Outcomes and Goals

Outcomes and Goals


Cymbeline Anthropocene is a ground-breaking experiment in ecodramaturgy dedicated to representing global ecological relations through consciously situated and culturally differentiated stage adaptions of Shakespeare. It will establish a uniquely valuable ecocritical and performance-studies archive for Shakespeare scholars, theatre practitioners, environmental activist groups, and members of the public.

The project’s public access opportunities will allow communities within and beyond academia to participate in and shape the direction of its creative and intellectual work. Scholars and theatre practitioners will learn about new ecocritical and ecodramaturgical openings which refashion Shakespeare as our Anthropocene contemporary.

Spectator fieldwork will give audiences a personally situated and materially visible stake in the project’s production of knowledge. It will also reveal their agency in the performance event, which is normally occluded in accounts afterwards. By experiencing diverse adaptations of Cymbeline’s environmentally and ethically suggestive storytelling, local audiences will benefit from heightened awareness of their own dwelling spaces and of their biospheric relations.

The archive will document the ecodramaturgical thinking and labour behind the finished stage products, as well as spectator responses. Above all, the project’s collaborative knowledge-creation ethos hopes to exemplify the multilateral co-operation that is needed to address the environmental crises of the Anthropocene, bridging the disciplinary gap between academic criticism and theatrical space, and reaching beyond that to engage the public.

The success of Cymbeline Anthropocene could expand the project’s potential scope to include other works by Shakespeare and extend its partnerships to more theatre companies and researchers, and other Shakespeare- or Anthropocene-related projects.

Scholarly Outcomes

The project’s scholarly participants will benefit from the experience of developing a new model of site-specific performance and audience research that expands the epistemological boundaries of Shakespearian ecocriticism. In addition, the following will be produced over the course of the project:

  • one ecodramaturgical team meeting with some workshopping of theoretical concepts
  • an online open­ access research archive for Shakespeare and theatre studies scholars
  • eight community-based productions of Cymbeline on four continents, generating diverse ecodramaturgical and ecocritical performance research
  • environmentally contextualizing programme notes for the Cymbeline Walk performances
  • spectator research documentation that will expand existing methods of audience fieldwork
  • a symposium of ecocritical and ecodramaturgical analysis, including appraisal by a guest respondent
  • at least two conference presentations and two journal articles

Societal Outcomes

The project’s artistic and public participants will mainly benefit from their interaction with the performances themselves, and with the ensuing public-access discussions that follow, both in person and online. Theatre practitioners involved in Cymbeline Anthropocene will also benefit from the opportunity to produce a play in collaboration with international peers, and from the subsequent exchange of technical, intellectual, and artistic knowledge between all collaborators. The following list outlines the main cultural/societal products of the project:

  • eight artistically and culturally diverse productions of Cymbeline staged before local audiences
  • solicited public responses to the Cymbeline Walk
  • roundtable discussions at the team meeting and following the Cymbeline Walk
  • attendance and participation throughout the discussions and roundtable of the research symposium
  • theatrical and critical discussions at a symposium open to community attendance and media commentary.
  • an open­access archive and interactive website including research and resources, as well as an engaged social media presence by Cymbeline Anthropocene