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Philip Stanier is a senior lecturer in the Department of Performing Arts at the University of Winchester and Artistic Director of The Strange Names Collective.

More information can be found at:

Website: www.strangenamescollective.co.uk
Facebook: www.facebook.com/strangenamescollective
Instagram: Philip Stanier
Twitter: @philip_stanier

The Strange Names Collective formed in 2001 and is the work of Philip Stanier and collaborators. Together they make performances that explore the peculiarity of existence. We are inspired by a deep curiosity about the complexity of the world, and our reciprocal relationship with our environment.

The collective has worked with a large number of collaborators, employing performance, writing, animation, fine-art, photography, Virtual reality and video to create multi-part interdisciplinary performance projects.

Projects include: A 24 hour performance on the subject of happiness, the after show discussion for the worst show in the world, a collection of 451 photographs of people 'being' books, and an endless ribbon cutting ceremony.

His work gives people the space to engage with the world through a quirky combination of memory, imagination, and storytelling.

In 2016 philip was commissioned by Somerset House for the Utopia 2016 festival. The project ‘The Naming of Clouds’, explored the cultural history of clouds and their use for daydreaming, and became the first part in a cycle of works about environment.

In 2017 he was selected to be part of the Testbeds scheme in Luton. On the scheme the Collective developed the second part of the cycle exploring Forests, through two performances ‘Forest Bathing’ and ‘A Clearing’, and additional artworks.

For 2018 he has been commissioned by Lakes Culture to produce the third part in the cycle ‘The Buried Moon’ for the Lakes Ignite festival. The project will focus on Geology and make use of performance, artworks, animation, and virtual reality.


Areas of expertise

Contemporary Experimental Theatre and Performance, including:

  • Devising Processes
  • Ecology and Performance
  • Digital Technology and Performance
  • Postmodern Critical Theory
  • Writing for Performance
  • Durational and Time-Based Performance
  • Live Art and Performance Art
  • Devising Processes
  • Immersive and Site Specific Performance
  • Contemporary Performance Histories
  • The Weird and Eerie in Performance




  • Forthcoming 2018: ‘The Buried Moon’ Multi Part Performance Project for Lakes Ignite.
  • 2017- Present: ‘The Designs of Trees', Work in progress as part of 'Testbeds' Catalyst Co-Lab Scheme run by University of Bedfordshire.
  • 2014 - Present: 'The Naming of Clouds'. Multi-part performance project for Utopia 2016 at the Coultard Gallery, Kings College London, and Somerset House London. Touring National and internationally to New Zealand.
  • 2015: 'The Conversations'. Calm Down Dear Festival - Work in progress.
  • 2013: 'A Descent is not a Fall, A Climb is not a Ascent'. 10 hour durational performance. Leicester.
  • 2010-2012: ‘Prologue’ nationally touring.
  • 2009: ‘The Gathering Storm’ durational performance Camden Peoples Theatre.
  • 2009: ‘451’ Photographic exhibition Broadway, Nottingham, February.
  • 2008 - 2009: ‘The Gratitude of Monsters’ Group Performance, touring nationally.
  • 2007: ‘Repeat After Me’ Duet with Rachel Gomme performed at Emergency Platform, The Greenroom, Manchester. Performing Literatures Conference, Leeds.
  • 2007: ‘Appreciation’ Solo Performance at the Leeds Met Studio Theatre.
  • 2006: ‘There are a few people I’d like to mention’ Solo Durational Performance at South Square Centre, Bradford.
  • 2005: ‘Testimonial’ Group Performance at the Chelsea Theatre, London.
  • 2003 - ongoing: 'Long Term Happiness’ Solo Performance at Camden Peoples’ Theatre, London. The Waygood Gallery, Newcastle. Workshop Theatre, Leeds. Performing Lives conference at Kingston University, London
  • 2002: ‘Bodies in Hell’ Solo Performance, East End Collaborations platform, London.
  • 2002: ‘Hello, I’m Happy and I Hope You are Too’ Solo Performance at 291 Gallery, London.
  • 2001 - 2003: ‘How to Kill an Audience’ Solo Performance at East End Collaborations platform, London. National Review of Live Art in Glasgow. Old Museum Arts Centre, Belfast. Camden Peoples Theatre, London.
  • 2001: Writer for Sue Broadhurst’s ‘Blue Bloodshot Flowers’, Performed at Brunel University 1st and 2nd June and 291 Gallery, East London 1st August.
  • 2001: Writer/Dramaturge for Ersatz Dance Company’s ‘Save The Last Dance’ nationally toured production.
  • 1999: Writer/Dramaturge for Ersatz Dance Company’s ‘Re:Generation’ Multigenerational community project, Bowen West Theatre, Bedford.
  • 1998: Writer/Dramaturge for Ersatz Dance Company’s ‘Threshold’ nationally and internationally toured production.



  • The Distance Covered: Third Angel’s 9 Billion Miles’ in ‘Making Theatre Happen’ edited by Jackie Smart. 2009.
  • Article ‘Process, Repair and the Obligations of Performance: Goat Island’s When will the September roses bloom/last night was only a comedy’ included in Bottoms, Stephen and Goulish, Matthew. Eds. (2007) ‘Small Acts of Repair: Performance, Ecology and Goat Island’ London:Routledge.
  • Process, Repair and the Obligations of Performance: Goat Island’s When will the September roses bloom/last night was only a comedy’ commissioned for Dance Theatre Journal, March 2005.
  • The Waking Nightmare of the Twenty-first Century: Tragedy, History and Societas Raffaello Sanzio’s L.#09’ commissioned for Dance Theatre Journal, June 2004.
  • On Reviewing’ for Live Art Magazine, February 2004.
  • Commercially Zoned Works’ co-authored with Ange Taggart for Select the Version 03 Reader, 2003.
  • Re:Location. The Use of Space in Contemporary British Theatre’ in Body/Space/Technology Online Journal Vol. 1, No. 2. 2002.
  • Platforms: Context, Community and Criticism’ in Live Art Magazine issue 39.
  • Writing/Dance/Collaboration’ in Live Art Magazine issue 32.


Conference Papers/Presentations:

  • ‘The Weird and Eerie Woods’ at ‘A Sense of Place’ conference, University of Bedfordshire, Luton, November 2017.
  • ‘The Naming of Clouds' at Performing Writing Symposium, Wellington University, New Zealand, March, 2017.
  • Last of their kind/First of their kind’ at Goat Island: Lastness, raiding the archive, and pedagogical practices in performance symposium, Lancaster University, March, 2008.
  • Clearing Civilisation: Time/Ecology/Performance’ at TaPRA conference, Central School of Speech and Drama, London, September, 2006.
  • Time and The Obligations of Performance’ at PSi international conference ‘Performing Rights’ Queen Mary University, London, June, 2006.
  • Breaking the Boundaries: British Postmodern Theatre’ at the ‘Postgraduate Conference’ at De Montfort University, 2001.
  • Theoretical Acts: Theoretical Hybridity in Contemporary British Experimental Theatre’ at PSi international conference ‘Translation, Transition and Transformation’ in Mainz, Germany, 2001.
  • Remembering, Reconstructing, Reinventing: Postmodern Identities and the strategies of Postmodern Performance’ delivered at ‘Rethinking the Avant-Garde Conference’ De Montfort University, 1998.


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