Hip Hop Encounters: Practice, Research and Pedagogy (part of CPAD) – a series coordinated and convened by C. Brazzale

This is a series of talks, round-table discussions, performances, film screenings and workshops addressing the unique specialisation of our dance programme. Building upon UEL's Dance: Urban Practice Programme the series brings together renowned scholars, pioneering Hip Hop artists and students to advance innovative explorations on Hip Hop cultures, practices, researches and pedagogies. As a convener of Hip Hop Encounters, we promote the active inclusion of our undergraduate students in this series by integrating the events in their module activities and engaging students in round-table discussions with our Guest Speakers. Engagement and participation within the programme has been really high and the talks have also attracted scholars and practitioners outside UEL.

Past events included:

  • Hip Hop Pedagogies, a symposium featuring performance presentations and a roundtable discussion with Robert Hylton, Kamala Devam and UEL's Dance Faculty - 12 May 2016
  • Popping Mannequins, Westfield-UEL, a performance event choreographed by Jo Read (UEL), Vicky 'Skylitz' Mantey, Bly Richards and Scott Kean - 7 October 2016
  • Hip Hop in My House: Popular Dance, Identity Politics, and Postracial Physics, a lecture-talk by Professor Thomas F. DeFrantz (Chair of African and African American Studies and Prof. of Dance, Duke University) - 17 November 2016
  • Reconfiguring the history of Hip Hop through the Downtown Party Scene, a lecture-presentation by Professor Tim Lawrence (University of East London) - 1 March 2017
  • Project Trans(m)it: Movement in Film: an international screendance festival celebrating works that explore the human body and/or movement  - 25 October 2017, 6-8pm
  • Drilling, Grit and Flava: Epistemologies of Breaking, a performative lecture by Professor Sherril Dodds (Temple University) - 13 March 2018

UEL Experimental and Improvised Music Practice as Research event series

Curated by Yumi Hara Cawkwell (with assistance from Guy Harries)
We invited high-profile, key practitioner-researchers to talk about their recent activities. These included new publications, recent music releases, significant performances or other activities in the area of experimental and improvised musical practice. The field of contemporary experimental and improvised music is an area of particular strength of music at UEL, with several members of academic staff specialise in it.

A research event combining a talk, discussion and performance by the guests and hosts is a unique format, which is a form of experimentation within a 'public laboratory'. 

11 March 2015
The Observation and Extraction of Sound for Improvisation: Sonic Rituals and Stereo Bugscope (lecture, performance, and workshop)

Haco, Guy Harries & Yumi Hara 

During this event, Japanese musician and sound artist Haco presented the aesthetics and practical methodology of her work, with a focus on the Stereo Bugscope system and its use in musical improvisation. The event also included a workshop with the active participation of the audience and a live performance including Haco, Yumi Hara and Guy Harries.

Haco is an internationally known Japanese composer, sound artist and singer. She developed various hand-made electronic instruments made from everyday life objects and sounds. These include the feedback instrument 'howling pot' and the 'Stereo Bugscope' system - a performance system that detects oscillating sounds emitted by the circuitry of electronic devices. UEL lecturers Yumi Hara and Guy Harries found several themes in common between their Sonic Rituals project and Haco’s work: the utilisation of everyday objects through amplification of very soft sounds, and experimental aesthetics based on rock sensibility. 

16 June 2016
Tim Hodgkinson, music and the myth of wholeness, talk and performance with Yumi Hara & Guy Harries

Tim Hodgkinson gave a talk regarding his book ‘Music and the Myth of Wholeness' (MIT Press). The event also included an 'unplugged' performance with Yumi Hara (voice, harp, found objects) and Guy Harries (flute, found objects).

Tim Hodgkinson is a composer, musician, and writer. In 1968, he cofounded (with Fred Frith) the politically and musically radical group Henry Cow. His compositions have been performed at concerts and festivals around the world.


25 Feb 2017
David Toop: UEL Practice as Research event 2017 series 1

David Toop is a world-renowned musician, author and professor of Audio Culture and Improvisation at the London College of Communication. He was invited to perform and discuss his book Into the Maelstrom: Music, Improvisation and the Dream of Freedom. In this book, David Toop introduces the philosophy and practice of improvisation within the historical context of the post-World War II era and investigates a wide range of improvisational tendencies. In exploring the diverse ways in which spontaneity became a core value in the early twentieth century as well as free improvisation's connection to both 1960s rock (The Beatles, Cream, Pink Floyd) and the era of post-Cagean indeterminacy in composition, he provides a definitive and all-encompassing exploration of free improvisation up to 1970, ending with the late 1960s international developments of free music in Chicago, Berlin and Amsterdam.

