New research in TRIE:

Toward developing workshops and trainings in the area of the European Critic


TRIE is now moving in the direction of developing workshops and trainings in the area of the European Critic. This new direction is born from the fact that the acquisition of an international theatre magazine in January 2016 (please click on the magazine page of this website for further information) shifted TRIE from a local Luxembourgish production-and expressive arts -based research unit (which included my private practice as an Arts Therapist) to a theatre Think Tank which will address the concept of the European Critic in addition to providing traditional training workshops.

To revitalise the role of the arts critic, specifically but not exclusively the theatre critic, is the main goal of the European Critic platform. It is a project that intends to encourage changes in how critics are educated and how they find employment. It is a reality-based and comparative approach that teaches how varying national economic and cultural systems foster certain kinds of dramatic expression and certain kinds of theatre. The comparative approach requires a critic who is versed in several European languages and has an excellent working knowledge of other European cultures and arts economies. The critic trained as a European critic can then offer an in-depth analysis of cultural productions of all sorts (specifically theatre) which is dependent neither on the sharp pen or flowery praise of newspaper arts journalism of former times nor on the alarming superficiality of online arts journalism of the present time. Instead, the new critic, the European critic, can offer insight into theatrical production not immediately accessible to entertained audience members. The opportunity for interaction between critic and performance group is thus positively enhanced, and the benefit lies in an increase in awareness of motivating forces behind the creation of works of (theatrical/performance) art.

Naturally, the concept of the European Critic can easily be converted into that of the International Critic. Always, such an individual would have an education tailored to include advanced linguistic skills in at least two non-native languages and a concomitant knowledge of the cultures in which these languages are spoken – culture defined as not simply faith-bound and ethics-bound but also as economic and political.

I made a public presentation of the idea of the new critic, the European Critic, at the Cluj-Napoca Theatre Festival in Romania during the week of 6 to 13 October 2018. A workshop on experimenting with dramatic form will take place on 20-22 September 2019. This workshop will provide a weekend training in a small group setting – see September Workshop Details

Developing out of this new approach, TRIE is also aiming to offer a European and International Critic conference in an as yet unnamed European country as of 2020/21. Please stay tuned!!

           DrPhil Dana Rufolo, director of TRIE  

            Editor of Plays International & Europe