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 to define notions useful to the first two approaches.

In particular, W produces games, a lexicon of operational notions, a critical seminar, a theoretical apparatus, articles, conferences, research sessions, as well as school visits.

W-Theory strives to formulate relations between the terms defined by W-Practice and by W-Critique. This makes it a theory of the theatrical relation.

W-Practice and W-Critique are both nomenclatures insofar as they deal with naming phenomena or aspects of action in a performance settings. These definitions are purely nominal. In and of themselves, they have no pretense of being truthful or accurate in relation to everyday language. The terms retained are meant only to designate the same thing each time they are used by those who have agreed ahead of time on their meaning.

W-Theory, then, tries to define and and organize all the terms it uses as logically and as coherently as possible, without which they would serve no purpose at all.
Thus, all of W-Theory consists of the whole of these logically articulated relations. In this sense, it is not a descriptive theory. It doesn't work by suggesting truths, but by definitions and cross-references. It is pragmatic. Its only truth is to be functional - that is, thought-provoking - for those who are inclined to use it. Its only ambition is to work correctly.

W-Theory is being developed jointly with practical and critical research. [sessions de recherche]