Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Communication Studies

Document Type



This multi-methodological project analyzes the utility of the proposed performance method, the Choreo-Story, within the field of Performance Studies. The Choreo-Story is a movement-based performance method, mode of devising, and performance product. It is a performance tool that can be used to understand how embodiment and dance help individuals make sense of the many identities they perform. This method highlights the body as both a text and tool for storytelling. To analyze the Choreo-Story method, I use Kenneth Burke’s Dramatistic Approach to examine three performance acts that occurred in the HopKins Black Box theatre between 2016 and 2018: my original Bauhaus performance assignment, LOOK!, and the Choreo-Story Workshops.

Using thick description, I describe the scene within which these acts occurred, argue for the intrinsic relationship between agent and agency within the Choreo-Story, and highlight the personal and professional purposes behind creating the Choreo-Story method. Through this analysis, I argue for the Choreo-Story method’s utility as a movement-based performance method and tool for performance practitioners. I also describe the method’s ability to be used outside of Performance Studies, pointing to its usefulness within Health Communication, Narrative Medicine, Medical Humanities, and Psychology. I conclude this project by considering its limitations and highlighting areas for future research and ways to expand the Choreo-Story method.

Committee Chair

Shaffer, Tracy Stephenson