In addition to my lecturing role, I am the Artistic Director of the Flare International Festival of New Theatre, the Performance Programmer at Axis Arts Centre, and the Artistic Director of Plane Performance, a performance collective formed in 1992 (www.planeperformance.co.uk). My role with Flare has involved directing the Flare Festival in 2011 and 2015, and the Flare Weekender in 2012 and 2014.
I also directed the Manchester International Student Theatre (MIST) Festival (2007), and curated of the Live0 series of graduate showcase events (2001-2007) presented at greenroom, Manchester. As the Performance Programmer of the Axis Arts Centre I am also a member of the Live Art North West (LANWest) programmers network and an Associate Member of Live Art UK.
MA Contemporary Theatre Practice, Lancaster University
BA (Hons) English and Drama, Leicester University
Senior Lecturer (full-time) Contemporary Arts
Manchester Metropolitan University
Senior Lecturer/Chair of Performance Arts
Cheltenham and Gloucester College of Higher Education
Lecturer Performance Arts
Cheltenham and Gloucester College of Higher Education
Shaftesbury Hall Theatre, Cheltenham
BA (Hons) Contemporary Theatre and Performance is a highly distinctive, practical and creative degree that offers a unique opportunity to spend three years exploring, performing and creating new theatre at the cutting edge of the art-form. Intensely practical, supported by careful analysis and critical thinking, the course is organised to take students through a series of performance, compositional and reflective opportunities aimed at expanding their understanding of contemporary theatre and extending their artistic experience and creativity. In year 1 students tackle a range of performer training approaches, areas of practical interest and performance projects, supported by a series of debates, discussions and seminar presentations. In year 2 the focus is on practical approaches to theatrical composition, and developing the students as theatre makers. You also study the practices of leading practitioners, consider areas of cultural and performance theory and develop small group performances and major directed ones. Year 3 includes three intensive performance projects, alongside extended written projects and seminars, and a focus on creative entrepreneurship, arts administration and teacher training options. The degree is taught by a dedicated team of experts in the theory and practice of contemporary theatre, with close connections to professional practice, supported by visiting artists and a dynamic team of technicians who provide regular training and support in all the relevant technology. Students also benefit from 24/7 access to several performance studios, and the presence on campus of the internationally renowned Axis Arts Centre. Recent graduates have gone on to be actors, directors, solo performance makers and performers in international companies, as well as running their own companies and establishing themselves as creative producers, production managers, creative learning facilitators, festival directors, theatre teachers and lecturers and more.
MA Professional Performance Practice (with routes in Dance and Theatre)
This is a taught Masters programme aimed at developing the creative output, understanding and professionalism of contemporary performance practitioners working within and across innovative dance and/or theatre practice whether categorized as Theatre, Dance, Dance Theatre, Performance, Physical Theatre or Live Art. Taught by established practitioners, curators and academics, the programme is aimed at performance arts graduates, or those with equivalent experience, looking to further develop their practice as contemporary performance makers, whilst enhancing their knowledge of, and connections with, the professional networks and contexts available to them in the region, as well as internationally. The programme includes intensive blocks of practical teaching addressing the making of performance and the performer as maker, as well as an artist-led group project, study-based approaches to the critical and professional contexts of performance (integrating work-based learning opportunities), and a major supervised individual project showcased in Manchester.
Crouch, Jason PhD (completed) Mediated Messages: Constructions of intimate communication through the use of digital technologies, and the extent to which such encounters can be conceptualised as one-to-one performance.
With acknowledged expertise in international experimental theatre, my research interests currently divide into two distinct areas within the broad field of contemporary theatre-based performance practice. The first of these engages specifically with the development and application of deconstructive strategies in the relationship of theoretically embedded performance and canonical text in the live theatrical situation, articulated mostly through my performance work with Plane Performance with whom I am director and founder member. For further information, please see the following publications:
Mackenzie, N. (2013) 'Perceptual Instabilities: scenographic and performance dualities, and their impact, in Plane Performance’s Three Sisters', in Shirley, D. and Turner, T (ed.s) 'Performing Narrative: narration,'denarration', fracture and absence in contemporary performance practice' MMU Performance Research Publications, Manchester.
