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Dr Ella Finer


Lecturer in Drama, Theatre, and Performance



I was born and grew up in London in the 80s and 90s, and returned here after being in Glasgow for six years to do my doctoral research at Roehampton researching materialities of the female voice. Landing back in London I realised how quickly the city had changed in so short a time. This awareness of the speed of change - especially relating to who gets to take up space and at what social costs – has stuck with me. I make work with collective the International Western about this speed, about dream-homes in the ruins of the city’s industrial past, and about what we describe as “the technosocial mechanisms of contemporary living” (

Alongside teaching Drama, Theatre and Performance at institutions across the UK, most recently at Kingston and Birkbeck, I make work with sound and produce interdisciplinary events about sound and subjective response. I am Adjunct Professor of Performance Studies at Syracuse University, London and a trustee of Longplayer (

Undergraduate Teaching

In the 2017-18 academic year, I am teaching on:

Postgraduate Teaching

And on the MA Theatre and Performance:


Research Interests:

My primary research interests include: 

  • Sound, voice, gender and the politics of space
  • Feminism, agency and acoustic subjectivities
  • Theories and practices of motion and return
  • Archiving the continuous, the atmospheric and the longplaying
  • Cross-temporal, interdisciplinary methods for developing theory through practice

Recent and On-Going Research

My writing and art practice explores acoustic subjectivities in performance: how the performance of sound constructs and deconstructs identities. My current research project, Other Dimensions: Female Voice and the Politics of Space 1970-2020, considers a ‘politics of resonance’: how female bodies acoustically disrupt, challenge or change the order of who is allowed to occupy – command – space. This will result in a book and a series of curated live installations in 2020. Other current projects include: Selector Responder: Sounding Out the Archives, an evening symposium at the British Library in December 2017 and Women’s Voices in Parliament, a performative symposium at the Houses of Parliament in Spring 2018, collaboratively produced with Dr. Maggie Inchley and Dr. Emma Bennett.



“Far Stretch. Listening as Performance” The Creative Critic: writing as/about practice, eds. Katja Hilevaara and Emily Orley (forthcoming, Routledge).

“”The Aura of the Aural” Performance Research: On Proximity 22.4. edited by Ben Cranfield and Louise Owen  June 2017

“Considering Distances. Staging Voices” L’Annuaire théâtral, Écouter la scène contemporaine, 56-57 (Centre de recherche interuniversitaire sur la littérature et la culture québécoises (CRILCQ) and Société québécoise d’études théâtrales (SQET), June 2016).

“Methodology of Locks” (with P.A. Skantze and Emily Orley). Poetic Biopolitics: Practices of Relation in Architecture and the Arts, edited by Peg Rawes, Timothy Mathews, Stephen Loo (IB Tauris, May 2016).

“Starr’s Sonorous Shadows” &labels, edited by Sophia Hao (The Cooper Gallery, Dundee, February 2016).

“Strange Objects/Strange Properties: female audibility and the acoustic stage prop” Voice Studies: Critical Approaches to Process, Performance and Experience, edited by Ben Macpherson and Konstantinos Thomaidis (Routledge, May 2015).

“Scoring Storms: The Chaotic Air That Does Resist.” Performance Research, On Turbulence (19:5), edited by Paul Carter (Taylor and Francis, November 2014).

“‘The composition is different, that is certain’ - Ophelia Composing Herself.” Kenyon Review Online, Winter 2013 [].


Selected practice:

“Family Album” Performance as part of the British Library’s Season of Sound (British Library, November 2017)

Calling Y “Z”’ An accelerationist play with The International Western (High Fidelity II, Chisenhale Dance Space, November 2016)

‘Playing Host’ Performance documentation (The Shift: Eight Years of the Flat Time House, Flat Time House, April – May 2016).

‘Calling You’ Performance with the International Western (High Fidelity, Chisenhale Dance Space, March 2016).

‘Record’ Animated GIF (Graphics Interchange Format: 25 Years of Focal Point Gallery, Focal Point Gallery, July – September 2015).

‘Calling All’ Performance with the International Western (Primrose Wharf, London, September 2014).

‘Burro Blanco’ Installation with Kitty Finer (Outside of Outside at Mecklenburgh Square, London, curated by Giorgio Sadotti and Liz Wright, October 2013).

‘The Composition is different’ Web-based commission for Performance as Publishing (, October 2013).

‘O’ Installation, (Fig.1, Baltic 39, Newcastle, September 2013).

‘Public Address System’ Commission for Art13 art fair (Art13, Olympia, March 2013).

ʻWhere We Meet, Volumes 1 and 2ʼ Solo exhibition, (Galerie8, London, September 2012). 

ʻBack Strokes Seven Strikesʼ Installation in Giorgio Sadottiʼs This This Monster This Things, (Focal Point Gallery, Southend, April 2012, and Ikon, Birmingham, May 2013). 

ʻVier in der Welle/Four in the Waveʼ Installation with The International Western in Verfreundungseffekt  (Heimatmuseum, London, February 2012). 

ʻA Sound Aside. Composition for a sound of steps of those not hereʼ Performance and Installation (Galerie8, London, November, 2011). 

ʻPlaying Host.ʼ Performance and Installation in Arnaud Desjardinsʼ Back Catalogue, (Bloomberg Space, London, July 2011). 

ʻFacsimiles: Playing Host and Ella Fitzgerald/Ella Mitchellʼ.ʼ Radio Performance on Resonance FM, (Raven Row Gallery, London, July 2011). 

ʻVoice Scores. Facsimiles.ʼ Installation in Resonance FM Open, Gone with the Wind, (Raven Row, London, June – July 2011).  

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