Welcome to Theatre Journal Online.
As the newly appointed online editor of Theatre Journal, I wanted to share a few thoughts with our web-readers. Let me begin by expressing my excitement at being given the opportunity to work with authors and the current editorial team at both Theatre Journal and Theatre Topics, and more widely with colleagues at ATHE. I also wanted to thank my predecessor, Peter Campbell, for establishing our online presence and helping me step into my new role.
This issue features supplementary material by Bess Rowen, Broderick Chow, and Elin Diamond. Each expands on the respective author’s essay published in print by discussing embedded videos and images. You could read them in conjunction with the print issue or as stand-alone pieces. Rowen investigates the New York Neo-Futurists’ reinterpretations Eugene O’Neill’s stage directions in their performance of The Complete & Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O’Neill, volume 1: Early Plays/Lost Plays (2011); Chow creates a playlist of his favorite videos of Filipino performers “mimicking” American pop music; and Diamond presents Melissa Schultheis’s situationist-inspired map of New York City, which illustrates her print contribution.
As well as being part of a special issue on “Directions,” all three essays engage with practices of adaptation and appropriation—that is, the reproduction of existing cultural material for a new audience, and the affective reactions that these practices generate. The New York Neo-Futurists adapt intra-culturally and make audiences laugh, which Rowen suggests is a consequence of the gap between the actions described in O’Neill’s stage directions and their performed affect; Filipino performers appropriate inter-culturally and move their spectators with their virtuosity, which offers Chow the chance to reflect on what he terms “feeling in counterpoint”; and Schultheis’s map updates Guy Debord’s psychogeographic practices for the age of Black Lives Matter, capturing recent moments of spontaneous protest and performance in the streets of New York City.
My aim is for our webpages to cultivate an open-access space complementing our print journal with short and informal pieces about cutting-edge theatre scholarship and practice. I would like each piece to stand on its own, offering a digitally enriched insight into issues covered in the print journal. I am thrilled to begin this new journey with Theatre Journal and look forward to working with authors. If you would like to discuss your ideas for digital-native pieces that take full advantage of the potentials of internet-based publishing, please contact me at email@example.com.