Of Lofts, Evidence and Mobile Times: The School Play as a Site of Memory

Mackey, Sally (2012) Of Lofts, Evidence and Mobile Times: The School Play as a Site of Memory. Research in Drama Education: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance, 17 (1). pp. 35-52. ISSN 1356-9783


How do we remember past arts events? What forms of tangible evidence exist to demonstrate such memories and what meanings can be taken from the archiving of artefacts in contemporary times? The research discussed in this article showed that a school production taking place 20 years ago is remembered as a significant event in the lives of its participants with physical objects associated with the production stored and preserved by most of the original company members. What is the role or function of this memorabilia in their lives? How can the hoarding of such evidence be interpreted? In pursuing these questions, I interrogate emotional responses to objects from the past by way of a visit to a loft and ask why material artefacts from the past appear to retain such importance, particularly for those acclimatised to a virtual age. An interpretation of this evidence-demonstration is offered in the final sections of the article that we archive and store certain moments of our histories to counterbalance an increased mobility. These collections perhaps represent sites of memory in lives characterised by movement.


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