This strand investigates interaction between languages in the performing arts and the types of creativity this generates. Multilingual performance fosters creativity that is responsive to cultural contexts and audiences. Three case studies will feature different linguistic and cultural constellations: multilingual popular music created and performed in the UK by Black British and British Asian musicians; the ‘highbrow’ Lied performed in the original (often German) to English-speaking audiences; and edgily political Russian theatre ‘translated’ linguistically and culturally to UK stages.

These are some of the research questions we are interested in: How significant is linguistic diversity (including register) for the creative aims of the performers, and what creative processes are involved in negotiating the interaction between different languages in the performance? How significant is linguistic diversity for the audience’s response, and to what extent does their response benefit from involvement of creativity? How do languages and creativity come into play in foregrounding, negotiating, and/or downplaying cultural difference? To what extent is meaning clarified by written or aural and visual media? The questions will be addressed with methodologies drawn from music, theatre, film, media, cultural and performance studies.