'It’s not just about technology!': creativity as a driving force for nurturing the development of skills for digital performance

Aleksandra Webb*, James Layton

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Covid-19 pandemic enforced a rapid migration to digital performance making due to a long period of restrictions and closures of performance venues. Despite very limited provision for digital skills training in the HE performing arts programmes prepandemic, and the lack of skills, tools and resources encountered by makers during the lockdowns, many examples of innovative digital practice emerged during this time. This paper looks at three cases of innovative performances that emerged during the pandemic out of necessity. These cases suggest that digital skills and competences are very important for performance makers, but making successful digital performance is not necessarily dependent on the mastery of specific technical skills but rather a creative use of digital technologies. As the HE sector still comes to terms with what digital skills are and how they might be delivered in the higher educational setting, this paper aims to inform discussion about training for future performers/performance makers so they can effectively fulfil the current and future opportunities ‘the digital’ offers to them. Nurturing creativity and encouraging experimentation seems crucial to the future development of digital performance and we advocate educators keep this at heart when adopting new (digital) performance pedagogies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)386-404
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Performance Arts and Digital Media
Volume19
Issue number3
Early online date18 Jun 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jun 2023

Keywords

  • digital skills
  • digital performance
  • digital creativity
  • digital practice
  • performance innovation

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