Theatre and Persona: Celebrity and Transgression
Theatre, with its focus on live performance and the particular interest it places on the performer as creative agent, undoubtedly brings a distinctive set of enriching perspectives to the field of persona studies, which has often acknowledged its debt to performance studies and theories of performativity (see, for instance, Marshall & Barbour 2015). Despite some notable forays into the area of persona and (live) artistic performance made by scholars in this journal (see, for instance, Piper 2015; Colby 2015; D’Cruz 2015), work that specifically addresses the multi-faceted uses and disuses of persona in theatre and its often radically transgressive potential is still conspicuously under-represented in a vibrant and swiftly expanding field. As guest editors of this special issue for Persona Studies, we are delighted to make a substantial intervention in bringing some of the theories and practices of theatre studies to persona studies. Likewise, the lens of persona studies concentrates analysts of theatre on interrogations that are fundamental to the discipline and to advancements in the notoriously difficult articulation of acting and the embodied performance of self and other.
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