Welcome to the Centre for Performing Arts Development (CPAD)
The Centre for Performing Arts Development (CPAD) at the University of East London (UEL) is focused on developing original and innovative research in performing arts including drama, theatre and performance studies, music, dance and creative writing, with a particular emphasis on socially engaged practices, performance philosophy and cultures, practice-based research, digital and interdisciplinary research.
CPAD at the University of East London (UEL) is focused on developing original and innovative research in performing arts. The Centre runs public lectures, symposia, workshops and research conversations seminars series.
As well as ad hoc events, CPAD organises two main research event series:
2) Hip Hop Encounters: Practice, Research and Pedagogy.
- Promoting a thriving and inclusive research environment
- Building and providing support for researchers to enhance research capacity and to increase internal and external research opportunities for researchers including MA/PhD students
- Planning workshops and events to deepen knowledge/understanding of practice-as-research
- Developing networks between research centre and researchers in the field locally, nationally, and internationally
- Transferring knowledge through outreach (collaborative research, seminars, workshops, lectures, websites, publications)
- Providing regular communication of research centre activities and opportunities for staff and student involvement
Dr Claudia Brazzale
Claudia Brazzale (MA in Performance Studies, NYU; PhD in Culture and Performance, UCLA) is a scholar, choreographer and performer whose work and collaborations have been presented at many venues in the US and Italy. Claudia is currently a Senior Lecturer and a joint Programme Leader for the MA in Contemporary Performance Practices at UEL.
She has held positions as a lecturer at the Drama, Dance and Performance Studies department at Liverpool Hope University and as a Visiting Scholar at the Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Analysis at London South Bank University.
While living in the USA, Claudia was a Visiting Lecturer at the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University and an Adjunct Lecturer at the Women’s and Gender Studies Department at Rutgers University. Claudia received an International Postdoctoral Fellowship from the American Association University of Women to support her research at the Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers University (2010-11).
Dr Guy Harries
Guy Harries is a composer, sound artist and performer, working with electronics, acoustic instruments, voice and multimedia. His research explores the use of live electronics in music, focusing on dramaturgy, the performative and audience participation.
He also composes socio-politically engaged opera including Jasser (tour throughout the Netherlands in 2006/07) and Two Caravans(2010/13 winner of the Flourish New Opera Prize and produced by Kameroperahuis NL and OperaUpClose London).
His music releases include solo work and collaborations with the POW Ensemble, Meira Asher and Yumi Hara on the labels X-OR, Sub Rosa, Sombre Soniks and Migro.
Claudia Brazzale (also MA Performance Practice + co-director CPAD)
Natalie Garrett-Brown (Head of Department, Music, Writing and Performance | Co-Director Education & Experience, School of Arts and Creative Industries)
Music Performance and Production
Yumi Hara Cawkwell
Guy Harries (also co-director CPAD)
Music Technology and Production
Tony (Anthony) Nwachukwu
Carla Trim-Vamben is a senior lecturer and the programme leader for the BA (Hons) Dance: Urban Practice degree at UEL. Carla is a practice led researcher and her research interests are centred around club culture, specifically house dance. She completed her Master of Arts in Dance Anthropology at Roehampton University writing her thesis about freestyle practice in UK house dance. She is currently developing her house dance practice to create a research project for her PhD application and is the evaluation lead for an Arts Council England funded Transforming Leadership project called We Move.
Trim-Vamben, C. (2013) “From Club to Stage: The Integration of House Dance within Performance Practice”, African Performance Review, 7 (1), pp.134-157. ISSN 1750-4848.
Research interests: contemporary performance, live art, walking, site specific practice, participatory practice, art as activism and creative research methods
Claudia’s scholarship and pedagogical approach are deeply influenced by her cross-cultural intellectual and artistic trajectory and continuing dance-theatre practice. Her interest in the body and movement has led her to explore diverse forms of dance and performance genres – from ballet, modern/post-modern dance, somatics and experimental theatre to West African dance, Butoh, Bharata Natyam, Hawaiian Hula and Balinese dance. Placing these studies in a critical interrogation of her own transnational formation as a dancer and scholar, Claudia’s work focuses on the seduction and consequences of mobility. Centred on feminist ethnographic methodologies, her work engages with the body in relation to the global flows of traditional dance forms; cosmopolitanism and globalisation; fashion, the body and consumer culture; space, place, and migration. Her current research project examines the circulation of West African dance and music in Italy.
