Welcome to the Performance Research Unit

The Performance Research Unit promotes advanced research in theatre and performance. Current research strengths include gender and performance, practice research, and performance-making. Our research engages with performance in all its manifestations: the aesthetic, the everyday, the cultural and the social.

The PRU brings together researchers with unique expertise in the areas of:

  • Gender and Performance
  • Writing for Performance
  • Site-Specific and Ecological Performance
  • Reception Studies in Classical Greek and Roman theatre
  • Phenomenology and Performance Philosophy
  • Audience and Reception
  • Celebrity and Representation in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
  • Autoethnography
  • Storytelling
  • Indigenous and First Nations Performance

Members of the PRU, as writers, directors and actors continue their professional engagement with the arts industry. This creates an environment of cutting edge practice research, which places the PRU at the forefront of this crucial area of the creation of new knowledge.

Some Helpful Links

Helpful Books, Articles and Databases


Monash University Centre for Theatre and Performance

PhD (Theatre and Performance) Course Overview

Faculty of Arts Research Page


Australasian Association for Theatre, Drama and Performance Studies (ADSA)

  •   An overview of performance / production projects currently being undertaken by post graduate students within the Performance as Research Unit . Read more
  • This research seeks to engage with the following questions:        1. How can/does space and place inspire and channel the creative journey of a performance writing piece by a non-Indigenous Australian in the Australian (post) colonial context?        2. What is specific to Australian experience of landscape, spaces and places reflected in my own work ... Read more
  • This research investigates the contemporary relevance of classical dance movement vocabulary and choreographic techniques in an Indian context, with a special focus on artists who have been intensely trained in Bharatanatyam. The output will be in the form of a public performance and a critical commentary. The written component of this PhD will provide a ... Read more
  • With a working title of Seeking Dorothy: In the Land of OZ, this research will create a picture of the changing attitudes in society during the first seven years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Sydney, Australia. A Verbatim play and an accompanying critical commentary are the anticipated final products of this research. Both will reflect ... Read more
  • This research seeks to establish some effective pathways to revitalize the Bangladeshi Jatra. My study explores the factors affecting Jatra’s sustainability as well as the ways to overcome the challenges it currently faces. This research has a documentary component which will reflect upon the current status of Jatra and offer possible pathways for revitalizing the ... Read more
  • This research project seeks to examine and extract the qualities of “inescapability” found in selected Sri Lankan ritual traditions and apply them to contemporary theatrical practice. Name of Researcher Indika Ferdinando Name of Project Creating an inescapable theatre experience by adapting the theatrical potential of Sri Lankan Ritual Performance for the Modern Theatre Year of Project Current/Ongoing Name of Supervisor/s (if applicable) Dr. ... Read more
  • This research examines the current status of Bangsawan in Malaysia’s contemporary theatre scene, using the project Semarak Bangsawan as a case study. Semarak Bangsawan (The Invigoration of Bangsawan) is a project organized by Jabatan Kebudayaan dan Kesenian Negara (JKKN ), a government agency in the Ministry of Information, Communication, and Culture ... Read more
  • This practice-led research project aims to effectively represent Sri Lankan cultural identity through folk drama elements in the commercial stream theatre outside of its homeland. The researcher seeks to develop terms and a conceptual framework for Sri Lankan theatre which negotiates with other cultures in non-South Asian cultural spaces. The project will test this framework ... Read more
  • This project represents ongoing research in the adaptation and presentation of the Anglo-Saxon text Beowulf for contemporary audiences. The research spans 10 years and has extended over 3 continents.  The 2004 performance represents the first performance of this translation in Australia.  The ongoing performances of this translation facilitate a dialogue between past performances and the ... Read more
  • Dr Jane Montgomery Griffiths will play the lead role of Alex in Wild Surmise. Photo: Garth Oriander A dramatic adaptation of a verse novel by one of Australia’s most inventive poets will feature a Monash University staff member in the lead role. Dr Jane Montgomery Griffiths from the Monash Department of Theatre and Performance will play Alex in ... Read more
  • Research Awards & Prizes Will Peterson, Special Commendation Marlis Thiersch Award 2011 Australasian Association for the study of Drama, Theatre & Performance Studies (ADSA) award for the best article or chapter for “Performing Indigeneity in the Cordillera: Dance, Identity and Politics in the Highlands of Luzon.” Asian Theatre Journal 27.2 2010. Jane Griffiths, Dean’s Award for Media ... Read more