Fiona Graham

Staff details

Fiona Graham


Senior Lecturer


Theatre and Performance


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Goldsmiths Research Centres/Groups

Practice Research Group

Dr Fiona Graham is an artist/scholar with research interests in dramaturgy and performance development.

Dr Fiona Graham has been a theatre maker for forty years working as an actor, director, writer, producer and dramaturge. This work has included new writing, dramaturgy, feminist theatre, site specific performance, verbatim theatre, community theatre, theatre in education, interdisciplinary practice, dance and physical theatre.

This body of practice informs her role as Programme Director for the MA Dramaturgy and Writing for Performance and she also teaches across the BA Drama and Theatre Arts. Her practice research in New Zealand is documented in 'Performing Dramaturgy' (Playmarket, 2017).

Fiona is currently writing 'The Dance' which builds upon her trilogy of plays 'Triptych: Three Plays Inspired by the Art of Paula Rego' (Aurora, 2019). She is also working as a dramaturge with Talking House Theatre Company and Alleyne Dance Company.

Academic qualifications

  • PhD Theatre, Auckland University 2014
  • MA Production Process, Goldsmiths, London University 1992
  • PGCE Drama, Goldsmiths, London University 1982
  • BA (Joint Honours) English and Education, Oxford Brooks University 1981

Research interests

Graham’s practice research has analysed the role and methodologies of the dramaturge in performance development and investigated New Zealand practice. It explores how the dramaturge’s ways of working have evolved in response to external and internal influences including nationalism, post colonialism, feminism and multiculturalism. This detailed focus on dramaturgy in New Zealand provides a lens for exploring development strategies of international relevance. She discusses how the role of the dramaturge has developed in New Zealand, how dramaturgical thinking can be inspired by Māori ways of knowing and how new frameworks can facilitate innovative collaborations. By shifting the analytical focus from the macro to the micro and back again, she imagines what a regional Pacific/New Zealand dramaturgy might look like and what it can offer the world.

Building on 'Performing Dramaturgy' (Playmarket, 2017), Fiona is now researching how a dramaturge can best be prepared for performance development drawing upon her role as Programme Director of the MA Dramaturgy and Writing for Performance. She is also collaborating with colleagues at Otago University to investigate how verbatim theatre practice can provide strategies for social and political change.

Publications and research outputs


Graham, Fiona; McDowell, Miriama and Su'a, Denise. 2018. SIGHTINGS. In: "SIGHTINGS", Q Theatre and other venues, New Zealand, July-August 2018.

Graham, Fiona. 2017. Dramaturge for LOST AND FOUND (DANCES OF EXILE). In: "Tempo Dance Festival", Q Theatre, Auckland, New Zealand.

Graham, Fiona. 2015. Dramaturge for THE MOONCAKE AND THE KUMARA. In: "Auckland Festival", Auckland, New Zealand.


Graham, Fiona. 2018. Catalysing Change: The Creative Interventions of the Dramaturge Project.

Graham, Fiona. 2017. Performing Dramaturgy.

Graham, Fiona. 2015. Dramaturge for PAH.


Graham, Fiona. 2023. Liquid Dramaturgy in Aotearoa: Interview with Nisha Madhan and Julia Croft. Critical Stages(28), ISSN 2409-7411

Graham, Fiona and Brown, Carol. 2017. 'The Pā Collective: Developing Dramaturgical Intersections, Collaborations and Performing Layers of Place Post-Empire'. Contemporary Theatre Review, 27(2), pp. 263-274. ISSN 1048-6801

Graham, Fiona. 2009. 'Dramaturge as Midwife: The Writing Process within a New Zealand community theatre project'. Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, 2(2), pp. 209-216. ISSN 1753-5190


Graham, Fiona. 2019. Triptych: Three Plays for Young People Inspired by the Art of Paula Rego. London: Aurora. ISBN 978-1-921430-23-9

Graham, Fiona. 2017. Performing Dramaturgy. Wellington, New Zealand: Playmarket. ISBN 9780908607648

Book Section

Graham, Fiona. 2017. The Nomadic Dramaturge: Negotiating Subjectivity, Multicultural Translation, and Dramaturgical Composition. In: Emer O'Toole; Andrea Pelegrí Kristić and Stuart Young, eds. Ethical Exchanges in Translation, Adaptation and Dramaturgy. Leiden; Boston: Rodopi. ISBN 9789004346338

Edited Journal

Kelly, Kathryn; Meyrick, Julian; Graham, Fiona; Nepia, Moana and Coleman, Emily, eds. 2023. Critical Stages Issue 28: Postmillennial Dramaturgies in Australia and Aotearoa / New Zealand, Critical Stages, (28). 2409-7411

Professional projects

Trustee for PATINA, Artist Residency Project in Lewes, East Sussex.

Conferences and talks

2019: Performing Dramaturgy
Keynote speaker at The UNESCO Playwrights Festival, University of Otago, Dunedin.

2016: The Pa Collective: Developing Dramaturgical Intersections
Paper for the Dramaturgy and Translation panel, The International Federation of Theatre Conference, Stockholm

2013: The Dramaturge as Kaiarataki: Navigating the Flow
The Pacific Biennale, Auckland University of Technology

2013: A Nomadic Practice: The work of the dramaturge in performance development
Workshop paper for the Practice Research Working Group at The International Federation of Theatre Conference, Barcelona

2013: Intercultural performance and transformation in Auckland
Presentation at Australian Association for Theatre Drama and Performance Studies Conference, 28th June – 1st July, Monash University, Melbourne

2011: The Role of Dramaturge: Facilitating a New Zealand community theatre project
presentation at Australian Association for Theatre Drama and Performance Studies Conference, Monash University, Melbourne