This article engages with audience perception of emotion in a physical theatre performance. Two primary, yet conflicting, scholarly discourses relating to how human beings perceive emotions in themselves and in others are discussed: Emotion as Humanly Congruent, and Emotion as Personally Unique. There are four expressive/behavioural domains through which humans perceive and observe emotion. These include: facial expressions; body attitude; breath and voice and speech. The perception of three emotions namely anger, fear and disgust are incorporated in this paper. This article discusses audience perception of the three mentioned emotions with reference to the four expressive/behavioural domains whilst highlighting the ways in which the two scholarly discourses are combined when perceiving emotion in theatre performances. Data was collected and discussed in relation to the two scholarly discourses to determine whether the audience members could perceive the three emotions portrayed in a physical theatre performance.
Keywords: Physical Theatre; Emotion; Perception of Emotion; Audience Perception
Dissertation (MA (Drama))--University of Pretoria, 2020.