Call for Papers: The Intermediality of the Screen: Mediation, Performance, Immersion

Editors: Dr. Ian Robinson (Queen’s University) & Dr. Shana MacDonald (University of Waterloo)

This edited collection aims to catalog, critique, and offer new theoretical and methodological accounts of the intermediality of performance culture and its intersections with screen technologies in the 21st century. Often bridging the spheres of popular culture and art, however defined, intermedial performance encompasses a range of aesthetic, technical and generic forms. The theatre of Robert Lepage makes extensive use of digital screen technologies as narrative devices and immersive technologies of the mise-en-scene. Theatre and live-film companies such as Punchdrunk and Secret Cinema construct intermedial immersive spectacles which demand further layers of participation from the audience. The live animated projection performances of Shary Boyle directly challenge tidy separations between performer, art objects, spectators, and environments. Films such as Rocky Horror Picture Show have a long cultural history of audience participation and the musical’s recent stage remediation in Stratford, Canada, raises questions regarding the ways that affect and collective memory are translated, or bridged, between media. It is the intention of this collection to reframe existing conversations on performance and screen-based practices so that they more directly attend to the on-going intermedial relationship between these forms. This issue hopes to further the dialogue that already exists within the fields of film and media and theatre and performance via examples of formal works which bridge the gaps between them.

The concept of intermediality has been subject to extensive debate in literary and media studies. Jensen’s broad definition of intermediality as “the interconnectedness of modern media of communication” has been influential in considering intermediality as a communicative space or exchange between media (Jensen 279). Rajevsky offers three distinct applications of intermedial phenomena in the arts: media transposition (including adaptation); media combinations (including multimedia, mixed media and intermedia); and media references (including a medium’s imitation of another) (Rajevski 51-52). Moreover, as Rajevski notes, these three categories frequently operate together in a single work. While privileging the theatre as a “hypermedium” Kattenblatt and Chapple locate intermediality at “the intersections and the spaces in-between the intersections” of various media technologies. In their approach, intermediality is found at the “meeting point in-between performers, the observers, and the confluence of media involved in a performance at a particular moment in time” (Chapple and Kattenblatt 24).

For this book, the editors seek contributions which will expand, critique and provide new directions to the ongoing discussion of intermediality and performance in the context of screen-based art. Contributions should consider how intermedial configurations are constitutive of communicative circuits between and among the audience and performance/screen. Questions of audience spectatorship, affect, immersion, and participation are paramount to both theoretical and case study approaches. We welcome contributions which develop and apply theoretical treatments of presence, immersion, play, and the spatio-temporality of performance. We are especially interested in contributions which provide new theoretical and methodological trajectories beyond the discourse of medium specificity. Contributions which explore the intersections of performance and intermediality with issues of gender, class, sexuality, and race will also be welcomed.

Papers may address topics including, but certainly not limited to, the following:

  • Theoretical approaches to intermediality and performance
  • Affect and immersion in intermedial productions
  • Liveness, mediation and the screen
  • Audience reception and spectatorship in intermedial environments
  • Uses of screen technologies in theatre
  • Intermedial adaptations
  • Narration and storytelling between media
  • Set design, mise-en-scene and the production of intermedial environments
  • The politics of intermediality and performance
  • Transnational intermedial environments
  • Intermediality and activism
  • Intermediality in/and indigenous aesthetics
  • Gender, race, sexuality and/or class and intermedial environments
  • Intermediality in/as expressions of the anthropocene
  • Intermediality from posthuman perspectives

We invite chapter proposals of approximately 400 words, with 3-5 bibliographic references.

Please send proposals to the editors at and The deadline for submitting proposals is Dec 15th, 2019 and authors of accepted proposals will be notified by Jan 7th, 2020. Full chapter drafts of 6000-8000 words will be due by June 30th, 2020.


Chapple, Freda and Chiel Kattenbelt. Intermediality in Theatre and Performance. Rodopi: New York, 2006.

Jensen, Klaus Bruhn. “Intermediality” in Wolfgang Donsbach ed., The Concise Encyclopedia of Communication. Malden MA: Wiley Blackwell, 2003.

Rajevski, Irina. “Intermediality, Intertextuality, and Remediation: A Literary Perspective on Intermediality,” Intermédialités, 6 (Fall 2005): 43-64.