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Molly Flynn

molly flynn

Current Post / Principal Activity:

Currently working on documentary theatre in twenty first century Russia.


My thesis, ‘Documentary theatre in twenty-first century Russia: Teatr v kotorom ne igraiut’, narrates the history of Russian documentary theatre from its inception in 1999 to its current position as the leading form of the country’s theatrical avant-garde. Through comprehensive research and a series of close readings, this project contextualizes the rapid growth of documentary theatre in Russia within the socio-political setting of the Putin years (2000-) It not only illustrates how Russian documentary theatre artists present their experiences of contemporary Russian culture, but also explores how these artists' work seeks to engage its participants (both audiences and artists) in an active process of transformation.

Selected Publications:

  • “Commemoration and Enactment in Contemporary Russian Documentary Theatre,” IFTR (International Federation for Theatre Research), Warwick University, UK. July 2014.
  • “Russian Documentary Theatre and the Pursuit of Justice,” NEDRAma International Theatre Laboratory. Sofia, Bulgaria. May 2014.
  • “Playing Paradox: The Negotiation of Russian Cultural Memory in Nina Belenitskaia's 'Pavlik—moi Bog.” Literary Theatricality: Theatrical Text, an interdisciplinary graduate student conference at Princeton University. Princeton, NJ. October 2012.
  • “The Trial that Never Was: Reenactment, Revision, and the Constitution of Justice in Teatr.doc's One Hour Eighteen.'” NeMLA (Northeast Modern Language Association) conference. Boston, MA. March 2013.
  • “Mirror Stage, ”An original collaborative performance project. Shown at ATHE (American Theatre in Higher Education) conference mini-fringe. Boulder, CO. August 2008.


  • CEELBAS Internship Funding Recipient, CEELBAS (2015)
  • Judith E. Wilson Foundation Grant Recipient, University of Cambridge (2014)
  • Cambridge Trusts Fellow, University of Cambridge (2011)

Undergraduate teaching:

  • Russian Short Fiction, University College London (SSEES) – Course Instructor: Lecture topics range from 19th century classics in the first term to Soviet and post-Soviet literature in the second term.
  • Russian Reading and Writing, University College London (SSEES) – Course Instructor: Twice-weekly language classes focusing on grammar and comprehension.
  • Russian Art and Culture after 1953, University of Cambridge (MML) – Supervisor/Guest Lecturer: Topics include Socialist Realism, modes of resistance, notions of testimony in the late-Soviet Union, and post-Soviet cultural studies.
  • World Theatre History, Brown University (Department of Theatre and Performance Studies) – Teaching Assistant: Introduction to performance theory and Ancient Greek to early modern English performance practices in the first semester. Non-western theatre and Elizabethan to modern theatre in the second semester

Other teaching and outreach:

  • Freelance Cultural Events Curator at GRAD (Gallery for Russian Arts and Design). Our May 2015 day festival Documenting Ukraine: four days of cinema, performance, and debate brought together many of Ukraine’s leading documentary theatre and cinema artists and created the space for international and interdisciplinary dialogue about Ukrainian arts, culture, and politics.
  • Director of the Steering Committee for the Cambridge Slavonic Studies Graduate Research Forum, 2013-2014.
  • Co-creator of the documentary play “Lynndie Sings the Blues,” a verbatim performance about the 2004 Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal. “Lynndie Sings the Blues” premiered in Cambridge in 2014 with the support of the Judith E. Wilson Foundation and toured to the NEDRAma international theatre laboratory in Sofia, Bulgaria later that year.
  • Post-Grad Representative to the Cambridge Committee for Russian and Eastern European Studies, 2012-2014.
  • Administrator of the Cambridge Russian Graduate Seminar, 2011-2012.

Languages known and studied:

Advanced Russian

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