Tomlin, E. (2013) 'Acts and Apparitions - Discourses on the Real in Performance Practice and Theory, 1990-2010' Chapter 5, Manchester University Press
Karen Jürs-Munby, K. (2009) 'Did you mean post-traumatic theatre?: The vicissitudes of traumatic memory in contemporary postdramatic performances', Performanceparadigm.net Issue 5.2 (October 2009)
Turner, J (2007) 'Acts of Creative Vandalism? Plane Performance Deconstruct the Canon' NTQ 23:3 (August 2007)
Lehmann, H-T (2006) 'Post-dramatic Theatre' Routledge
The second area is concerned with performance curation, and draws on my role as Artistic Director/Curator of the Flare International Festival of New Theatre, whilst also drawing on my programming of Axis Arts Centre, and collaboration on the Curating Knowledge project. This area examines recent trends in international avant-garde theatre, and engages in debates around the curation of new theatrical performance and the identification and value of 'aesthetic criteria' utilised in selection.
NK. Mackenzie (2013). Perceptual Instabilities: scenographic and performance 'dualities', and their impact, in Plane Performance's Three Sisters. In: Performing Narrative - narration, 'denarration', fracture and absence in contemporary performance practice.. Institute for Performance Research,
NK. Mackenzie (2017). Watching Flares - Some thoughts on challenging theatre experiences and audience reception. Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, 20/2/2017.
N. Mackenzie (2017). The Flare International Festival of New Theatre, 2017.
NK. Mackenzie (2015). The Flare International Festival of New Theatre, 2015.
C. Boehm, J. Linden, J. Gibson, G. Carver, O. Clennon, et al. (2014). Community, Identity and Locality: Sustainability & impact of university-housed, small-scale arts centres. A panel discussion.
NK. Mackenzie The Flare Weekender 2012 (exhibition).
NK. Mackenzie (2014). The Flare Weekender 2014.
NK. Mackenzie (2013). Three Sisters by Plane Performance, touring theatre practice, presented at University of York St John, University of Central Lancashire, Z-arts Manchester, Axis Arts Centre, Prema Arts Centre Gloucestershire.
NK. Mackenzie (2012). Curating Flare, International performance curation, supported by Arts Council England.
NK. Mackenzie, K. Egan, A. Fenemore (2010). Traviata by Plane Performance, devised theatre composition, presented at the Text and Theatre Symposium MMU Cheshire.
N. mackenzie, J. Linden (2009). Curating Knowledge - a discursive platform that aims to highlight the links between research activity and contemporary arts practices, and takes into account the different relationships the public can have with them.
NK. Mackenzie, P. Wetherell (2009). After Dubrovka, collaborative performance installation and symposium, presented at Grand Theatre Lancaster, Dancehouse Manchester and Phoenix Arts Centre Exeter.
NK. Mackenzie, K. Egan (2008). Manchester International Student Theatre Festival, presented at Greenroom, Zion Arts Centre, Capitol Theatre, supported by Arts Council England, MMU and Greenroom.
NK. Mackenzie (2007). Epilogue by Plane Performance, devised theatre composition, presented at PARIP International Symposium, Bretton Hall, University of Leeds, supported by Arts Council England.
NK. Mackenzie, P. Wetherell (2006). North East, collaborative site-based theatre composition, presented at Greenroom Manchester, supported by Arts Council England.
NK. Mackenzie (2004). Round-about by Plane Performance (Performance).
NK. Mackenzie (2003). Calling Rachmaninov (Performance).
NK. Mackenzie (2002). SET - on watching Brief Encounter (Performance).
NK. Mackenzie (2000). Three Degrees of Frost (Performance).
Text and Theatre International Symposium, Axis Arts Centre, MMU Cheshire, 26/27 March 2010
Live Art UK - Associate Member
LANWest - Member