Dominic is an academic, playwright and producer. He is currently a Reader in Theatre and Performance and Postgraduate Research Leader in the School of Arts and Digital Industries at the University of East London. His research is focused on art form innovation and methodologies for developing artists and audiences from BAME backgrounds for the arts. He has published widely on BAME representation and inclusion in performance including a monograph (2010) British Asian Theatre – Dramaturgy, Process and Performance for Palgrave. He is Artistic Director of Brolly Productions a BAME led company that creates and curates original projects across art forms for new and diverse audiences; many of whom are first time arts attenders.
I am a London based dance maker, performer and educator.
My work explores universal notions of the group, the individual and the outsider, and challenges what it means to be part of a diverse, contemporary urban generation today. It is informed by having been raised in two different environments, in Ghana and the multicultural, dynamic hub of East London. I am interested in cultural differences beyond the obvious and how they manifest themselves as meaningful similarities and differences in human relationships.
I seek the unexpected, and with my collaborators, we employ task-based or gaming methodologies as our principal creative processes to arrive at live works which are deliberately unpredictable, sometimes with indeterminate outcomes and which challenge conventional norms of performance.
My body holds a wide variety of movement languages: hip-hop, capoeira, tai chi, Ghanian folk dance, contact improvisation, breakdance and many contemporary dance techniques. I also draw extensively from the different experiences and skills from my performers and collaborators. This approach leads to a highly collaborative, fresh and instinctive dance works.
Career diverse artists
Language and movement
Parameters for understanding movement
Gordon has a large body of published works as a composer and music producer. He had a successful twenty-five year career working within music industry as a composer, performer, and record producer, signed as a recording artist with companies such as Virgin and Sony BMG. He has also worked with many independent labels as both an artist and music producer within the “alternative” music scenes. He now exhibits and receives commissioned art works and continues to explore composition and production within a contemporary context.
Gordon teaches and performs socially responsive and impactful interdisciplinary research that is critical and inclusive. Central to his research, teaching and curriculum development throughout his career has been a focus on developing and supporting ‘inclusive thinking dialogue’, creating intervention arts projects UK wide and working with people through community action research projects. He is currently working with Professor Andrew Ravenscroft on RadioActive, a ground-breaking research project based at UEL, RadioActive: Rethinking radio as radical pedagogy for inclusion, engagement and informal learning for social impact, fostering digital and 21C skills. RadioActive at UEL is student led.
RadioActive website and archive: http://uk2.radioactive101.eu/broadcast/
Guy Harries is a composer, sound artist and performer, working with electronics, acoustic instruments, voice and multimedia. He researches the use of live electronics in music with a focus on dramaturgy, the performative and audience participation.
He also composes socio-politically engaged opera including Jasser (Netherlands tour 2006/07) and Two Caravans (OperaUpClose Flourish New Opera Prize winner 2012), and investigates the politics of opera making itself through community opera devising workshops in London and an ongoing symposium series at Trinity Laban Conservatoire.
He also works as an electronic troubadour under the moniker Guy XY and recently released the album Turing Cabaret - an art pop opera inspired by the life of computer pioneer Alan Turing.
His music releases include solo work and collaborations with the POW Ensemble, Meira Asher and Yumi Hara on the labels X-OR, Sub Rosa and Migro. His latest album titled Fault Line was released on the label Sombre Soniks.
I became a bass player in a punk band in Brighton in 1977. After seven years as a professional musician I began writing music for documentaries, both broadcast and non-broadcast, and running songwriting workshops on estates in South London. This led to a post as lecturer on the BA Commercial Music at the University of Westminster, where I completed a PhD that became the book The Lost Women of Rock Music: female musicians of the punk era. I continue to gig and record under the name Helen McCookerybook, and completed the film Stories from the She-Punks in 2018. A book on women engineers and producers is forthcoming.
