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Dr Christopher Wiley writes about Stephen Sondheim for The Conversation

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Dr Christopher Wiley has written an article for The Conversation (by invitation) on Stephen Sondheim (pictured), who died on 26 November 2021 at the age of 91.

Dr Wiley’s contribution, entitled ‘Five of Stephen Sondheim’s best shows’, was published just a few days later on 1 December 2021. It discussed Sondheim alongside his musicals West Side Story, Gypsy, Company, Sweeney Todd, and Into the Woods, each of which was profiled in the article.

This is the fourth time that Dr Wiley has contributed to The Conservation, a global news website that offers commentary on news stories from leading academics. His most recent article, again on musical theatre, was published just over a year ago.

Bibliographic citation

Wiley, Christopher. ‘Five of Stephen Sondheim’s best shows’. The Conversation, 1 December 2021. <https://theconversation.com/five-of-stephen-sondheims-best-shows-172916>.

Update: Dr Wiley’s article has now been viewed over 18,000 times.

Dr Christopher Wiley gives lecture-recital on the comic songs of Alexander S. Bermange

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Dr Christopher Wiley delivered a lecture-recital on ‘The Comic Songs of Alexander S. Bermange’ on Wednesday 17 November 2021, as part of the lunchtime recital series at the University of Surrey.

The lecture-recital was given alongside Alexander S. Bermange (pictured) himself, who illustrated the talk with a series of performances of his comic songs. It opened the event ‘Laughing and Crying: Perspectives on 20th and 21st Century British Song’ held at the University that day.

Dr Wiley’s talk focused on musical allusion and compositional process in three songs by Alexander S. Bermange, ‘I Wish That My Life Were Like a Musical’, ‘I Think I Might Be Jesus’, and ‘The Seven Georges’, each performed by the composer-lyricist at the piano. Some 30 academics and students were in attendance.

Dr Christopher Wiley lead-edits new Routledge volume on women’s suffrage and the arts

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Dr Christopher Wiley has edited, together with Dr Lucy Ella Rose (University of Surrey), a new volume entitled Women’s Suffrage in Word, Image, Music, Stage and Screen: The Making of a Movement, published by Routledge in 2021.

The essay collection incorporates chapters written by authors who presented papers at a conference co-organized by Dr Wiley and Dr Rose at the University of Surrey in 2018, together with other invited contributors.

Authors range from distinguished senior academics to up-and-coming postgraduate researchers, and include Anne Anderson, Kathy Atherton, V. Irene Cockroft, Elizabeth Crawford, Brigitte Caroline Dale, Kristin M. Franseen, Amy Galvin, Marleen Hoffmann, Eleanor March, Gursimran Oberoi, Naomi Paxton, Sarah Pedersen, June Purvis, Lucy Ella Rose, Christopher Wiley, and Marion Wynne-Davies. The full table of contents may be viewed here.

Dr Wiley’s chapter in the volume, ‘Ethel Smyth, music and the suffragette movement: Reconsidering The Boatswain’s Mate as feminist opera’, discusses Ethel Smyth’s opera The Boatswain’s Mate in relation to the composer’s recent service to the suffragette movement, and subjects the common supposition that the work constitutes a ‘feminist opera’ to fresh scrutiny.

Dr Wiley and Dr Rose also co-authored the editorial introduction, ‘Women’s suffrage and cultural representation: The making of a movement’, in which they provide some historical context for the women’s suffrage movement and the many ways in which art intersected and engaged with it.

For further information (including reviews), and to purchase the volume: https://www.routledge.com/Womens-Suffrage-in-Word-Image-Music-Stage-and-Screen-The-Making-of/Wiley-Rose/p/book/9780367361983

Bibliographic citations

Wiley, Christopher. ‘Ethel Smyth, music and the suffragette movement: Reconsidering The Boatswain’s Mate as feminist opera’, in Christopher Wiley and Lucy Ella Rose eds. Women’s Suffrage in Word, Image, Music, Stage and Screen: The Making of a Movement. London: Routledge, 2021, pp. 169–85.

