Performance Research Volume 26 Issue 7

On Air

Issue editors: Evelyn O'Malley & Chloe Preedy

ISSN: 1352-8165 (2022) 26:7

Air is a fundamental, life-sustaining aspect of existence. As a mediating element, air also shapes human modes of expression, including performance. Yet the air has not always received the attention it deserves, with its virtual omnipresence paradoxically making this mostly invisible element all too easy to forget. ‘On Air’ considers how performance might encourage more careful attunement to the air. Both breathing and environmental contexts of atmospheric exposure are central to its concerns, with pieces that consider diverse lived experiences and degrees of vulnerability to this element. Various contributors reflect on the specific implications of COVID-19 for understandings of and interactions with the air, while others discuss how performed responses and negotiations might foreground aerial embodiment. Above all, this issue invites reflection on what it might mean for us, as individuals and communities, to live -- and perform -- in the air.