaret E.; Bird, Drew; University of Derby (2013-04-02)
      Objective: Supervision is an important requirement for most health professionals and finding innovative and creative forms of ensuring safe and ethical practice are helpful to practitioners. This paper explores the use of fairy tales, mental landscapes and metaphors to illuminate the therapeutic and supervisory relationship. A therapy case study was used as reference. Design: The design was based on a grounded theory methodology and qualitative‐based collaborative meetings between professionals. Both researchers/participants were from different therapeutic backgrounds; drama therapy and integrative counselling. Findings: Two main themes emerged relating to the therapeutic process: (1) Using Archetypal themes in fairy tales to enhance the clarity of the therapeutic landscape; and (2) The facilitation of the sense system through the use of small objects to reconceptualise the therapeutic dynamic. Conclusion: The use of metaphor and small objects to explore retrospective therapeutic encounters can enhance the role of supervision by broadening the cognitive landscape of the therapist. Implications for the therapist/client and supervisor relationships are considered.
    • Formulating a model for personal and professional development using a research methodology in solo autobiographical performance

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (European Federation of Dramatherapy Conference 2016, Bucharest., 2016-05-07)
      The workshop will offer an autobiographical performance by the presenter followed by a workshop and discussion that will explore the potential for using solo performance for personal and professional development using the rigor of a research methodology. The workshop will be of particular interest for those who want to make clearer links with practice as a Drama Therapist, artist and researcher. The model utilises specific research methodologies to explore the synthesis of research and performance. The performance is an ongoing development using heuristic research methodology and an action research style approach to explore practice as a therapist and Dramatherapy trainer. Ethrington (2002) suggests that heuristic research offers the opportunity for therapeutic development whilst offering a critical gaze on therapist’s practice that can mirror supervision practice. Action research explores our own story in the company of others, who are also exploring their story (McNiff, 2007). In respect of both research approaches the audience, participants and witnesses of the performance help inform the development of the model using solo autobiographical performance. The post show workshop will explore the synthesis of three disciplines of Drama Therapist, artist and researcher to explore personal themes and obstacles that might impact on practice as a Drama Therapist. Yalom (2002) makes a clear link with personal themes and professional themes, suggesting where one is stuck personally one is also stuck professionally. The workshop will be co-facilitated to develop participant reflection; focusing on archetypal motifs and myth elicited from the performance; the impact of theatre and how the imagination can be cultivated specifically for personal and professional development using the characteristics of heuristic research.
    • A heuristic model of supervision using small objects to develop the senses

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (Iris Publishers, 2019-07-31)
      The research explores how the conceptual frame of Heuristic inquiry can inform non-verbal exploration in psychotherapy supervision practices. The author explores their practice as a dramatherapist and how small objects can broaden the awareness of the supervisees own relationship patterns. Small objects helped to re-conceptualise the therapeutic dynamic using metaphor and make conscious parts of the supervisee experience they had been unaware.
    • The host revisited.

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby; Original music by Matt Le Mare; Directed by Katy Tozer (Buxton Fringe Festival 2018, 2018-07-12)
      A darkly comic, fragmented tale with serious aspirations, no actors or scenery, and only one chair! This one-man show plays with the fine line between commitment and obsession; between something and nothing; between imagination and the empty space. Original music by Matt Le Mare and Directed by Katy Tozer.
    • The host#1

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (WeAreKunst Art Gallery, Belper, 2016-10-08)
    • The host#3

      Bird, Drew; Tozer, Katy; University of Derby; Le Mare, Matt; Baron, Chris (The Maypole Café Bar and Theatre, 2018-02-10)
      A darkly comic, fragmented tale with serious aspirations, no actors or scenery, and only one chair! This one-man show plays with the fine line between commitment and obsession; between something and nothing; between imagination and the empty space. Original music by Matt Le Mare and Chris Baron, music directed by Matt Le Mare. Directed by Katy Tozer
    • The host#4