Wiley, Christopher and Lucy Ella Rose. ‘Women’s suffrage and cultural representation: The making of a movement’, in Christopher Wiley and Lucy Ella Rose eds. Women’s Suffrage in Word, Image, Music, Stage and Screen: The Making of a Movement. London: Routledge, 2021, pp. 1–14 .

Wiley, Christopher and Lucy Ella Rose eds. Women’s Suffrage in Word, Image, Music, Stage and Screen: The Making of a Movement. London: Routledge, 2021. pp. xxxv, 288. ISBN 978-0-367-36198-3 (hardback), 978-1-032-02492-9 (paperback).

Full text

The full text of Dr Wiley’s chapter is available here: https://www.academia.edu/65113008/Ethel_Smyth_Music_and_the_Suffragette_Movement_Reconsidering_The_Boatswains_Mate_as_Feminist_Opera

And the full text of the co-authored editorial introduction may be downloaded here: https://www.academia.edu/65112276/Womens_Suffrage_and_Cultural_Representation_The_making_of_a_movement

Update: The volume has received an excellent review by Katy Owen in the journal Women’s History Review: https://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/N36ZJDRPGIQHRC2K7D2X/full

Dr Christopher Wiley writes on stage-to-screen musical adaptations for The Conversation

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Dr Christopher Wiley contributed an article to The Conversation (by invitation) on film adaptations of stage musicals, published on 10 November 2020.

Entitled ‘The Prom: the challenges of adapting the stage to the screen’, Dr Wiley’s article was prompted by the upcoming release of the film adaptation of the musical The Prom on Netflix on 11 December 2020, while also discussing other examples such as A Chorus Line, Mamma mia!, and Cats.

This is the third time that Dr Wiley has written for The Conversation, his other articles being a piece on the 30th anniversary of the musical Les Misérables, and a scholarly response to Stephen Fry. Collectively these have received some 8,000 hits to date.

Founded in Australia in 2011 and launched in the UK in 2013, The Conversation is an independent global news website featuring stories and opinions from the scholarly community. The University of Surrey is one of its 13 founding UK partners.

Bibliographic citation

Wiley, Christopher. ‘The Prom: the challenges of adapting the stage to the screen’. The Conversation, 10 November 2020. <https://theconversation.com/the-prom-the-challenges-of-adapting-the-stage-to-the-screen-149783>.

Dr Christopher Wiley lead-edits new Palgrave book on researching and writing about contemporary art and artists

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Dr Christopher Wiley has edited, together with Dr Ian Pace (City, University of London), a new book entitled Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists: Challenges, Practices, and Complexities, published by Palgrave Macmillan and encompassing music, literature, dance, theatre and the visual arts.

Developed from a conference held at the University of Surrey in 2017, the volume includes contributions by Joel Baldwin, Richard Birchall, Jill Brown, Miriam Cabell and Phoebe Stubbs, Vered Engelhard, Christopher Leedham and Martin Scheuregger, Ian Pace, Andy W. Smith, Joanne ‘Bob’ Whalley, Christopher Wiley, Annie Yim, and Lorraine York.

Dr Wiley has co-authored two chapters in the collection: the editorial introduction, ‘Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists’, with Ian Pace; and the chapter MusicArt: Creating Dialogues Across the Arts’, in conversation with Dr Annie Yim.

For further information, and to purchase the book: https://www.palgrave.com/gb/book/9783030392321
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/3030392325

Bibliographic citations 

Wiley, Christopher and Ian Pace. ‘Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists’, in Christopher Wiley and Ian Pace eds. Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists: Challenges, Practices, and Complexities. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020, pp. 3–15. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-39233-8_1

Yim, Annie and Christopher Wiley. ‘MusicArt: Creating Dialogues Across the Arts’, in Christopher Wiley and Ian Pace eds. Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists: Challenges, Practices, and Complexities. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020, pp. 259–76. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-39233-8_14

Wiley, Christopher and Ian Pace eds. Researching and Writing on Contemporary Art and Artists: Challenges, Practices, and Complexities. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020. ISBN 978-3-030-39232-1, 978-3-030-39233-8 (eBook). https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-39233-8

Full texts

The full text of the editorial introduction is available for free download under licence from Surrey Research Insight Open Access: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/857053/

Dr Christopher Wiley publishes 50th review for Musical Theatre Review

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Musical Theatre ReviewDr Christopher Wiley has written 50 reviews since February 2014 for the digital magazine Musical Theatre Review, which covers a wide variety of live events internationally, ranging from pop gigs to opera in addition to musical theatre, and is Vuelio’s no.2 theatre blog.

