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Date(s) - 14/03/2017
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

eLab, Mediastudies (BG1)


With presentations by:

  1. Dr. Nic Leonhardt (LMU Munich)
  2. Dr. Frans Blom, dr. Rob van der Zalm, and Jan Vos BA (UvA)
  3. Prof.dr. Julia Noordegraaf, dr. Claartje Rasterhoff, and Vincent Baptist BA (CREATE – UvA)

For absracts see below:

  1. Dr. Nic Leonhardt (LMU Munich)

Global Clicks through Theatrescapes

Digital Humanities meet Theatrical Pasts

In this paper, I am going to address features, benefits and challenges of Digital Humanities related to theatre and performance studies, and theatre historiography in particular. Using digital tools for historical research has become quite popular during the previous decade: countless individual and institutional DH projects mushroomed, and DH meanwhile have become a subject of study at many universities.

A well designed database, complex at the back-end, but with a pretty and easy-to-use interface is something we all dream of for it helps us illuminating our research material and findings, it glamourizes, if you want, our work. But far from being a decorative asset only, digital tools can help us challenging our methodologies and reconsidering allegedly verified knowledge. Hence, there are two aspects that I consider the most challenging and fruitful parameters of DH in our field, which I would like to discuss with colleagues at the „CREATE Salon“, and this is

  • building new communities or strengthening existing ones, which comes with questions of accessibility and a shifting working mode of scholars and curators;
  • creating, gaining and also rewriting knowledge, which cannot be thought of without taking the historicity of DH, paradigmatic shifts and questions of democratization into consideration.

After a brief overview of DH in Theatre Research, I shall introduce into two digital projects that we developed under the umbrella of the DFG Koselleck project “Global Theatre Histories” at LMU Munich: Theatrescapes, the digital sister project to GTH, and Theatre & Globalization, a massive open online course (MOOC). Based on these case studies, I would like to discuss how the ongoing digitization of source materials from the 19th and 20th century (such as books, newspapers, and images), along with widening access to databases and innovative technological tools and platforms for sharing data, can allow us to retrace aspects of translocal theatrical exchanges that might contribute to the revision of theatre history and historiography.





Nic Leonhardt is senior researcher and associate director of the ERC (=European Research Council) project “Developing Theatre” at LMU Munich, PI “Theatrescapes. Mapping Theatre History” (LMUexcellent), and Co-Director Centre of Global Theatre History. She is also the editor of The Routledge Companion to Digital Humanities in Theatre and Performance (2017). Her research interests and activities are theatre and media history and historiography, urban studies, visual culture and digital humanities.


2. Dr. Frans Blom, dr. Rob van der Zalm, and Jan Vos BA (UvA).

Amsterdam City Theatre Repertoire and ONSTAGE, 1638-2016

The ONSTAGE database contains information on the Amsterdam City Theatre for the period 1638-1772. We are currently adding data on repertoire from 1772 onwards, on the basis of advertisements, yearbooks, programme books, etc.. By using digital analysis and visualisation tools we can now research specific questions with regards to tastes of the local audience, the coming and going of plays, canonization, fixed plays on fixed days in the year, but also more general questions about European theatre networks and the identity of Amsterdam as a creative city.

3. prof.dr. Julia Noordegraaf, dr. Claartje Rasterhoff, and Vincent Baptist BA (CREATE – UvA).
MEPAD: Mapping European Performing Arts Databases
The project MEPAD develops an inventory and analysis of existing European databases and research projects on theatre, music, and film performances (1600-present). By analysing and comparing data models and ontologies across the different datasets and disciplines, we work towards a shared research agenda on the data-driven history of performing arts, and ultimately, a European Performing Arts Dataverse.

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