Research interests: women and punk; women and music technology
Dr. Laura Robinson is Senior Lecturer in Dance at the University of East London. Her PhD research focused on the construction of spectacle in male Street dance crew performances on U.K. television talent show competitions. Publications include an article in the ‘International Journal of Screen dance’, and chapters in ‘Bodies of Sound: Studies across Popular Music and Dance’ (2013) ‘The Oxford Handbook of Dance and the Popular Screen’ (2014), and ‘The Oxford Handbook of Dance and Competition’ (2018). Laura sits on the executive board of PoP MOVES, the international working group for popular dance, and the Society for Dance Research.
Popular dance studies
Dance on Screen
List of research interests:
Feminist Performance Art
Crip devising and performance
Socially Engaged Theatre
Theatre In Education
Drama in Education
Performance and mental health
Performance and disability
Research interests: Social and interdisciplinary performance; cultural interventions, site specific theatre and art; Intersections between performance studies and cultural studies; Social property, social tenants, nomads and performance; Visual cultures of eviction; The politics of property in liberal and neoliberal ideology; Cultural politics and people-property relations; Feminist activist performance and reproductive justice in Ireland.
Speaking of IMELDA: speakingofimelda.org
Soil Depositions: https://soildepositions.wordpress.com
Nov 2012 Love Me As I Am: Gay Men Reflect On Their Lives Contributed a chapter of autobiographical writing in this anthology of reflectional writing by gay men as part of The Quest UK work (eds. Adenji, Brady, Lubbe). Quest Publications, 2012
Nov 2012 The Silent Screen/Scream: Digital interrogations of the (dis)closing subject. Chapter in Identity, Performance and Technology: Practices of empowerment, embodiment and technicity. (ed.s Machon & Broadhurst). Palgrave Macmillan, 2012
Dec 2009 Performative (Dis)closures: Sensual Readings and Writings of the Positive Body. Chapter in Sensualities/Textualities & Technologies: Writings of the Body in 21st Century Performance (ed.s Machon & Broadhurst). Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.
March 2007 Jean, Ron, Franko & Me: Brothers in Abjection. Chapter in collaboration with Dr Carl Lavery in Jean Genet: Performance and Politics (ed. Finborough, Lavery & Shetsova), Palgrave MacMillan, 2006
April 2004 It’s Only a Gameshow: Evolved Intelligences & Reality Cultures with Maxine Doyle Leisure, Media & Visual Culture: Representations & Contestations. LSA. 2004
July 1999 Do You Know What We Mean? – The Documentary Body as the bridge between Arts & Social Sciences (co-written with Josephine Machon) Not All the Time, But Mostly. Creative Forum. Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University. ISBN: 0-905488-59-8
He studied at the Urdang Academy, London Studio Centre (BA), Royal Academy of Dance (PGCE (QTS) and Laban (MA) and has worked extensively as a professional dancer/performing with many Contemporary dance companies and choreographers including; Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch, Retina Dance Company, Lea Anderson, Green Candle Dance Company, State of Emergency, Foot in Hand Dance Company (Louise Katerega), Liz Lea for ROH2 (Royal Opera House) INTOTO (Jean Abreu, Lisa Torun, Liz Lea, Michael Popper). He also performed for Royal Caribbean Productions and Paul Holman Associates productions.
Prior to joining the University of East London, he lectured / taught at the University of Lincoln, Lewisham College and Newham Sixth Form College.
His current research interests focus on graduate employability & skills within the creative industries as well as the performativity of gender on the London drag scene.
Dance Studies, South African Dance and Theatre, African and the Diaspora Dance and Theatre, Politics and Dance, Sexuality and Gender, Race Studies, Feminist Poststructuralism, Ethnography, Phenomenology, Practice-Based Research
His soundtracks have recently appeared on the “McLaren / Westwood Gang” (Punk) documentary and the internationally acclaimed “Kiev Unbroken” documentary. As a collector of synthesizers and “strange musical objects” Sönke has a keen interested in sound design, music technology and studio/recording history.
Research interests: Sound design, music technology, studio/recording history/ Artificial Intelligence, travelling for music,
In the late 70s he became involved in the New Wave music scene and formed
art rock band The Books, signing deals with Logo records and Virgin Publishing. He wrote and recorded an album, ‘Expertise’ and three singles with Bowie engineer and Duran Duran producer Colin Thurston. The band also toured the UK with The Skids in support of the album’s release.
In the mid 1980s he signed to Warner Chappell Publishing, Abstract and EG records with his band Howard Hughes and The Western Approaches. They released four singles and toured the UK and Europe, performing at Glastonbury, Pink Pop and Ciney festivals among others.
