The Center for World Performance Studies (CWPS) at the University of Michigan Residential College was established in 2000 to serve the needs of faculty and a student body with an interest in the discipline of performance studies. The inaugural celebration in early 2001 filled the halls of the International Institute with music, song, and dance as visiting and University campus faculty, scholars, and performance artists participated in the formal opening of the center.
Since that time, CWPS has worked to offer a multidisciplinary space for artists, performers, scholars, and the community for intellectual interactions. To achieve this goal, the center annually funds student and faculty events such as seminars, roundtables, public lectures, demonstrations, and performances. CWPS also facilitates an Artist and Scholar Residency Program that brings international artists to campus. This program leaves international footprints, as artists and students alike share their unique experiences, new performance styles, and research findings with the university community.
In line with the University’s commitment to globalization and diversity in the twenty first century, the Center fulfills a vital need by privileging the study of world performance (traditionally excluded from Western arts conservatories). It raises the awareness of and advocates for the greater inclusion of underrepresented cultures within the academy. It provides graduate training and supports faculty research. The Center collaborates within and across LSA, Rackham, and the professional schools and colleges throughout the larger University, through four core programs:
- Scholar/Artist Residencies, Symposia and Classroom Teaching
- Graduate Training with Certificate in World Performance Studies
- Funding for Faculty and Student Research, and Annual Faculty Symposium
- Co-Sponsorships with International Institute Area Studies Centers, Departments and Units throughout the University