Routledge Performance Archive
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Routledge Performance Archive


The Routledge Performance Archive is a developing resource produced in partnership with Digital Theatre, providing unique access to an unprecedented range of audio-visual material from past and present practitioners of performance. This ground-breaking and constantly growing online collection delivers essential resources direct to the classroom, lecture theatre and library. It features technical functionalities and graphics tailor-made by digital pioneers Digital Theatre (, and consists of a regularly updated collection of streamed video and audio footage with relevant critical commentary.

Included here are interviews with key figures in theatre history and contemporary practice; masterclasses with specialist actor trainers from around the world; unique footage direct from the legendary practitioners themselves; excerpted and full-length contemporary productions; and documentaries previously unavailable to global audiences. The video material spans more than fifty years of documented work direct from renowned practitioners and specialists, and ranges across the entire spectrum of theatre topics.

The fully searchable and cross-referenced content will be updated each quarter, with exciting additions coming soon from the Victoria & Albert Museum’s National Video Archive of Performance Recordings, and the British Library’s Experimental Theatre and Live Art Collection.


The Routledge Companion to Theatre and PerformanceIf you want to browse..... you’ll find all the materials in the archive easily accessible via our two initial entry points: an A-Z list of past and present practitioners, and a list of subjects (divided into carefully edited subdivisions, or ‘categories’). Hover your cursor over the individual item you want to browse to reveal a brief pop-up description if you want to find out more.

All the subject definitions within the Archive are taken from The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Performance (London: 2006) by Paul Allain and Jen Harvie, unless otherwise stated. These are identified as From the RCTP throughout and have been cut and edited for the Routledge Performance Archive by Maggie B. Gale. Full versions of these entries and many more are of course available in the book.

Maggie B. Gale has also authored a number of entries, which are credited with her name.

If you know what you’re looking for.... simply enter your preferred search term in the search box and our tailor-made and peer reviewed tagging and keyword system will do the rest. All the contributors to the Archive have been closely consulted and many have contributed their own biographical descriptions and preferred keywords.

If you’re a librarian..... the Routledge Performance Archive supports authentication by IP range, Shibboleth, Athens and user name and password. You can upload your institution’s branding for your users and download reports on searches and sessions. Digital Theatre’s adaptive streaming technology means that video is delivered smoothly to your users and takes full advantage of the available bandwidth. MARC 21 product record available on request.


We have a distinguished Board of Consultants and Advisors:

  • Consultant, Digital Environment – Sarah Whatley, Coventry University
  • Consultant Editor, Academic Content – Maggie B. Gale, University of Manchester
  • Consultant, Digital Curation and Innovation – Toni Sant, University of Hull
  • Sara Jane Bailes, University of Sussex
  • Kate Dorney, Victoria & Albert Museum, London
  • Barbara Hodgdon, University of Michigan
  • Peter Hulton, Arts Archives, University of Exeter
  • Ezra LeBank, California State University
  • Tobin Nellhaus, Yale University
  • Lisa Peck, University of Sussex and Varndean College
  • Peta Tait, La Trobe University
  • Jon McKenzie, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Frank Hentschker, City University of New York
  • Royd Climenhaga, The New School for Liberal Arts, New York


We have one of the most extensive publishing programmes in Theatre and Performance Studies in the world. Our book list spans academic research, primary texts from leading practitioners, and key textbooks for student use. Our collection of journals includes key titles in dance, feminist scholarship, contemporary theatre, applied theatre, and performance training.

Our strong commitment to our unparalleled network of scholars, teachers and practitioners has inspired us to initiate this innovative online resource for the study and practice of theatre and performance.

Future developments of the Routledge Performance Archive include critical commentaries from topic specialists (featuring selected chapters from our backlist relevant to the audio-visual content as well as specially commissioned essays on subjects and practitioners) and links to key journals promotions.

For any inquiries specifically about the content of the archive, please contact: Talia Rodgers, Publisher (, or Harriet Affleck, Editorial Assistant ( Our freelance Project Manager is Sam Kinchin-Smith.


Routledge Performance Archive has been created through a partnership between Routledge and Digital Theatre following two years of dedicated research and development.

Digital Theatre works in partnership with Britain's leading theatre companies to capture live performance authentically onscreen. Using multiple camera angles and high-definition technology, they bring the drama and emotion of each production to a global online audience.

Each production is available to rent online for a limited period or download to your desktop to enjoy as many times as you wish.

Digital Theatre also provides subscriptions for learners with Digital Theatre Plus. Designed specially for students and educators, Digital Theatre Plus brings productions as well as learning resources and exclusive behind-the-scenes interviews with some of the best-known directors, actors, producers direct to the classroom.

Cited as "digital pioneers", Digital Theatre continue to develop new ways of distributing productions including the launch of an app on the Samsung Smart TV platform and screenings at cinemas around the UK and festivals worldwide.

Main image credits:

Homepage Practitioners: Le Cosa 1 by Teatro Sotterraneo. Photograph © Paulo Rapalino

Homepage Subjects: Pocha member Violeta Luna performs as a deranged tour guide during La Pocha’s ‘Mexican Bus’ tour of San Francisco, 2008. Photo © Katia Fuentes

Practitioners list: Odin Teatret Archives. Huampani, Peru, 1988. Photo © Tony D’Urso

Subjects list: Pre-rehearsal workshop with David Zinder and the actors of the Miklos Tompa Theatre, Trgu Mures, Romania, January 2010.

Commentaries list: Ohio Impromptu by Samuel Beckett. Photo © Brent Nicastro. Photo copyright: The Llanarth Group, by permission of Phillip Zarrilli, Artistic Director

News: Brzezinka forest by Celeste Taliani, 2009

Find Out More: Odin Teatret Archives. Work Demonstration: The Echo of Silence, with Julia Varley. Photo © Tony D’Urso

Search results: Guillermo Gomez-Peña by Zach Gross, 2007