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CSAR Events

Audience at a Concert

Join us at this year's Canadian Association for Theatre Research Conference

We will be running a workshop, "Wading into Audience Research" at this year's Canadian Association for Theatre Research conference in Halifax, running June 15-17th, 2024. Submissions close May 1st, though we're happy to consider late applications. We welcome applications from both audience research newbies and pros!

EVENT: Artists on Audiences: Three Ontario Artistic Directors Discuss

Sponsored by the University of Toronto Mississauga Department of English and Drama

Friday March 24th, 2:30-4:30pm at the University of Toronto Mississauga Campus

Image by Brooke Cagle

Working Group Sessions

The CSAR working group offers artists and scholars an opportunity to receive feedback on work in development, to discuss research-related ideas, or to engage with readings in the field of audience studies.

For working group sessions, presenters will propose a topic. Topics can be works/ideas that are created by the presenter (a draft of an essay, a portion of a book chapter, a data set etc.) or presenters can propose a reading they wish to discuss in-depth. In coordination with the presenters, CSAR organizers will curate an extended discussion of the proposed topic.

Working group sessions will be hosted by CSAR directors and open to members of the CSAR mailing list. We anticipate small, focused, discussions, which offer an opportunity for intellectual conversation and collegial engagement. 

Upcoming Dates

Working group sessions will take place on Zoom on Thursdays from 2pm-3:30pm Eastern Time (UTC -5) on the following dates:

  • Thursday February 2nd, 2:00-3:30pm ET: Practical Spectating - engaging [with] theatre in a post-audience era

    • Join us for our upcoming working group session with Dr. Elizabeth Swift. Dr. Swift will present and workshop her book proposal, Practical Spectating - engaging [with] theatre in a post-audience era.

  • Thursday February 16th, 1:30-3:00pm ET: Mário Fonseca

    • Join us and PhD student Mário Fonseca

Stay tuned for news of an exciting in-person session in March

Sessions are open to all; to receive the Zoom link, RSVP below.

Previous Dates

Previous working group sessions took place on:

  • Thursday October 20th, 2022 - 2:00-3:30pm ET: Let's Talk Ethics

    • Join us for our to chat all things ethics: institutional research ethics boards, policy statements, processes, challenges and opportunities. We'll share examples and discuss "Ethics and Audience Research: By the book or on the hop?" by Katya Johanson and Hilary Glow from the Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts (citation below).

      • Johanson, Katya and Hilary Glow. "Ethics and Audience Research: By the book or on the hop?" Matthew Reason., Lynne Conner, Katya Johanson, and Ben Walmsley. Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts. Milton: Taylor & Francis Group, 2022, pp. 374-390.

  • Thursday November 24th, 2022 - 2:00-3:30 ET: Audience Research in Politically/Socially-Engaged Theatre in Kolkata

    • Join us and PhD Candidate Munia Debleena Tripathi to discuss her dissertation research on audiences of politically/socially-engaged theatre in Kolkata. Tripathi' research, "aims to produce an accessible ‘tool kit’ for early-career theatre-makers in the city who want to produce political/socially-engaged performances, especially those who aim to create a theatre that is accessible (in the broadest sense of the term) to non-elite audiences."

      • Attendees are invited (but not required) to read the first two chapters of Contemporary Group Theatre in Kolkata, India (2020) by Arnab Banerji


  • Thursday December 8th, 2022 - 2:00-3:30pm ET: Discussion with Dr. Sara Hoover.

    • Join us and Dr. Sara Hoover to discuss hework. Statement from Dr. Hoover: "As theatre-makers and researchers increasingly attend to the agentive and embodied role of the audience, what methodologies can be drawn from artistic research and audience research to create a scaffolding for mixed-method projects that focus on the relational, complex knowledge-making processes of theatre? This discussion seeks to explore the potentials and pitfalls of integrating these two methodologies to develop research projects in which the audience’s effort is recognized as citizen-research and the results are recognized as artistic contributions. In particular, as reflection is common to methods from both fields, it centres reflective moments and processes as they can be incorporated into theatrical events such that the contributions of audiences are celebrated and the knowledge they create disseminated both inside and outside the academe."

Writing with Pen

Propose a Working Group Session

If you are interested in being a presenter, please send us an email with the following information: 

  • Your Name: 

  • A brief description of your proposed topic (75-250 words)

  • Your preferred presentation date (as per the schedule above). 


We'll do our best to engage all interested folks, but due to scheduling constraints, we may not be able to accept all proposals.

Send all proposals and questions to:

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