Among the many highlights of Dr Wiley’s activity include reviews of Elaine Paige’s ‘Stripped Back’ tour, of Mandela Trilogy by Cape Town Opera at the Royal Festival Hall, London, and of the international première of Strictly Ballroom: The Musical at Sydney Lyric Theatre, Australia.

Other highlights include the 2014 revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel; Sinatra: The Main Event at Cadogan Hall, London, starring Richard Shelton; and solo shows by leading West End stars Daniel Koek and Nadim Naaman.

Coincidentally, Dr Wiley’s first and 50th reviews were of two shows written and performed by the same artist, comic songwriter Alexander S. Bermange. The artist most frequently reviewed by Dr Wiley is Pippa Winslow, who features in seven different reviews.

Dr Wiley has also reviewed student productions by many of the major performing arts institutions and organisations, particularly Guildford School of Acting and Youth Music Theatre UK; as well as many new works of musical theatre, and one-off productions in popular London venues such as The Pheasantry.

A complete listing of Dr Wiley’s reviews for Musical Theatre Review is available at the following link: http://musicaltheatrereview.com/?s=Christopher+Wiley

Dr Christopher Wiley co-organizes international multi-disciplinary conference on Writing About Contemporary Artists at the University of Surrey

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Keynote - Annie Yim, Christopher Le Brun, and Christopher WileyDr Christopher Wiley was Chair of the Conference Committee for an international, multi-disciplinary three-day conference entitled Writing About Contemporary Artists: Challenges, Practices, and Complexities’, held at the University of Surrey from 20-22 October 2017.

Hosted and sponsored by the University’s Institute of Advanced Studies, the conference brought together scholars and practitioners in fields including musicology, theatre studies, dance and choreography, literature, film, digital media, and the visual arts. Its 70 participants represented a strongly international delegation drawn from North and South America, Australia, South Africa, and across Europe and the UK.

Dr Wiley compèred and co-authored the event’s central Keynote Concert and Dialogue (pictured above) given by MusicArt London, featuring the distinguished painter Christopher Le Brun (President of the Royal Academy of Arts) and pianist Dr Annie Yim (St John’s Smith Square Young Artist in Residence 2016/17), with additional contributions by composer Richard Birchall.

Dr Wiley also acted as chair and panel member for the final conference session (pictured below), a roundtable on ‘Contemporary artists, contemporary writing: Internet and social media’, at which he spoke about his reviewing activity across the art disciplines for digital magazine Musical Theatre Review as well as his guest-blogging for sites such as the Association of National Teaching Fellows blog and Oxford University Press Blog.

Further information may be found at the conference website: http://www.ias.surrey.ac.uk/workshops/artistswriting/

The full programme (including abstracts) may be downloaded here: http://www.ias.surrey.ac.uk/workshops/artistswriting/papers/Writing%20About%20Contemporary%20Artists%20conference%20_%20Proggramme.pdf

Roundtable - Christopher Wiley, Björn Heile, Katie Beswick, and Ian Pace

Update: Online reports on the conference are available at the following links:

http://www.planethugill.com/2017/10/writing-about-contemporary-artists.html

http://annieyim.com/keynote-concert-and-dialogue-at-an-international-multi-disciplinary-conference-at-the-university-of-surrey-21-october-2017/

http://blogs.surrey.ac.uk/arts/2017/10/22/international-conference-in-pats-building-writing-about-contemporary-artists/

The School of Arts at the University of Surrey celebrates top rankings in The Guardian’s University League Tables 2017

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The-Guardian-logo-100x100The School of Arts at the University of Surrey is celebrating excellent rankings in The Guardian’s UK University League Tables 2017, published today as part of the Guardian University Guide.

The Guardian league tables rank the University of Surrey No. 1 nationally for Music, No. 2 nationally for Drama & Dance, and No. 4 nationally in the overall league table.

