Published online by Cambridge University Press: 03 October 2003
Performance artist Tim Miller has been making autobiographical work for more than twenty years. Dee Heddon explores Miller's recent show, Glory Box (2001), arguing that, both in his practice and his use of his own life stories, he is attempting not only to connect with but to energize his audiences, transforming them into activist spectators. One tactic Miller employs in Glory Box is futurity – performing an autobiography that he has not yet lived. This future is one that Miller compels us collectively to rewrite, inviting us to change his potential life and life-story in the process. Dee Heddon argues that Miller's commitment to and faith in the transformative potential of live performance enacts a resistance to those pejorative terms too easily thrown at autobiographical performance: Miller may work from his ‘self’, but his work is far from solipsistic, egotistic, or narcissistic. Dee Heddon makes and teaches autobiographical performance, and her writing has appeared in Performance Research, Studies in Theatre Production, Research in Drama Education, Reconstructions, and M/C. Her Devising Performances: Histories and Practices, co-authored with Jane Milling, is forthcoming from Palgrave.