Liminoid invitations & liminoid acts: The role of ludic strategies & tropes in immersive and micro-performance dramaturgies

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This paper demonstrates the ways in which certain immersive and micro-performance practices employ ludic strategies and tropes within their dramaturgies and explicates the implications of those dramaturgical devices for the nature and role of the audience. Ludic strategies, such as games, rules and tasks are a central and dominant trope of immersive and micro-performance dramaturgies; they are responsible for the construction of the performance environment, the performer’s presence and activity within that environment and the nature of the audience’s role within that performative frame. I suggest that the games, rules and task strategies that constitute the performance environment and the performer’s role within that can be understood as a liminoid invitation. I consider the ways in which these ludic dramaturgies construct and present a liminoid invitation, that is, ultimately an offer to the audience for participation and play. The liminoid invitations that ludic dramaturgies present generate the potential for their audiences to engage in liminoid acts. The liminoid is forged out of ‘play’ scenarios that sit outside of societal rituals or practices and are therefore entered into as ‘optional’. It is this optionality in analogous contexts that forges the conditions of the liminoid and, ultimately, the liminoid invitations and liminoid acts that characterize immersive and micro-performance dramaturgies as a dominant trope. I unpack these assertions by employing a close analysis of my current PaR, durational micro-performance project Wish Box in order to locate those claims within a phenomenological, materialist approach rather than a purely speculative one.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-59
Number of pages7
JournalPerformance Research
Issue number4
Early online date12 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016


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