Training

A teenager in the tiny island state of Malta in the 1980s had no prospects of a full-time education in the Arts. At the age of 16 I joined the pupil-worker scheme and spent every work-phase with TeleMalta Corporation, the state-owned telecommunications provider for Malta which eventually became Maltacom plc. At that time, TeleMalta operated a broadcasting division and getting a full-time job in radio or television was why I really chose to work for this corporation. it took me three years to secure the employment I wanted with TeleMalta’s broadcasting division. Once I started working for Radio Malta, I decided to go train professionally with the BBC in the UK. I had no financial support and TeleMalta granted me study leave without pay for the duration of my course at the BBC. I quit working for TeleMalta in 1991, just before the corporation surrendered its broadcasting division to what is now known as Public Broadcasting Services (Malta) Ltd.

In 1992 I enrolled for a B.A. in Communications & Theatre Studies at the University of Malta. Things had changed radically since the time I was first interested in pursuing undergraduate studies at the University of Malta. After working for seven years I chose to become a professional student. I was very active in student organizations: president of the Malta University Film Club and executive member of the University Students’ Council. I spent my third year as a university student at the Virginia Commonwealth University through the International Student Exchange Program. At VCU I focused on theatre directing, and through a research grant from the honors program of the university I dedicated most of my time working with my own experimental theatre group, Platonium. I graduated summa cum laude from the University of Malta in 1996.

While at VCU, I was encouraged to pursue a Master’s degree. I found the right program for me at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts: Performance Studies. Through Performance Studies I discovered a way to study the connections between all my interests: theatre, radio, music, television, writing, and the Internet. After getting my M.A. in Performance Studies I realized that I wanted to focus all my attention on exploring the Internet as a medium in its own right. In my Ph.D. dissertation I explored the fate of online performance as more and more of the Internet becomes corporate and commercial.

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