Doppelgangster’s everybody loses: a dramaturgy for extinction

PAYNE, Thomas and MANDERSON-GALVIN, Tobias (2022). Doppelgangster’s everybody loses: a dramaturgy for extinction. Critical Stages/Scènes Critiques (26).

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In 1957, the eminent herpetologist Dr Karl Patterson Schmidt was bitten by a juvenile boomslang snake (Dyspholidus typus) at the Chicago Natural History Field Museum. Over the next twenty-four hours, he recorded his increasingly horrifying symptoms in what was to become his ‘death diary’ (Buck). In UK/Australian performance company Doppelgangster’s seventy-five-minute stage performance Everybody Loses: The Death Diary of Karl Patterson Schmidt (2017), Schmidt’s account (Pope 1958) provides a narrative framework through which to interrogate the meta themes of climate change and the sixth great extinction. By staging Schmidt’s catastrophic death and inviting spectators to ‘linger’ with the performer in the space between, myriad ecological antagonisms are enacted. In this essay, co-creators Tobias Manderson-Galvin (MKA Theatre of New Writing, Melbourne) and Tom Payne (Sheffield Hallam University) draw upon Timothy Morton’s concept of “dark ecology” (2018) and the “dark ecology of elegy” (2012), as well as thinking from within the field of Performance Studies, to explore, situate and extend the “ecological thought” made apparent in Everybody Loses. In doing so, they offer an innovative dramaturgy for extinction.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 3604 Performing arts
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2023 13:05
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2023 17:17

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