Tamur was supported by the Manchester Met Doctoral College Conference Support Award to attend and present at a recent conference. Here he shares the experience. If you would like to apply to the Conference Support Award, the next deadline is Monday 22 July, 5:00pm. The application form and guidance can be found on the Funding page of the Doctoral Student Hub. Please direct all queries to doctoralfunding@mmu.ac.uk

The 10th International Platform of Performer Training conference happened in Tampere, Finland. The conference focused on new techniques in performer development, and the content of my PhD is precisely such an innovative performer training method.  

Finland is situated in the Scandinavian region, where Stanislavskian theatre-making is widely spread, and the conference was participated in by many from central and northern parts of Europe like Poland, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Italy, etc., where the same kind of psychological text-based theatre-making is popular.  I had not yet introduced my new distinctive Zero Zone praxis (ZZ), the outcome of my doctoral research, to this region. The Stanislavski system is one of its grounding disciplines. 

With Stanislavskian text-based theatre making, an autocratic director-centred approach often appears. As this can cause stage fright’s destructive side-effect, and my new praxis is a unique new tool to prevent this well-known negative phenomenon, it got a lively response. The other aspect of ZZ praxis is that it is based on perceptual and executive leadership techniques, which is an unusual approach in theatre directing – cultivating directing. I was honoured to facilitate a 60-minute practical showcase with exercises. ZZ brought recognition and heated up questions, similar to the Finnish traditional sauna with ice pit jumping offered after the academic conference sessions. 

In my studies, this workshop came in the proper phase, during the thesis writing-up, and helpfully allowed me to get the final feedback during a successfully conducted workshop. The conference was an important milestone; my paper was related directly to my doctoral research and will also count towards my academic curriculum vitae. 

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