2014 – 2016
Grants and funding:
Australian Research Council Linkage Project
Associate Professor Anne Harris (RMIT/DERC), Professor Stacy Holman Jones (Monash University)
Throughout its two-year development process, the team facilitated workshops, panel discussions, and professional development opportunities with education professionals, in order to expand the conversation about how although experiences for queer students are improving, queer and trans* teachers are still largely underserved by the education system. Using findings from these transcripts, the play charts the journeys of six composite characters including lesbian, gay, queer, m2f and f2m trans* teachers, who confront in diverse ways the challenges, joys, and triumphs of being queer teachers in 21st-century Australian schools.
Since 2015, Heavier Than Air has been performed publicly in four countries (Australia, Singapore, USA, and Scotland) and has sparked a call for the research to be extended further into a national study. The play is used by educators and creatives for organisational change and social and emotional wellbeing staff development.
The play’s development has been detailed in the book Writing for Performance (Harris & Holman Jones 2016 Sense).
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