Performing Collaboration in Solo Performance (Book)

A Duet Without You and Practice as Research

Edited by Chloé Déchery Series edited by Patrick Duggan

Includes the full-length performance score of A Duet Without You, an original piece of collaboratively devised theatre by performance artist and scholar Chloé Déchery. Also includes a series of essays and critical responses from leading theorists and theatre-makers and a template performance score designed for anyone wanting to reinterpret the new original score and perform their own version. 15 b/w illus.

Category: Performing Arts
Series: Playtext


The book provides an investigation grounded in performance practice and practice-as-research methodology on the issues of authorship and collaborative labour.  This investigation is set in the context of a world more and more characterized by fragmentation, displacement and virtual communication and relationships. It addresses and playfully engages with the following questions: what is a collaborative body? How can one sole performer enact and convey a collaborative practice? How can one body on stage carry out several voices at once? Can we stand in for others? How do we maintain a sense of ‘being-together’ while being alone in a room?

The book contains the full-length definitive version of the performance score from A Duet Without You, an original performance piece created between 2013 and 2015 by Chloé Déchery in collaboration with a range of high-profile artistic collaborators working inter- and cross-disciplinary, including Karen Christopher (Goat Island), Michael Pinchbeck, Deborah Pearson (Forest Fringe), Simone Kenyon and Pedro Ins.

In addition to the main performance score, another original text has been produced and is included as a ‘template’ version of the script to be adapted and enacted by existing or potential future collaborators – the idea being that any reader could appropriate and reinterpret a version of the performance score and create their own personalised rendition of the show.

Besides these two new and original performance scores, there is a complementary collection of essays, ranging from performative responses and co-authored articles to in-depth theoretical essays, written by a selection of pre-eminent writers, artists and academics.

Primary readership will be those teaching, researching or studying in theatre and performance studies, visual arts, fine arts, art history, creative writing, poetry, philosophy or French literature.  Will also be of interest to art school students and those with an interest in theatre.

Chloé Déchery is a lecturer in theater and performance studies at the University of Paris 8 in Saint- Denis, France. Her research interests include everyday corporeality and embodiment in contemporary performance, experimental theater, and choreography in Europe.

  1. A Foreword by senior lecturer Laura Cull 
  2. Dialogic examination of Situated Dramaturgy and Practice-as-Research by Chloé Déchery and Michael Pinchbeck 
  3. A Duet Without You, by Chloé Déchery, in collaboration with Pedro Ines, Simone Kenyon, Deborah Pearson and Tom Parkinson 
  4. A Duet Without You, a template and instruction-led performance score, by Chloé Déchery 
  5. 'An Invitation to Dance – Chloé Déchery’s A Duet Without You', by Mary Paterson 
  6. 'On Duets and Duets without a partner', by Karen Christopher 
  7. Letter-writing on A Duet Without You with Diana Diaman
  8. 'On Marguerite Duras and A Duet Without You', by Clare Finburgh
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