The Spectator's Performing Body:
the Case of the Via Negativa Theatre Project
Tomaž Krpič, New Theatre Quarterly, May 2011
The concept of the performing body consists of two elements: the performer’s and the spectator’s performing bodies. The performer’s body is an active and creative body on stage, while the spectator’s body is considered an uncreative body, passive in his or her seat. In this article, findings regarding the duality of the performing body, its interchangeability, and its intertwinement, derive from researching Via Negativa, a Slovenian-based (yet international in its nature) theatrical project established almost a decade ago by theatre director Bojan Jablanovec. The mission of Via Negativa is to investigate the relationship between the performer and the spectator exclusively through theatrical means. Tomaž Krpič is a sociologist of the body with particular interest in postmodern theatre and performance. He was until recently Lecturer in Cultural Sociology in the Faculty of Social Sciences, Ljubljana University, Slovenia.