A warm welcome to our new Visiting Fellow at CAS and at the Centre for GTH, Prof. Patrick Ebewo, Ph.D.

Patrick Ebewo is Professor at the Faculty of Art Sciences at Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa.

He is Visiting Fellow at CAS and at the Centre for Global Theatre History in June and July 2019 at the invitation of Prof. Dr. Christopher Balme.

His research focuses on African theatre, the theatre of industrial society, theatre in developmental contexts and popular theatre.

The University of Ibadan in Nigeria conferred a PhD on him in 1988, after completing a master’s degree at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. He has been attending and presenting papers at international conferences, seminars and workshops since 1984. He has been a supervisor and examiner of master’s and doctoral students and has served as external examiner for the University of Pretoria, the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, the University of Ghana, Legon, University of Swaziland and the National University of Lesotho. He was the convener of the first international conference hosted by the Faculty of the Arts in 2011, which culminated in the publication of a book entitled, Africa and Beyond: Arts and Sustainable Development, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing (2013).


His first research interests were in the areas of history, theory and criticism but he has gradually moved to a more utilitarian aspect of applied theatre for community empowerment and economic development in the creative arts industry. He has received grants from local and international organisations as well as government departments that assisted him to attend national and international theatre projects and conferences. He has been privileged to attend two staff development fellowships at the Usmanu Dan Fodiyo University in Sokoto, Nigeria.


Prof Ebewo is an active member of the editorial advisory boards of the South African Theatre Journal, the West African Theatre Journal, University of IIorin, LWATI: A Journal of Contemporary Research, and, at TUT, NEXUS Journal. He is an active member of the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR) and the African Theatre Association (AfTA).

Prof Ebewo’s field of expertise and research specialisation is dramatic arts and theatre, with the focus on:

  • African drama and theatre
  • Cultural studies
  • Dramatic Literature and Criticism
  • Theatre for development/Industrial Theatre
  • Popular theatre​​

For more information, please contact:Name: Prof Patrick J Ebewo Email:EbewoP@tut.ac.za

Call for Papers: Theatre for Development (TfD): Historical and Institutional Perspectives.

Pretoria, South Africa, 16-20 March, 2020

International Conference, organized by ERC project Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945 & Department of Drama & Film Studies, Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa.

In March 2020, the ERC funded project Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945 at LMU Munich will be organizing an international conference in collaboration with Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa on the topic Theatre for Development (TfD): Historical and Institutional Perspectives.

The thrust of the conference will be to contextualize the emergence of TfD, especially in the first decades in Africa. From its early beginnings in the 1970s under different nomenclatures and practices –“popular theatre”, “community theatre” – TfD quickly transformed itself into a coherent organizational field capable of attracting significant governmental and NGO funding. It also affected a change in the teaching and practice of theatre studies in many African countries. The argument could be made that the success of TfD in the Global South has contributed significantly to the emergence of Applied Theatre as a sub discipline in many Global North countries.

This conference seeks to explore the genealogy, the varied contexts of its development, theories and institutional perspectives. Key issues the conference will interrogate include the varied manifestations of the genre and its influence across cultures and continents; funding (Governmental and NGOs), networks of individuals and institutions that propelled its rapid growth and acceptance within academic and non-academic contexts.

We welcome contributions which engage with and provoke dialogue about the historiography of the Theatre for Development paradigm. Topics might include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Historiography and Archiving of Theatre for Development
  • Periodization and diffusion
  • Seminal figures and initiators
  • The dialectics of Africa’s development and Theatre for Development
  • Integrating (new) media into TfD
  • The politics of funding (governmental and NGOs) and influence on TfD
  • Theories, Training and TfD Practitioners
  • Theatre for Development within and outside the academia
  • Networks, institutions and organizations
  • Critical reflections within the field
  • Brecht, Freire, Boal and the emergence of TfD

Deadline 30th May 2019
Reply to:
Abdul Karim Hakib
Doctoral ResearcherERC Project “Developing Theatre”, Institut für Theaterwissenschaft, LMU München
email: Hakib.Karim@lmu.de

Vorschau(öffnet in neuem Tab)

A warm welcome to Gideon Ime Morison, new PhD student of our ERC Project „Developing Theatre“

We are very pleased to announce that Gideon Ime Morison joined the ERC Project „Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945“  in January, 2019. His PhD research will focus on expert networks, techno-politics and emergent performance trends in select Pan-African cultural and arts festivals focusing, particularly, on FESTAC ’77 and PANAFEST.

Gideon Ime Morison is a poet, academic, researcher, blogger, and theatre/cultural critic. He is an Alumnus of the Department of Theatre, Film and Carnival Studies, University of Calabar and the Department of Theatre Arts, University of Uyo, Nigeria.

Gideon Morison has tutored, partnered and consulted widely for individuals and bodies corporate. His research output, which straddle areas such as media / theatre theory, history and criticism, development communication and comparative cultural studies, has been published severally in the Nigerian Theatre Journal, Parnassus, and Bianchi Journal. He also lectures in the Department of Theatre Arts, School of Secondary Education (Arts and Social Sciences), Federal College of Education (Technical), Omoku, Rivers State – Nigeria.

