Flashes of Red

Dramaturgical Thinking in Action


  • Brian Quirt




Using the lens of ‘interference’ the essay examines the author’s work as a dramaturg and understanding of his approaches to dramaturgical thinking. The essay focuses on five areas of dramaturgical practice, including case studies that foreground ideas of interference in the sense of disruption and amplification in the following areas:
1) working with playwrights / creators; 2) with performance researchers; 3) with institutions; 4) with interns / mentees; and finally, 5) within the author’s own creative practice.


Brian Quirt

Brian Quirt is founder and Artistic Director of Nightswimming, a dramaturgical company based in Toronto; Director of the Banff Centre Playwrights Lab; and a member the faculty ensemble of the Banff Cultural Leadership Program. With Nightswimming he has commissioned and developed 35 new works, created nine of his own plays, and directed the premieres and national tours of many Nightswimming projects including, most recently, new works by Carmen Aguirre and Anita Majumdar. Nightswimming’s initiatives include Pure Research, dedicated to innovative performance research, and 5x25, a national commissioning project for artists born in 1995, the year of Nightswimming’s first production. He’s held senior positions at the Great Canadian Theatre Company, Factory Theatre, The Theatre Centre and Canadian Stage Company. His work as dramaturg, director and playwright has been seen at theatres across Canada. Brian was founding Board Chair of SpiderWebShow Performance. He is the past Board Chair and a past-President of the Literary Managers & Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA), established LMDA Canada, and is a two-time recipient of LMDA’s Elliott Hayes Award for Outstanding Dramaturgy. Read more at nightswimming.ca.

Article Live Experiences in the Theater Gardens of Contemporary Art Flashes of Red Essay Photo: Brian Quirt / Andrea Nann in Pure Research 15, 2010, ’The Uses of Additive Light Blending’ led by David Duclos





Quirt, B. (2022). Flashes of Red: Dramaturgical Thinking in Action. Peripeti, 19(S10), 73–82. https://doi.org/10.7146/peri.v19iS10.132298