In and Out of the Dark: Exposing the ‘immersive’ theatrically

Twitchin, Mischa. 2019. In and Out of the Dark: Exposing the ‘immersive’ theatrically. Performance Research, 24(4), pp. 142-148. ISSN 1352-8165 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

How might theatricality be conceived of in resistance to the siren lures of the ‘immersive’, with their associated claims for ‘active’ audience engagement while they treat ‘traditional’ modes of individuation – through reflective reception – as a hindrance to a ‘total’ experience? How might voguish notions of the ‘immersive’ be simply a contemporary surrogate for avoiding to think through the original creative division – that between light and dark? In its desire to take the ‘theatre’ out of theatricality, might the ‘immersive’ be just another instance of that conditionality from which Michael Fried famously wished to save art? In their attempt to deny the essentially fetishistic character of theatre, might advocates of the ‘immersive’ be less reflective than a four year old child, let alone a Platonising philosopher?

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Identification Number (DOI):


theatricality, immersive

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Theatre and Performance (TAP)


17 September 2019Published

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Date Deposited:

18 Sep 2019 09:02

Last Modified:

18 Sep 2019 09:02

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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