Dr Richard Talbot

Associate Director, International Conversion/ Senior Lecturer in Performance

Office Times

Monday 1.00pm-2.00pm

Thursday 1.00pm-2.00pm

Text  07899 872215 to book an appointment


I joined the University of Salford in 2010 with a background as a theatre maker and performer. I am co-Artistic Director of Triangle Theatre and  devised the award-winning museum performance project Whissell & Williams. With Triangle I have toured internationally, in repertory theatres (101 Dalmatians, Belgrade Theatre) and at the Edinburgh Festival (Looking for The Tallyman, The Singing Nun, Pa Genhor Med Nina og Frederik). Over the last 10 years I have collaborated with Ridiculusmus on Total Football, Goodbye Princess, How To Be Funny, and The Exhibitionists performing at the Royal Court Theatre, National Theatre Studio, and on tour in Malawi for the British Council. I am currently working on the Wellcome Trust and Arts Council funded production The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland. Film and TV work includes Tribute (dir. Debbie Isitt) and Noble & Silver (Ch4). I completed an AHRC funded PhD investigating clowning and archival practices in 2008 and was Leverhulme Artist-in-Residence at Roehampton University in 2010 working on the Olympiad related project Knickers & Vests. I am currently funded by Heritage Lottery Funding through the Connected Communities project and UnLtd Social Enterprise to established a contemporary devised performance group for older people and people with mental health issues.

Twitter: BA_Performance

Facebook: Frank Whissell

Academia.edu: Richard Talbot


I am interested in ‘in-role’ teaching. My teaching on the Comedy Performance Techniques module is presented in-role as the clownish Kurt Zarniko. For the last 10 years I have taught Immersive Museum Performance methods at the university, for museum in Northern Ireland, Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney and the National Trust, often using the persona Mr Whissell, a 1940s civil servant. This method is influenced by durational performance practices in Contemporary Performance and by an approach to teaching drama pioneered by Dorothy Heathcote.

See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNTl51qI7yo

My research interests in Immersive Performance have been applied to Level 5 Performance Projects in a collaboration with Ordsall Hall and Lowry Theatre (specifically the In On The Act Festival).

In the 2013/14 academic session I regularly produced and directed student productions - Loveplay by Moira Buffini (dir. Louise Bush); Light in The Village by John Clifford (dir. Trevor Macfarlane) and The Feast (dir. Carran Waterfield, Triangle). I am teaching or supervising the following modules

Theatre Projects BA Level 6

Practical Research Projects Level 6

Performance Project (Professional Practice) Level 5

Comedy Performance Techniques Level 5

Performance Skills Level 4

I am currently supervising PhDs in Northern Comedy; Women and Stand Up; Jean Luc-Nancy and the Ensemble; Symbolic Interactionism and Processes of Embodiment.

Research Interests

Contemporary Performance; Clowning; Immersive and Participatory Theatre; Comedy Performance and Mental Health; Performing Heritage; In-Role Pedagogy

My current practice-as-research is connected to my role in the development of Ridiculusmus’ touring project The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland. The project investigates Comedy Performance and Mental Health in partnership with Psychiastrists, especially Jaakko Seikkula and the Open Dialogue practitioners in Tornio, Finland, Social Workers (Dr Ian Cummins, Lecturer in Social Work in the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work) and is theatre makers.

This builds on recent research with Dr Debbie Roberts (University of Wrexham) on the ethics and education of performing care.

Qualifications and Memberships

Joint Artistic Director of Triangle Theatre Company

Associate Artist, Pantheatre, France

BA (Hons) Japanese Studies, First Class (Sheffield, 1991);

MA Theatre Studies with Distinction (Leeds, 1994);

Postgraduate Certificate in Research Practice (Nottingham Trent, 2005);

PhD Drama, Theatre & Performance (Roehampton, 2009).

Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Practice and Research (Salford,2011).

FHEA (2011).


Journal Article:

Devising Ridiculusmus’ Total Football: a schematic reading of performance process. Journal of Studies in Theatre & Performance. London: Routledge (forthcoming Spring 2014)

Book Chapters:

‘She Wants You To Kiss Her - Negotiating Risk in the Immersive Theatre Contract’ In Freize, J (Forthcoming Spring 2014) Framing Immersive Theatre. Oxford: Palgrave Macmillan.

Andrews, N and Talbot, R. (2010) Triangle's Immersive Museum Theatre: performativity, historical interpretation and research-in-role. In Jackson, A and Kidd, J (Eds). Performing Heritage: research, practice and development in museum theatre and live interpretation. Manchester, MUP.


Talbot, R and Waterfield, C. (2005) Triangle's Work in Times of War. Palatine

Performance papers

2013 ‘She Wants You To Kiss Her - Negotiating Risk in the Immersive Theatre Contract’  TaPRA (Theatre & Performance Research Association) Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow


International Society for the Study of Narrative, Manchester Metropolitan University.

2011, Learning to Act Like A Nurse Education in a Changing Environment conference, Salford with Dr Deborah Roberts Reader in Nursing, University of Wrexham shortlisted for Elsevier Healthcare prize.

2010. ‘Knickers & Vests: parody, failure, embarrassment and the Olympics.’, panel with Lucy Amsden, and Maggie Irving, Playing For Laughs, De Montford University, Leicester, 6 February.

2009. ‘Knickers & Vests - Embarrassment, Painful Memories and Participatory Performance’. Painstaking Performances, panel with Ed Scheer and Milija Gluhovic, , Misperformance, Misfitting, Misfiring, PSi 13, New York University, 8th –11th November.

External Links

Talbot, R. (2008) The Clown Who Lost His Memory: Multiple Faces of the Clown in Practice and Theory Online. [accessed 14 Feb 2010].

Triangle Theatre Company. Website. Online. [accessed 14 Feb 2010].