Dramaturg in Residence - South East Dance

Lou has helped our organisation to consider and clarify what we do, why we do it and how we can do it best. She gently pushes, questions and steps back when needed  - empowering the organisation and the people who work within it.  She has a talent to get to the heart of an idea or challenge, whilst keeping an eye on the big picture; this alongside her creativity, care and enthusiasm brings powerful and unique insight into any working environment.

Elizabeth Mischler, South East Dance (Producer, Artist Development Programme)





Since 2015 it has been my honour to be Dramaturg in Residence at South East Dance.


Here are some words about the journey so far:



Initially, it involved lots of cups of coffee. Off site, in a café nearby, or in the office. Every single member of staff - one to one. And then also  in groups- grouped by departments, projects, issues.


There were questions about how it works, what’s great, where the pride is, when it's at its best, when individuals and groups are at their best, when those/that which we serve are/is best served. And also what is missing, what needs attention, the discomforts, the nagging shadows, the unsaid but often lived.


I was more than once referred to as ‘the HR department’.


Then came reflection. By them, and by me.


Ideas about how, who, when, what, why, why now, why here. What else? How?


Then facilitated sessions, led by me or by them. All of us, or a couple of us. To discuss, to explore, to unearth, to imagine, to allow, to begin again, to build from, to re-articulate, to clarify, to change, to commit, to dream, to hear, to plan, to be exact, true and efficient.


Areas that Organisational Dramaturgy made lasting contributions to were:

  • Articulation of vision
  • Clarity of purpose
  • Branding
  • Articulating the Case for Support
  • Relationships with the community
  • Staff structure
  • Staff Job Titles
  • Board membership
  • Working environment
  • Artistic programmes and projects
  • Identity and curation of festivals
  • Feeding back on ‘audience response’
  • Individual support re articulation, expectations, vision, working practices, position with organisation, playing to strengths
  • Support of senior management 
  • Facilitated discussions  - all staff, departmental, project based
  • Facilitation of public facing events
  • Interlocution with artists
  • and, i think, much more...


It's an ongoing process, and each year has been very different. But it's been an amazing journey and I've learned so much about how much SED care, and hard they graft.


For more information about how a Dramaturg in Residence might serve your organisation - please do contact me.