Theatre Studies: Dr Yvon Bonenfant

Lecturer: Yvon Bonenfant, PhD
Department: Theatre, School of Film, Music and Theatre.
Module: DR6001 Collaborative Theatre and Performance Practices.


Report – Theatre

GCDE has been trialled as being integrated into the curriculum of the MA Theatre and Performative Practices in 2022-23, in line with our plans. Because of the combined challenges of teaching theatre in the not-quite-post-Covid era, and because of our ongoing learning from our teaching process, some of our plans were not fully realised. However, other unforeseen aspects of GCDE were integrated into the curriculum.

Full details on the implementation report and the initial plan of the project are available under “Documents” below.




Final Report

Bonenfant, Yvon_final-report (PDF opens in a new tab/window)


Praxis plan

Bonenfant, Yvon_case-study-Praxis-Plan (PDF opens in a new tab/window)



Yvon Bonenfant, PhD

Yvon Bonenfant, PhD joined the Department of Theatre at UCC as Head in September 2018. He is also Visiting Professor of Research at the University of Winchester.

Bonenfant is an artist-researcher. His work focuses on the voice, on sensation, and on tactility, and on questions of inclusion of different kinds of voices and bodies in culture. He is involved in the emerging field of interdisciplinary voice studies and is a recognised innovator in research methods and transdisciplinary collaboration.

He explores questions around the human voice and its creative power, at the intersection of theatre, performance/live art, installation, and music/sound; often leading interdisciplinary research teams. A former laureate of the Wellcome Trust Large Arts Awards, he also collaborates with researchers from speech and language science, voice and speech medicine, and vibration, materials and textile engineering, and with an array of visual and design thinkers.

He has a burgeoning interest in vibro-tactile performance and is key contributor to thinking about the ways the queer voice works performance and in participatory artistic processes. In collaboration with coders, visual, design, and digital artists, he develops voice-celebrating experiences for both the general public (such as We Wink, We Wink, our Voices Blink) and for hard-to-reach audiences, like children with profound and multiple learning disabilities (such as Resonant Tails).

He is also an expert on innovative approaches to practice-inclusive research methodologies in artistic research: especially where the voice, or interdisciplinary collaboration, are concerned.
Bonenfant produces journal articles and book chapters, but of course also makes artworks, and experiments with new forms of vocalic and tactile writing. The artworks range from performances, to participatory installations, to interactive environments, to textile ‘books’, and even an iPad app. His works often undergo long R+D processes and audience testing before being shown; Bonenfant has a particular interest in how non-professional ‘users’ of art experiences become willing to make daring vocal choices in the public sphere.

A striking aspect of his work involves the range of its users, and of the interest it generates. In 2018, he delivered a keynote to the British Voice Association’s Voice Clinics Forum – the UK’s primary voice medicine and rehabilitation conference; while in 2017 he was invited by Edinburgh’s Children’s Festival to deliver a keynote and delegate talk about queered voicing in performance for children. In 2017-18, his works as an individual artist and with his spin-off charity Tract and Touch reached more than 220K users across different registers of the senses: sometimes visually, sometimes through sound, and sometimes through touch.

His work has been funded by: Irish Research Council, Arts Council England, Wellcome Trust, the UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council, the British Academy, Youth Music (with Tract and Touch), Postcode Community Trust (with Tract and Touch), and many other supporters.

Personal website

Tract and Touch (artistic director)

Work for children


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