The event started with a trio improvisation performance with Yumi Hara and Guy Harries, followed by a discussion regarding his writing and performance practice in the context of his research for his new publication.

Friday 31 March 2017, 'Probes: Podcast as research output' with Chris Cutler
University Square Stratford (USS), US 3.38 Black Box Studio
6.30 pm – 9.00 pm

Chris Cutler is a British performer, author, and founder/CEO of the independent label and distribution network ReR Megacorp that specialises in experimental music. He became well-known as a drummer of the 1970s experimental group Henry Cow. As a researcher, he was involved with The International Association for the Study of Popular Music from its inception in the early '80s and in his theoretical/critical book File Under Popular he proposed that 'musicians themselves develop a theory of music and culture derived from their own practice', an idea now resurgent in the concept of Practice as Research.

Chris performed an improvisation set with Yumi Hara and Guy Harries, followed by a conversation regarding his ongoing podcast series. Probes, which combines research, theory, presentation and curation - a practical model of the value and possible mode of presentation for research output by practitioners.

Sound-Body-Movement Symposium Series

Sound-Body-Movement is an annual research event exploring the theme of interdisciplinary, cross-modal collaboration in the arts, reflected across various media and aesthetic approaches including dance, drawing, performance art, theatre and participatory performance. The symposium includes talks, live performances, workshops and panel discussions and features guest artists and speakers, as well as UEL-based academics.

The symposium is curated by Guy Harries (UEL) and Michael Bunce (2016 and 2017 editions) and supported by the Centre for Performing Arts Development at the University of East London.

Sound Body Movement 2015 (Embodied Sound)
13 May 2015
Featuring: Zeynep Bulut, Marco Donnarumma, Sharon Gal, Live Hazard Collective, Martin Reznik, Michael Bunce, Guy Harries

Sound Body Movement 2016
11 March 2016
Featuring: Philipp Wachsmann, Catherine Hope-Jones, Valerie Pezeron (UEL), Claudia Brazzale (UEL), Michael Bunce (UEL) and Guy Harries (UEL), UEL Performing Arts students

Sound Body Movement 2017
25 March 2017

Participants include artist Bruno Martelli (Gibson/Martelli), flautist Stina Wilson, sculptor Marina Stanimirovic, dancer Claudia Brazzale (UEL), live electronics from Michael Bunce (UEL), Tony Nwachukwu (UEL) and Guy Harries (UEL/Trinity Laban Conservatoire) alongside UEL Performing Arts students.

Community Engagement and the Arts (IPAD colloquia series)

You are invited to the IPAD colloquia series of the University of East London (UEL) entitled Community Engagement and the Arts. These events seek to investigate and develop dialogues and practices between the performing arts in Higher Education and local communities; addressing political and social impact. The series will include arts-based workshops, evaluation and assessment sessions, and discussions exploring the nature, practice, policies and politics of community engagement.

Past colloquia events:
3 May 2013, 10.00 am - 1.00 pm
Politicising Communities - brings together varied strategies for community engagement towards effecting political and social change. The event will begin with a Playback Theatre performance to gather themes and stories related to the Newham community, followed by presentations from guest speakers to share practices based on the politicisation of communities, and culminating with a workshop focused on community mapping and asset building towards arts-based projects.

Presentations and workshops by:
Veronica Needa, True Heart Playback Theatre
Professor Tim Prentki, University of Winchester
Roland Muldoon, CAST and Hackney Empire
Jan Sharkey-Dodds, Theatre Royal Stratford East
Dr Dominic Hingorani, University of East London

14 June 2013, 10.00 am - 1.00 pm
Applying Digitised Agency - the colloquium will address notions of social engagement through the digitisation of performances, social networking sites linked to political and social change, and the effects of digital technology on policy-making bodies.

Presentations and workshops by:
Hannah Nicklin, Third Angel
Professor Andrew Ravenscroft, University of East London
Christina Papagiannouli, e-theatre
Marc Garrett, Furtherfield
Dr Ananda Breed, University of East London

19 July 2013, 1.00 pm - 5.00 pm
Performing Landscapes and Identities - the colloquium will consider walking as interrogative, investigative, performative and documentary, with presentations and provocations from a range of practitioners, many of whom have made walks and work in response to contested and changing landscapes, including Newham, Hackney and the 2012 Olympic site. Discussions will interrogate the interface between geographical and sovereign spaces.

Presentations and workshops by:
Clare Qualmann and Mark Hunter, Walking Artists Network
Dr Misha Myers, Falmouth University
Sue Mayo, Magic Me
Jonas Leonhard Tinius, Cambridge Performance Network
Dr Luis Sotelo, University of East London

All events are located at Stratford Circus and free of charge. Coffee and tea will be served thirty minutes prior to start time. Please RSVP.

