& Performance - Politics, Play & Performance

In the third and final episode of our miniseries, Dr Joe Parslow discusses Politics, Play & Performance with Mountview graduates Mariana Lafón and Gracia Rios. Mariana and Gracia talk about their work in feminist theory and performance practice, and how the use of play and humour can be a valuable tool when approaching traumatic subjects within the arts.

‘& Performance’ is a three-part miniseries which explores the Mountview MA Performance programme and how performance training can be complemented by critical engagement with theory.

Dr Joe Parslow is a researcher, writer and lecturer working across the fields of queer performance practices and queer studies. They teach across drama, theatre and performance, with specialisms in performance research, queer and drag performance practice, and critical theories. They have published writing on the impact of international influences on local drag performance, how contemporary drag competitions challenge notions of neoliberal identity politics and capitalism in drag performance scenes, and the role of queer failure in understanding drag as a mode of queer survival. Beyond this, they have also worked extensively as a producer of performance events in queer nightlife settings, working with a large range of drag, burlesque and cabaret performers including performers from RuPaul’s Drag Race. As well as nightlife settings, they have also produced drag shows in mainstream settings such as the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Their current research projects explore drag performance in digital contexts, and a larger ongoing project examining contemporary manifestations of hope.

Mariana Lafón is an actress and producer. She received an MA in Performance (Acting) from Mountview, as well as a BA in Theatre and Acting from Anahuac University Mexico. She is the writer, director, performer and producer of her most recent work Shaken, which explores the aftermath of two devastating earthquakes that hit Mexico City in 1985 and 2017. Shaken premiered in November 2020 as part of The Latin American Season curated by Untold Collective and in association with The Actors Centre, and returned to The Actors Centre’s Theatre On Demand platform in 2021.

Gracia Rios was born in Malaga. After working for various theatre companies she moved to London to complete an MA in Musical Theatre at Mountview. While studying at Mountview she created The Lesson which has been performed in London as part of Maiden Speech Festival and again at the Old Red Lion Theatre. During the pandemic she has performed The Lesson for the Spanish platform “PROYECTO IMPULSO” and also at Brighton Fringe Festival.

Watch Artistry, Advocacy & Performance with Beth Hinton-Lever and Miiko Toiviainen

Watch Creativity, Criticality & Performance with Tania Nwachukwu

Explore postgraduate training at Mountview.