The Production of Luck

ongoing, PhD Thesis, Department of Art History and Film, University of Sydney. 

This thesis takes the 'The Production of Luck' to be a description of the social role of theatrical technique. It is inspired by an anecdote told by Ian Pidd to our group of Next Wave Festival artists in 2012 about The Snuff Puppet Ramayana producing luck in Yogyakarta, Indonesia in 2007. I suggest 'the production of luck' traces the logic of a living tradition, not just in the presentation of the Hindu epics, but between intercultural theatre contexts. I place my own development as a young artist within the context of intercultural theatre pursuing practical research with historic theatre laboratory Odin Teatret who have been central to the formation of this field. My thesis documents my process of participating in workshops, observational research and theatrical collaborations with this group, reflecting on the process of producing luck from the basis of this experience. It identifies the view of Theatre Anthropology to discovering the materiality of theatre. It develops the auto ethnographic impulse of this field and discusses the material means by which theatre enacts its transformations of social, cultural and psychic dynamics questioning the role of theatricality in the formation of Australia's vernacular identity as 'the lucky country'. 

This research has been supported by the Australian Postgraduate Award, Kath O'Neil Schollarship, Grants in Aid, Doctoral Research Travel Grants and Postgraduate Research Support Scheme.