A new dramaturgy for digital technology in narrative theater

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Rouse, Rebecca
Bolter, Jay David
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Many contemporary theater practitioners and scholars agree that the investigation of the relationship between digital technologies and theater is an important yet relatively unexplored topic, both in theory and practice. A debate regarding the fundamental nature of performance and more specifically the quality of liveness in the face of media has been the dominant conversation on this topic. While the liveness debate is important, it is not the only angle from which to approach questions of specific types of technology and performance. This dissertation takes a different approach, while taking the liveness debate into account. This dissertation examines relevant historical and contemporary theory and practice in the area of digital technology in theater, and then describes a new method of practice and analysis in the form of a new dramaturgy. This new dramaturgy is then applied to examples of selected work and also used hands-on to create a two-part case study to try out its usefulness in practice. The first part of the case study is a production design created with the new dramaturgy in collaboration with undergraduate students within the context of a special topics course. The second part of the case study is a full-scale production by a professional director, incorporating elements of the production design created in the first part of the case study.
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