Workshop: Wading into Audience Research
Call for Workshop Participants: Wading into Audience Research
In-person workshop (preceded by group attendance at a performance) at Performing Shores/ The Shores of Performance: The Canadian Association for Theatre Research conference at Dalhousie University (June 15-17, 2023)
Organized by The Centre for Spectatorship and Audience Research
Significant exploration of the choppy waters and distant shores of audience reception can be a
fraught and overwhelming task. It’s easy for the novice to lose their way among the policies and
practicalities of spectatorship studies (Reason). In response, increasing numbers of audience
researchers are venturing into these waters, hoping to broker equitable encounters between
researchers, spectators, and theatre makers. This in-person workshop facilitated by the Centre
for Spectatorship and Audience Research (Kelsey Blair, Kelsey Jacobson, Signy Lynch, Scott
Mealey, and Jenny Salisbury) invites new and experienced audience researchers to join us on a
Maritime spectatorship adventure with the goal of expanding our participants’ methodological
Workshop participants will attend a theatre performance together during the conference.
Then, using the polyvocal, mixed methods approach featured in our article from “From Site to
Self” (Blair et al.) workshop participants will complete a survey and interview each other about
the production at a post-performance session on audience research. The workshop will also highlight critical and ethical approaches to audience research and engage participants in an
evaluation of current methods.
To apply, please send a short (150-200 word statement) on your interest in and experience (if
any) with audience research to firstname.lastname@example.org by May 1, 2023. We
welcome participants at all levels of their academic careers (from students to senior scholars),
and with all levels of audience research experience. This workshop will undergo Research Ethics
Board approval (and if you don’t know what that means or entails, we’ll talk about that, too).
Blair, K., Jacobson, K., Mealey, S., and J. Salisbury. “From Site to Self: Immersion, Audience
Research, and Polyvocality.” Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, vol. 36, no. 1 (2021), pp.
Reason, Matthew. “Introduction to Part 2: Participations on Participation: Researching the
“active” theatre audience.” Participations vol. 12, no. 1 (2015): pp. 271-280