Dr Kene Igweonu is the Academic Dean for the Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries. Prior to joining Middlesex in 2019 as Deputy Dean (Research and Knowledge Exchange), Kene has held a number of leadership roles, most recent of which are Director of Knowledge Exchange and Enterprise for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities and Acting Head of the School of Music and Performing Arts at Canterbury Christ Church University. Kene has extensive experience in curriculum design, quality assurance and enhancements, and developing innovative partnerships with private and public sector organisations, particularly those that enhance student employability and enterprise. Kene is a leading researcher in international theatre and somatic practice. He retains ongoing interests in actor and performance training, directing, Black British theatre, theatre and performance in Africa and its Diaspora. His research and practice interests also extend to the Feldenkrais Method in health, wellbeing and performance training.
Kene holds a number of notable external positions and is President and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the African Theatre Association (AfTA). As President of AfTA, he has led the organisation through a range of new outreach initiatives and partnerships, including a highly successful annual virtual symposium of developments in African theatre and performance, new arrangements to promote scholarly exchange across borders, as well as negotiating a dynamic partnership with the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) to provide books and library resources to public universities in Africa. Kene is a Fellow of the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education and of the Higher Education Academy. He is a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Peer Review College, as well as a Subject Reviewer for the National Research Foundation of South Africa. He was also a member of the HEA Subject Advisory Panel for Dance, Drama and Music.
As Dean, Dr Igweonu is principally involved, along with other colleagues, in the leadership of the Faculty. However, he maintains his learning and teaching interests through PhD supervision, external examination, and occasional lectures and workshops on modules relevant to his expertise in theatre and performance.
Dr Igweonu's research and publication interests are in actor and performance training, directing, black British theatre, theatre and performance in Africa and its Diasporas, as well as the Feldenkrais Method in health, wellbeing and performance training.
Dr Igweonu has published extensively on African theatre and performance. He is founding convener of the African and Caribbean Theatre and Performance Working Group of the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR). He was also founding editor of Platform: Journal of Theatre and Performing Arts: a refereed journal that is devoted to publishing the work of postgraduates, postdoctoral researchers, and entry-level academics in the fields of theatre and the performing arts.
Igweonu, Kene (2019) From posture to acture: developing awareness in movement and performer training in UK Higher Education using the Feldenkrais Method ®. Feldenkrais Research Journal , 6 . pp. 1-13. ISSN 1817-4000
Igweonu, Kene (2017) Dynamics of distancing in Nigerian drama: a functional approach to Metatheatre. By Nadia Anwar. Stuttgart: ibidem-Verlag, 2016. Pp. xiv 256. £26.86/€29.90 Pb. [Book review]. Theatre Research International , 42 (2). pp. 204-205. ISSN 0307-8833
Igweonu, Kene (2017) Stanislavsky in Nigeria: convergences and counterpoints in actor training and practice. In: Stanislavsky in the World: The System and its Transformations Across Continents. Pitches, Jonathan and Aquilina, Stefan , eds. Bloomsbury Methuen Drama, London, pp. 277-289. ISBN 9781472587879
Igweonu, Kene (2016) 'The tree has four or five leaves': Talawa, Britishness and the first all-black production of Waiting for Godot in Britain. In: Staging Beckett in Great Britain. Tucker, David and McTighe, Trish , eds. Bloomsbury Methuen Drams, London, pp. 141-156. ISBN 9781474240178
Igweonu, Kene (2016) Plays one. Kraft Books, Ibadan. ISBN 9789789183548
Dr Igweonu is the current President of the African Theatre Association (AfTA). He has previously served on the executive committee of the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR) and was Chair of its New Scholars’ Prize Committee.
He was a member of the HEA Subject Advisory Panel for Dance, Drama and Music. He is a subject reviewer for South Africa’s National Research Foundation (NRF) and also reviewed applications for the HEA Teaching Development Grants. He has been a nominator for the Inamori Foundation Japan, nominating entries for the 2015 and 2019 Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy (Theatre, Cinema).
Dr Igweonu is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College - Academic, Peer Review College - Knowledge Transfer (2020-2023)