Photo of Soseh Yekanians
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20122020

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Personal profile

Personal profile

Soseh is a graduate from the Australian Academy of Dramatic Art in Sydney with an Advanced Diploma in Arts (Acting) and a Bachelor of Performance. In 2005 she was invited to the Atlantic Theater Company Acting School in New York, where she completed the 2-Year Professional Conservatory Acting Program in Practical Aesthetics.

Returning to Australia and fostering her passion for the performing arts, in 2012 she was awarded an Australian Postgraduate Award Scholarship to embark on a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) in Perth. Her practice-led research titled, ‘Creatively Pursuing Persona: Finding Identity through Directing’, investigated how theatre directing and the performing arts could provide a culturally displaced individual with a sense of identity and belonging. Her practice-led study, which resulted in an exegesis and two components of an original creative work, specifically provided new insights into how theatre directing allows an individual to (re)discover their identity through leadership in a non-judgmental forum and how the theatre as a space for communal exchanges and conversations can initiate dialogue about cultural differences.

Following her doctorate, a major career highlight has been the publication of Soseh’s children’s literature book, ‘The Special Team Elite’. The story is derived from her own upbringing in Australia and explores her real and fantastical experiences growing up as a culturally displaced individual within a world, which, at times, can be unforgiving of ‘the other’. Recently, Soseh’s revised thesis, ‘ Finding Identity through Directing’ was recognised by world leading academic publisher Routledge and is set for global publication in 2020.

Teaching

Having started her career in theatre at aged six, over the years whilst following her various creative endeavours, Soseh has primarily developed a strong teaching base working as an acting teacher, director and theatre educator for performing arts institutions and elite talent agencies both in Australia and overseas.

Soseh lectures within the School of Communication and Creative Industries and teaches subjects in Theatre/Media.

Research Interests

As a researcher-director, Soseh is fascinated with the idea of ‘performing belonging and identity on stage’ and therefore, is interested in how performance as a cultural phenomenon can help break down harmful stereotypes and through the transparency of theatre, offer cross-cultural exchange that develop and empower an individual’s sense of (re)discovery of identity.

During her doctorate, her research focused on understandings of 'Self' and identity formation with specific reference to theatre and directing, with a keen interest in how cultural stereotypes manifested in individuals through the pressures of society and how these stereotypes were/are performed via theatrical representations onstage.

As a Persian-Armenian-Australian who has personally experienced cultural displacement Soseh is fascinated with how theatre and art more generally speaks to this sense of (dis)location. Through the performing arts how might individuals (re)discover their sense of belonging and home? Moreover, looking towards the future, especially through globalization, the speed of information and technology enabling the collapse of national borders/boundaries and the embracing of 'multiculturalism', the potential for breaking down these discrimination margins becomes possible and if so, what role does theatre and performance play?

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