As Director of Learning & Teaching for the School of Arts, Dr Christopher Wiley has taken a lead in developing the School’s learning & teaching and student experience strategies. This has included the initiatives by which its students have been engaged in completion of the National Student Survey, the latest results for which similarly placed the School’s subject areas at No. 1 and No. 2 nationally.

The Guardian league tables represent one of the most influential rankings of UK universities, and incorporate multiple metrics from the National Student Survey including student satisfaction with teaching, satisfaction with feedback and assessment, and overall satisfaction with the course.

Further information on the successes of the School of Arts in The Guardian league tables 2017 may be found here: http://blogs.surrey.ac.uk/arts/2016/05/23/guardian-league-table-2017-results-music-at-no-1-drama-dance-at-no-2/

Proud-to-be-top-5-in-the-Guardian-University-Guide

 

Dr Wiley convenes inaugural School of Arts ‘Opportunities and Networking’ event at the University of Surrey

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School of Arts 'Opportunities and Networking' Event, University of Surrey

The School of Arts at the University of Surrey held its first ‘Opportunities and Networking’ event in the Ivy main auditorium, Ivy Arts Centre on Thursday 8 October 2015, organized by Dr Christopher Wiley.

Over 100 students were in attendance across the subject areas of Music and Sound Recording, Theatre, Dance, Digital Media Arts, and the Guildford School of Acting.

The event introduced students to the many different possibilities for them to collaborate with one another on different School of Arts programmes, provided them with information about extra-curricular University activities related to the arts, facilitated their networking with students elsewhere in the School, and enabled them to register their interest in collaborating with one another via sign-up sheets.

Dr Wiley compèred the event, which featured contributions from range of other School of Arts staff as well as students. The evening ended with a series of networking activities designed to enable students to meet one another and to discuss their interests in collaborating on arts projects, followed by more informal opportunities to chat over pizza and soft drinks.

This ‘Opportunities and Networking’ event follows in the footsteps of an equally successful and well-attended panel discussion on ‘Careers in the Arts’, co-organized by Dr Wiley and hosted by the School of Arts earlier in the year.

Dr Christopher Wiley writes on ‘Les Misérables at 30’ for The Conversation

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Les MisérablesDr Christopher Wiley has contributed an article to The Conversation on the enduring popularity of Les Misérables, the world’s most successful musical, ahead of the 30th anniversary of its London production on 8 October 2015.

Dr Wiley’s article, ‘Les Misérables at 30: breaking hearts and records’, discussed aspects of the show’s plot and musical score, the role played by writers Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg and by producer Cameron Mackintosh, as well as more recent developments such as Tom Hooper’s 2012 film adaptation.

The full article may be read here: https://theconversation.com/les-miserables-at-30-breaking-hearts-and-records-48535

This is the second time that Dr Wiley has written for The Conversation, the first being a scholarly response to Stephen Fry, which has received 4,000 hits to date.

Founded in Australia in 2011 and launched in the UK in 2013, The Conversation is an independent global news website featuring stories and opinions sourced from the scholarly community. The University of Surrey is one of its founding UK partners.

Update: Dr Wiley’s Les Misérables article received over 1,300 hits by the end of 8 October (UK time), with readers fairly evenly distributed between the UK, US, Australia, and Continental Europe.

Dr Christopher Wiley publishes 20th review for Musical Theatre Review

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Musical Theatre ReviewDr Christopher Wiley has contributed 20 reviews over the past year to the digital magazine Musical Theatre Review, which covers a wide variety of live musical theatre events internationally.

Highlights of Dr Wiley’s activity include reviews of the acclaimed revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel at the Arcola Theatre, London; of Sinatra: The Main Event at Cadogan Hall, London, starring Richard Shelton; and of the international première of Strictly Ballroom: The Musical at Sydney Lyric Theatre, Australia.

Dr Wiley has also enjoyed reviewing student productions by Guildford School of Acting, Performance Preparation Academy, and Youth Music Theatre UK; as well as new musical theatre works presented in Guildford and the neighbouring areas, and several live gigs at The Pheasantry, London. His reviews have attracted much attention on social media.

A complete listing of Dr Wiley’s reviews for Musical Theatre Review is available at the following link: http://www.scoop.it/t/christopher-wiley-bibliography-of-reviews