Expert networks, techno-politics and emergent performance trends in select Pan-African cultural and arts festivals

Global historical happenings such as the Slave Trade, Colonization, World War II and the integration of oppositional voices or liberation movements against them are widely assumed to have had a profound influence / impact on the emergence, development and diversity of performance culture across the African continent. The philosophy and activism of movements like the slave trade abolitionist group, negritude, nationalist political organizations, as well as arts and cultural troupes / groups sponsored or funded from the diaspora seems to have created a network of collaborations with the goal of forging a renaissance in African identity as expressed / exhibited through various international cultural and arts festivals held in Africa from 1966 to 1977 and beyond. Gideon Morison’s research will focus on the critical examination of the global linkages, expert networks, and techno-politics that enabled the staging of these events. With particular emphasis on FESTAC ´77 and the emergent Pan-African Historical Festival (PANAFEST), this study assess the contributions and legacies of the festivals on the performance praxis in the post-colonial territories in which the festivals were and / or still staged. 

Journal of Global Theatre History: Vol. 3, no. 1, 2019 out now.

Fernanda Torres in The Flash And Crash Days

The peer-reviewed online Journal of Global Theatre History has recently published its 3rd issue.

Explore this new issue and learn about the popular genre joyūgeki  (actress play) in Japan,  about theatre education in the Levant, i.e. Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan and Palestine, between late 1940s and early 1990s, and about the influence that new paradigms and global circuits have exerted locally on the relationship between theatre aesthetics and production in Brazil.

Contributors are Ayumi Fujioka on „A New Notion of Time in Modern Tokyo Life: A Comedy at High Speed at the Imperial Theatre in the 1920s“, Ziad Adwan onImaginary Theatre. Professionalising Theatre in the Levant 1940-1990“, and Gustavo Guenzburger on „Transnationality, Sponsorship and Post-Drama: „The Flash and Crash Days“ of Brazilian Theatre. With an introductory comment by Nic Leonhardt.

We would like to thank all authors for sharing their research and ideas and allowing us to publish their stimulating papers.


A warm welcome to Abdul Karim Hakib, new PhD student of our ERC Project “Developing Theatre”

We are very pleased to announce that Abdul Karim Hakib joined the ERC Project “Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945”  in January, 2019. His PhD research will focus on Historicizing Theatre for Development (TfD).

Abdul Karim Hakib was born and educated in Ghana, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) and a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degrees in Theatre for Development. He has been, before joining LMU, a lecturer at the Theatre Arts Department of University of Ghana; the executive director of Global Arts and Development Centre-Ghana, the deputy chair of Arterial Network Ghana Chapter and the General Secretary of the ITI Centre in Ghana.

Karim is a theatre for development practitioner, who specializes in the use of the creative arts and culture for development. He has been engaged in a number of works for and with organizations like Solidaridad West Africa, Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana, Plan Ghana, Theatre for a Change, Africa Adaptation Program on Climate Change, United Nation Organization and UNESCO and other International organizations. He is a fellow of the National Arts Strategies in the USA, a creative community fellows programme that brings together a unique community of innovators committed to using arts and culture to design solutions for community problems. 

Abdul Karim Hakib has directed a number of plays with varied focus and across genres and media. Notable among the works he directed are the Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler, an adaptation of the iconic local Ghanaian movie “I Told You So” for the stage, the Wogbejeke series. He served as the casting director and as a publicist for Dr. Agyeman Ossei’s adaptation of Ayi Kwei Armah’s novels, The beautiful ones are not yet born and Osiris Rising.

His research interest covers Theatre for Development, performance studies, theatre and culture, intangible cultural heritage and performance, theatre and other media, and organizational politics and development.

New chapter out on Global Theatre History (in Middell (Ed.): Routledge Handbook of Transregional Studies)

The Routledge Handbook of Transregional Studies was published just in time for the end of the year. In a chapter of this handbook edited by German historian Matthias Middell, Nic Leonhardt describes the approaches and methodological challenges of Global Theatre History.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Forrest Kilimnik (Leipzig Centre for Area Studies), who was responsible for the careful and patient editing of the contributions to this comprehensive volume.

Nic Leonhardt: “Global Theatre History”, in Matthias Middell (Ed.): The Routledge Handbook of Transregional Studies. London: Routledge 2018, Part VIII: (Trans)cultural studies, Chapter 52.

New Publication Out: Sounding Modernities: Theatre and Music in Manila and the Asia Pacific, 1869-1946 von meLê Yamomo


meLê Yamomo, former PhD student of the Global Theatre Histories research project and Assistant Professor of Theatre, Performance, and Sound Studies at the University of Amsterdam, has just published his PhD thesis Sounding Modernities: Theatre and Music in Manila and the Asia Pacific, 1869-1946.

His project examines the intersection between sound and modernity in dramatic and musical performance in Manila and the Asia-Pacific between 1869 and 1948. During this period, tolerant political regimes resulted in the globalization of capitalist relations and the improvement of transcontinental travel and worldwide communication. This allowed modern modes of theatre and music consumption to instigate the uniformization of cultural products and processes, while simultaneously fragmenting societies into distinct identities, institutions, and nascent nation-states.

His project examines the intersection between sound and modernity in dramatic and musical performance in Manila and the Asia-Pacific between 1869 and 1948. During this period, tolerant political regimes resulted in the globalization of capitalist relations and the improvement of transcontinental travel and worldwide communication. This allowed modern modes of theatre and music consumption to instigate the uniformization of cultural products and processes, while simultaneously fragmenting societies into distinct identities, institutions, and nascent nation-states.

Taking the performing bodies of migrant musicians as the locus of sound, this book argues that the global movement of acoustic modernities was replicated and diversified through its multiple subjectivities within empire, nation, and individual agencies. It traces the arrival of European travelling music and theatre companies in Asia which re-casted listening into an act of modern cultural consumption and follows the migration of Manila musicians as they engaged in the modernization project of the neighboring Asian cities.

meLê Yamomo: Sounding Modernities: Theatre and Music in Manila and the Asia Pacific, 1869-1946. Palgrave-Macmillan (2018).