Stratford Circus
Theatre Square, Stratford 
London E15 1BX

Practice as Research seminars

As part of our ongoing contribution to this important area of research, we offer a rolling programme of PaR seminars that are open to the public.
SEMINAR 1.00pm - 3.00 pm

1 October 2010
Presenters: Clare Qualmann and Eyal Sivan
Clare Qualmann will present: 'Things that have gone: the disappearing terrains vagues of the near East End' is an exploration of marginal spaces and their roles; their potential for inspiring and accommodating creative participation in the city.
Eyal Sivan will show her latest documentary "Jaffa, the orange's clockwork" and talk about creative media archive practices.

5 November 2010
Presenters: Tim Atkins and Jo Thomas
Tim Atkins has four books of poetry out this year. He will read from each of them and talk about what went into their making. Questions and heckles are welcomed.
Jo Thomas will present on Ultra Tonal 2010: Micro expression, Macro Ventures

11 February 2011 
Room TBC 
Presenters: Matthew Hawkins and Jill Daniels

Matthew Hawkins will present 'The concept of affective tonality and its manifestation as narrative experience in the short film Bullseye'.
This seminar will explore the concept of affective tonality as a method of understanding narrative, as expressed through my own film practice as research.  Bullseye (Hawkins, 2010) is a five-minute narrative film that encapsulates the narrative modes of Aristotelian linearity through simple 'plotting' that centres on the British pub game of darts and a protagonist's attempts to achieve his goal of throwing a 'bullseye'. However, this paper will argue that the spectator experiences this narrative through the affective rhythm created by the movement within the frame, the variations of light and colour on screen and the measure of the diegetic sound heard and that this experience is as important to understanding the narrative as character identification and linearity. Drawing on concepts of affect and sensation developed by Gilles Deleuze (1986, 1989, 2003) as well as his concept of the rhizome developed with Felix Guattari (1988) this paper shall map out the concept of affective tonality as a tool for understanding the holistic cinematic experience and how this can be then used to understand the physical mechanisms of narrative cinema.    

Jill Daniels will present on 'Problems of the Cinematic Representation of the Self in the Autobiographical Documentary'
"Autobiographical documentaries use reflexivity not to eradicate the real as much as to complicate referential claims." (Lane 2002: 18) In this presentation, I will examine and discuss the problems and decisions taken in the cinematic representation of self in the film work in progress for my PhD called The Border Crossing. The film is set in the Basque country and elides fiction and documentary elements within a discourse exploring place, memory and identity.  The filmed performative elements depict a young woman's wanderings through the Basque country and over the border into France, interweaved with filmed observational material of several female protagonists who live and work in the area, and whose narratives of the present and past include references to history and violence that interact with the filmmaker’s own off-screen, voiced autobiographical narrative. 

4 March 2011
Presenters: Mary Fogarty and Jorge Ramos
Mary Fogarty will challenge some of the commonly held articulations about the distinctions between art and sport. In doing so, my aim is to explore new aesthetic, postcolonial frameworks for approaching athletic practices, demanding high degrees of physicality, in contemporary art forms. I will focus specifically on the dance form known as breaking (also known as b-boying/b-girling, or 'breakdancing') and its historical legacy as a case study. I hope to share some of the benefits of unravelling some of the currently unchallenged discourses surrounding creative vs. athletic practices for both the educational context as well as the creative practices of performers.
Jorge Ramos work focuses on the structures of interaction between actor and spectator within a live theatrical event. I have been looking specifically at the live performances of the Hotel Medea trilogy in Brazil and the UK during its tour in 2010. I intend to shape this presentation as a mini-event in itself, and as such I must find the minimal tools required to engage participants in the complex interactive structures employed by Hotel Medea. The guiding questions about this work are to the unspoken contract of interaction between the audience and the theatrical event, between actor and audience and between an audience member and other audience members within the same event.

1 April 2011
Presenters: Luis Sotelo and Broderick Chow
Luis Sotelo will present on 'The place of the intercultural in walking performance.'
Broderick Chow will present on Parkour and political resistance.

6 May 2011
Presenters: Eve Katsouraki and Carla Trim-Vamben
Eve Katsouraki will present on installation performance art: aesthetics and practices, looking into the Ranciere's notion of the sublime as reconfigured in contemporary performance practices through digital technologies and sciences.
Carla Trim-Vamben will present on club style dances being taught in the studio.

RSVP. Please send an email confirmation to Sarahleigh Castelyn s.castelyn@uel.ac.uk. The workshops/seminars will be followed by refreshments. We look forward to seeing you!