East 15 Acting School

Our Research

East 15 Research

Championing a spirit of radical curiosity and rigorous experimentation

Our research staff celebrate contemporary theatre practice and challenge established definitions of genre, identity and tradition. Informed by theoretical and historical perspectives, we aim to illuminate the key processes by which innovative performance is formed, performed, produced, consumed and valued in contemporary society. This aim extends East 15's long-recognised emphasis on industry engagement and professional practice into the domain of research.

We are a vibrant and ambitious research community committed to interdisciplinary and partnership working with positive political, social, cultural, and intercultural significance.


We promote a collaborative and inclusive research environment, and our staff work with each other, with industry specialists, and with external partners to generate research with real-world relevance and industry impact.


East 15 research takes many forms including practice as research, practice-based, and text-based enquiry, and we encourage the exploration of new and progressive research methodologies. In addition to individual areas of expertise, our research team shares specialist knowledge in actor-training, theatre-directing, immersive and participatory theatre, embodiment, and intercultural practices.

Research Network

The Screen and Performance Research Network 

The Screen and Performance Research Network constitutes a dynamic research community committed to the production of internationally recognised research that has significant cultural, social and industry impact, that is innovative in form and method, that benefits partner-organisations, and that attracts diverse finding.

The network investigates the making, methods and reception of contemporary performance and screen practices, with activity focused around three research clusters which provide a focus for critical discussion and research collaboration. The Network draws on expertise across East 15, and the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex, and benefits from a close relationship with The Centre for Theatre Research at the University of Essex.

Our clusters are as follows; Lived Experience and Creative Process, Embodiment and Perception, and Global Perspectives and Intercultural Practice. Please see below for more information.


Research Clusters

Lived Experience and Creative Process

Research in this cluster investigates professional creative practices and methods for training (theatre and film directing, movement direction, vocal training, actor training), documentation and analysis of artistic work within different cultural contexts, and the treatment of testimony within verbatim screen and performance practice. 

Embodiment and Perception

Research in the cluster addresses affect and sensory studies as relates to screen and performance, with work addressing: gaming, virtual bodies, and the ethics of participation; immersive experience; touch and intimacy; perception and affect; gender and motherhood; disability and new technologies in artistic practice.  

Global Perspectives and Intercultural Practice

Research in this cluster investigates human rights and social justice; representations of conflict and arts practice within conflict and post-conflict zones, and; intercultural theatre and film practice.

In addition to producing high-quality research projects and attracting large and diverse research funding, the SPRN supports early-career researcher development, provide feedback for colleagues at all career stages, provides a forum for discursive exploration of nascent ideas, instigates new partnerships, responds to industry challenges, and disseminates research through exciting public engagement activities.

Research Showcase

Take a closer look at our current Research projects and gain a thorough understanding of our work through our Research Showcase.

Research Projects

Apply online

Applying for a PhD Course at East 15 Acting School is simple and straightforward. We’ll give you all the important information you need to make your application. Our online application takes about 20 minutes to complete via the University of Essex portal.

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Our research staff

Dr Christina Kapadocha
Lecturer, East 15 Acting School
Dr Eirini Kartsaki
Senior Lecturer, East 15 Acting School
Research interests: feminist performance and live art; repetition; weirdness
Dr Tara McAllister-Viel
Senior Lecturer, East 15 Acting School