W is a research collective that studies action in a performance setting. What does it mean to act as others watch? What characterizes the relation we call theater?

To answer these questions, W simultaneously develops three complementary approaches: a practice, which builds tools and techniques for the actor; a critical method, which suggests reception guidelines for the spectator; and a theory, which works towards defining notions useful to the first two approaches.

In particular, W produces games, a score writing software, a lexicon of operational notions, workshops and practical sessions, critical seminars, as well as articles and conferences.


  1. Générique is a game that takes the form of a post-show Q&A between spectators and performers. It consists of collectively imagining a show as if it had just taken place, through the interplay of questions and answers between each group.

  2. The players are divided into performers (three to six people) and spectators (up to one hundred).

  3. The game begins when one of the performers greets and thanks the audience through a brief introduction along the lines of: "Good evening, thank you for staying for the discussion. We’re very curious to hear your impressions of the piece you just saw. If you have any remarks, observations, or even critiques to share, please do. They’ll help us do a better job next time. Are there any questions?”

  4. Spectators take turns asking performers questions. These questions progressively trace out the contours of the imaginary show.

  5. Performers take turns answering spectators’ questions, gradually inventing reasons for the spectacular elements they attribute to the show. These answers ensure the imaginary show’s internal coherence. Roles (choreographer, actor, lighting designer…) can be handed out during the game.

  6. Performers and spectators alike take pains not to contradict the story of the imaginary show that is being created.

  7. Variations:
    a) The shower: one of the performers can arrive ten minutes into the round and hit the ground running.
    b) The demonstration: excerpts can be improvised as examples.
    c) The moderator: one of the performers can act as debate moderator.

  8. One round lasts between thirty minutes and an hour. The game ends when one of the performers thanks the audience