Over the next two decades, using the stage name Howard Hughes, he worked as a session player, producer and songwriter with various bands, including groundbreaking Scottish band The Associates, industrial group SPK, Eurythmics and Peter Murphy. He toured Europe the USA and Japan and worked on studio production projects with American, French and English artists, as well as composing Music for Theatre, Film and Television.
In 2007 he became Head of Music, Media and Art at Lewisham and Southwark College and in 2014 he moved to UEL as Programme Leader for Music Performance and Production.
He is currently working with Barbara Marsh, award winning poet and former member of The Dear Janes. Their album will be released in late 2020.
Research interests: Parties, party and DJ culture, social justice, society, politics, music culture.
He specialises in connecting the worlds of music production and learning by creating innovative opportunities with music-focused creative professionals and industry. His project CDR - 'The Night of Ideas and Tracks in the Making' is one such opportunity grooming some of today's most forward-thinking artists and producers that include SBTRKT, Floating Points, and Maya Jane Coles. To many he is also known as producer of Attica Blues and project monikers NEPA Allstar and The Wach whose diverse production and remix credits include The Cinematic Orchestra, Jazzanova, Duran Duran and U.N.K.L.E. His lecturing, consulting and learning concepts have been utilised by companies and organisations worldwide.
The art of music production
Writing music using technology
Evolution of the craft
Performance and technology
Creating communities around music technology and production
This includes over fifteen productions for Hull Truck Theatre, multiple productions for the Edinburgh Festival, including An Audience with… starring Alistair McGowan, over a decade of productions for the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain, most recently F-OFF in the West End.
Tristan was a musical director on the Beijing and London Olympic Games and a composer for the British Pavilion at the World Expo in Shanghai.
Film work includes To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before (Channel 4 Films). When Romeo Met Juliet and The Merchant of Venice (BBC) and Anna Karenina (Working Title Films).
His most recent work includes Deeds Not Words, a musical theatre piece in memory of murdered M.P. Jo Cox, Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four for Black Eyed Theatre, Dead Sheep by Jonathan Maitland, and #Hashtag Lightie (Arcola Theatre).
Tristan is an Education Associate for the Donmar Warehouse Theatre. He is currently Co-Programme Leader for Performing Arts at UEL.
Research interests: improvisation, composition and performance practice in Avant-rock, performance of composition by Lindsay Cooper.
Our research addresses community participation and action, ethics, social inequality and cultural politics. We are committed to performance practice as a means of transformation, as well as to communicating our research as widely as possible in other ways. IPAD has hosted a number of conferences including The East End Seen Through Performance (2009), Archiving for the Future: using archives to enhance learning and teaching in drama and theatre studies (2010), Teaching Popular Dance in Higher Education (2010) and Making Theatre for Young Audiences (2011). One of IPAD’s founding projects - the East London Theatre Archive (ELTA), that later developed into a second project called Clustering and Enhancing Digital Archives for Research (CEDAR) –provided free on-line access to a digitised archive of over 20,000 materials (playbills, scripts, posters, designs, photos, news clips, etc) as primary source materials from East London theatres including Hoxton Hall, Theatre Royal Stratford East, Hackney Empire, and Theatre Venture. UEL was awarded £500,000 from JISC for ELTA and £250,000 from JISC for CEDAR. Artists, historians, students and the public at large have access to the materials. Thus, IPAD engages the public not only in outreach through theatrical performance, but through on-line sources, workshops, art installations, and site-specific performances, publishing our work in non-academic and academic locations and contributing to the public dissemination of knowledge, both nationally and internationally.
See details on CPAD's research environment.
Details coming soon.
Details coming soon.
See details on our past events.
See CPAD's partnerships:
- Boulder University, Colorado
- Columbia College, Chicago
- East London Dance
- Fraser Valley University
- Hackney Empire
- Hoxton Hall
- Institute of Contemporary Music Performance
- London International Festival of Theatre (Lift)
- Centre for East London Studies
- Newham Sixth Form College (NewVIc)
- Stratford Circus
- Theatre Royal Stratford East
- Theatre Venture
- Urban Development
Contact the Centre for Performing Arts Development:
Email CPAD - CPAD@uel.ac.uk