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (European Federation of Dramatherapy 4th European Dramatherapy Conference: Borders in Action, Nürtingen, Germany., 2018-04-28)
      The performance is an ongoing solo performance that explores the borders between characters and their external and internal worlds. A host guides the audience through the performance introducing them to various characters and their worlds. A bride groom stands at the front of the church, an integrator attempts to squeeze out a password from a man bound to a chair, a cheerleader relentlessly practices her routine, an emaciated women is tied to a tree and a door waits to be opened. The external and internal world of the performer comes under close scrutiny as the host of the show attempts to pull the fragmented show together with no actors or scenery and only one chair. The performance exposes the borders of the characters rigid worlds and the transformation and energy that ensues when those world collide and elide. The performance explores the borders of the personal and autobiographical with the professional role of a Drama therapist and facilitator. The performer facilitates and guides an autobiographical performance that is informed by the research methodology known as Heuristic Inquiry. Using the characteristics of intuition and illumination the performer draws on personal material to deepen ones understanding of a Drama therapist and the importance of play in the therapeutic process. The borders between the story of the performer and the audience’s story are drawn closer together as the performance draws on mythological and existential themes. The performance approach breaks down the 4th wall, guiding the audience into a shared world and existence with the staged characters. The performance plays with the imagination and the borders between the seen and unseen and the energy that is created when separate worlds elide. Directed by Katy Tozer.
    • How can arts-based research in dramatic performance illuminate understanding of the therapeutic relationship?

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (Intellect, 2019-10-01)
      This article explores how Heuristic Inquiry (HI), harnessed for arts-based research using solo performance, deepened the author’s understanding of the therapeutic relationship. The research explores the rehearsal and devising process of nine performances to explore barriers to a playful encounter with the audience and client using the myth of Psyche and Cupid. Themes of seeking approval, technique and shame are considered as potential obstacles to forging a co-creative therapeutic alliance.
    • Playback Theatre, autoethnography and generosity

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (Taylor and Francis, 2017-03-10)
    • Rediscovering the playful learner.

      Bird, Drew; Holmwood, Clive; University of Derby (Routledge, 2018-10-25)
    • Then there were three - 'The show must go on'.

      Bird, Drew; University of Derby (British Association of Dramatherapists Annual Conference, 2010-09-11)
      This Theatrical show will develop ideas of Peter Brook's empty space and Lecoq's neutral space and how this utilizes the imagination. The content will be an exploration of loss, isolation and the struggle to adapt to change and the utilization of the imagination to explore somatic memory. The show will explore the memories of the body which conflict with the memories of the mind. The drama will present a show struggling to continue and how this impacts on the diminishing cast who are axed one by one as the play his financial crises. The show has been running many years and the attracted large audiences in the past and yet still continues to try and capture the glory days. The show explores the characters' struggle to reconcile the changes in the show and their difficulty responding to the changes, still replaying out the same scenes with an imaginary cast. The show develops the ideas of Psychiatrist and Hypnotherapist Milton Erikson who said there are no resistant clients just inflexible therapists. This is a development of the Buddhist idea of a fixed self and how such a narrative can impact on the ability to navigate the necessary challenges through the journey of life and as a therapist. Themes include existentialism, Jung's individuation process, rites of passage, improvisation and the development of the self and dramatherapists need to be flexible in order to attune to change and the needs of the clients. The show locates the importance of theater at the heart of the transformation process and how working with the physical body can access Stanislavsky's ideas of emotional memory and access the unconscious. The show will demonstrate the power of Brectian approaches to theater and the role the audience plays in the show as part of the shared transformation of change.
    • Towards a drama therapy pedagogy: An a/r/tographic study using dramatic improvisation

      Bird, Drew; Tozer, Katy; University of Derby (Intellect, 2016-10-01)
      This article explores the role of the art form in both research and teaching practice for the delivery of an MA drama therapy program in the United Kingdom. A/r/tography as the chosen research methodology makes central the artistic process to inform teaching and research through ongoing reflexivity using dramatic improvisation. Seven phases (renderings) illustrate the development towards formulating a drama therapy pedagogy. The authors explore disseminating the research through performance as another form of praxis.