Soraya Nabipour

BA (Hons), MA

School of English

Research Student

  • BA Theatre and Performance Studies, (First-Class Honours) University of Warwick, 2011
  • MA Theatre and Performance Studies, (Distinction) University of Sheffield, 2016
Research interests
  • Experimental Performance
  • Spectatorship
  • Sculpture
  • Visual Art
  • Minimalism

Current research

A laboratory of the self: Complicating notions of selfhood in post-postmodern theatre and performance

Generatively drawing on the work of director and playwright Richard Maxwell, the artistic lead of downtown experimental theatre company New York City Players, my practice- based research enquiry will create and critically evaluate new forms of post­- postmodern performance.

I examine Maxwell’s work in light of the philosophy and aesthetic values of the artistic movement of Minimalism and investigate the distinct mode of spectatorship which emerges from the audience’s interaction with the raw materials or art ‘objects’ of the production: the individual performer, text, space and time.

I propose that encountering the work of New York City Players through the revelatory lenses of ‘sculpture’, ‘minimalism’, and ‘visual art’ manifests ‘spectatorship’ itself as a material of the performance, generated by the individual audience member’s engagement with the artwork.

This perspective complicates notions of representation in current contemporary performance and extends possibilities for the transformative capacity of spectatorship and performance as a space of emancipation and activism.

Research group


  • Dr Frances Babbage
  • Dr Carmen Levick