“All the world’s a stage”, Shakespeare famously claimed, “and all the men and women merely players”. Today, we witness new species of players entering the world-stage as social robots are becoming increasingly part of the performance of everyday life and work. Making robots better equipped to interact and collaborate with humans (who will generally not have special skills or training to operate them) requires cross-disciplinary approaches that combine technological expertise with insights from the social sciences, humanities, and the arts. In this context, a lot is to be gained from the expertise and knowledge from the theatre whereas, vice versa, current developments in robotics open new terrain for theatre-makers exploring the possibilities of these new technological performers and investigate the possibilities and implications of a future of living with them.
Performing Robots brings together experts from the theatre and robotics for joint research, expert meetings and other collaborations. Click here for more information on our research projects Acting Like a Robot and Unbecoming Robot and the Theatrics of Brokenness: On the Performativity of Technological Defects in Robot Theatres and Beyond.