Title: WIPSS: Proto-Theatricality and Performative Liminality within the Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni
Date: Tuesday 30 November
Time: 18:00 - 20:00
Venue: via Zoom.
The next seminar in the Work in Progress Seminar Series (WIPSS) is Proto-Theatricality and Performative Liminality within the Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni by Dr Dawn Adrienne Saliba.
The seminar will be held on Tuesday 30 November from 18:00 to 20:00 via Zoom. To register, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Convenors: Prof. Peter Mayo, Dr Michael Briguglio, Francois Zammit
It is evident that the Late Neolithic culture that lived on the Maltese islands enacted a complex series of ritual performances within “temple” buildings found in at least thirty sites scattered throughout the two major islands. One structure in particular, the Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni (circa 4,100-2,500 BCE), served as a particular focal point for ritual; indeed, the theatrical and acoustic elements implemented in the structural design reveal some of the most sophisticated Neolithic technologies of the time. Taking into account parameters of staging architecture; spatial dimensions; participant-access; sound studies; light flow; 3D modelling; performance experimentation; its relevance as a necropolis site; and semiotic significance of found artefacts, it is apparent that this society developed and synthesized a mythic discourse within the framework of a complex performative culture. This study investigates the performative praxis and concomitant development of proto-theatric architecture within Neolithic Malta inferred by a close examination of the Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni as a complex, ritualized space, one which yields important clues regarding the development of both theatre and human history.
Dawn Adrienne-Saliba is a performer, playwright and theatre director who holds a Ph.D. in Early Modern Drama from the State University of New York and an MFA in Musical Theatre Writing from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. She is currently undertaking postgraduate studies in Archaeology at the University of Malta where she is investigating performative liminality in the Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni. She is also the President of Malta-ARCH, an 'artivist' collective working to preserve the natural, cultural, and archaeological heritage of the country of Malta.