Photo of Tamara Tomic-Vajagic
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Research output per year

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Personal profile


My identity is shaped through travels and translations. Just as I came to dance through visual arts, I traveled geographically too. Before coming to London and Roehampton, I lived, studied and worked in several countries. I completed BA in Fine Arts (combining practice and theory of painting, print-making and sculpture) in Serbia, Belgrade, University of Fine Arts. Belgrade is also my city, where I was born and where I spent my formative years. I completed an MA in Dance Studies at York University in Toronto, Canada -- my adopted city and country, in which I lived for over a decade, before coming to London to work on my doctoral research at Dance Department here at University of Roehampton. Now I am a Londoner. My perspective thus combines kinds of trans-cultural and cross-disciplinary experiences, upon which I also draw in my teaching.

I joined the Department as a full-time Lecturer upon completion of my PhD studies at Roehampton. Studying here was a great experience, and discovering the teaching simultaneosly, during that process, alowed for important insights into different possibilities for observing and thinking about dances. As I come to dance studies from visual art, my understanding of world around me through observation proved to be a stimulating aspect in both practices. In dance research and teaching I try to explore what can be learnt about dancing through our visuality, in addition to exploring movement through other parts of my body.


PhD, MA Dance, BA Fine Arts, FHEA.

Research interests

In dance research I aim to bridge the experiences of the dancer and the spectator. I explore corelations between the performer's ideas about their performances, and the ways in which such conceptualisations might affect what the viewer sees in the dance. My methodology often involves dialogues with professional dancers, which in turn inform my writing and research. I also organise public events with dancers as collaborators ( The Forsythe Company at Work, June 2013, at University of Roehampton and Sadler's Wells; Dana Caspersen's workshops Violence:Recode at University of Roehampton (May 2015) and UNDER | STAND: Action Dialogues on Race (Feb 2019, supported by TECHNĒ).

My recent research projects centre on dance and visual culture concepts, such as self/portraiture in art videos and dance performance; aesthetic of practice clothes/leotard ballet costumes and impact on dancers' performances; collaborations between fashion designers and choreographers (William Forsythe and Issey Miyake); post-dramatic theatre performance as a case of theatre-based FOMO, and others. My upcoming research project will consider modes of abstraction in 20th century ballet, and idea of 'bedroom discos' and hanging out, as observed in dancing as found in video-based fine arts. 


I teach and contribute to a number of contextual modules on undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Those include BA Thinking Through Dance, Dance Analysis and Philosophy, Dance, Gender and Sexualities, and BA Dissertation; MA/MFA/MRes Ways of Knowing, and Mediated Choreography.

Currently I co-supervise four PhD projects, on topics of:

• dance spectatorship/spectator's experience of the dance work;

• dance and visual culture concepts (such as fashion design and costumes);

• the process of dancing in the studio, as a practice of togetherness;

• ballet dancers' experience in rehearsals and ballet classes. 

I invite proposals for PhD projects on dance and visual culture (including fine arts and popular media, such as fashion, cinematography, digital/social media photographic works, and social media as a space of performance). I'm also interested in issues of dance and visual representation), dance and spectatorship in theatre and post-digital space. I have specialised in the dancer's contribution and agency, particularly in  ballet during the 20th/21st centuries. 



Professional affiliations

Dance Studies Association,

Performance Studies International PSi,

TaPRA (Performance and New Technologies Working Group)


Consultancy work

Editorial board member (Reviews Editor) International Journal of Screendance, 2017-2019

Adjunct curator Sans Souci Screendance Festival 2018-2019

Advisory work for Swiss National Science Foundation

Peer review work for scholarly publications (including Dance Research Journal , Critical Journal in Men's Fashion)

External examiner BA Hons. Dance University of Lincoln (2014-2018), BA Hons. in Dance Studies, University of Malta (2019- )


Education/Academic qualification

University of Roehampton

Award Date: 7 Mar 2013

University of Arts Belgrade, The School of Fine Arts

York University

External positions

Visiting lecturer, Hollins University, European Summer Residency

Jul 2015Jul 2017

Research Output

Book Review : Nicoletta Misler , The Russian Art of Movement 1920-1930

Tomic-Vajagic, T., 29 Nov 2019, In : Dance Research. 37, 2, p. 272-275

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review

Open Access

Shape-shifters and Colombe’s folds: Issey Miyake’s ‘one piece of cloth’ and balletic topologies in William Forsythe’s The Loss of Small Detail

Tomic-Vajagic, T., Dec 2019, Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Ballet. Farrugia-Kriel, K. & Nunes, J. (eds.). Oxford University Press, (Oxford Handbook).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

The Reverberations of Andante

Tomic-Vajagic, T., 2019, (Accepted/In press) Igor and Moreno Andante.

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Travel Award

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Recipient), 2015

Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively


  • 3 Media article or participation
  • 1 Participation in conference
  • 1 Editorial Activity
  • 1 Invited talk

Open Dialogue No.2: Dance On Ensemble in conversation with Tamara Tomic-Vajagic

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Speaker)

2 Mar 2018

Activity: Public engagement and outreachMedia article or participation

Quando la danza incontra la moda: Intervista a Tamara Tomic-Vajagic

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Interviewee), & Alice Murtas (Organiser)

5 Dec 2017

Activity: Public engagement and outreachMedia article or participation

Performance Studies International, Hamburg 8-11 June 2017

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Speaker)

9 Jun 2017

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference

Panel 2: What does the museum do for dance?

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Speaker)

9 Nov 2017

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

Invited speaker : New East Cinema: Yugoslavia, How Ideology Moved Our Collective Body by Marta Popivoda, 2013

Tamara Tomic-Vajagic (Speaker)

25 May 2016

Activity: Public engagement and outreachMedia article or participation


Experiencing emotional import in twenty-first century Euro-American contemporary theatre dance

Author: Piquero Álvarez, L., 18 Jun 2019

Supervisor: Pakes, A. (Supervisor) & Tomic-Vajagic, T. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis