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Theatre Education, Pedagogy, and Training

In this section, content focuses on best practices and challenges regarding education and scholarship in the theatre. Check out the Latinx Theatre Commons’ series Pedagogy Notebook, where artists, educators, and scholars share their process and work in the classroom, and David Dudley’s long-running guide to theatre education.

The Latest

Opening the Channel with Masi Asare
Podcast
Opening the Channel with Masi Asare
by Masi Asare, Leticia Ridley, Jordan Ealey
28 February 2024
Canales Abiertos 2023: El Cruce | Open Channels 2023: The Crossing
Video
Canales Abiertos 2023: El Cruce | Open Channels 2023: The Crossing
Finding Our Place in the Caribbean Cultural Landscape
Sunday 14 January 2024
New Orleans, Santiago de Cuba, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo
Resisting “Yes, And” Culture and Learning to Say No
Essay
Resisting “Yes, And” Culture and Learning to Say No
by Sara Božin
8 January 2024
A promotional graphic for Daughters of Lorraine.
Opening the Channel with Masi Asare
Podcast

Opening the Channel with Masi Asare

28 February 2024

Masi Asare is an assistant professor of theater and performance studies at Northwestern University. She is a songwriter and dramatist and also works as a performance scholar specializing in the study of race and vocal sound and musicals. On this episode, hosts Jordan Ealey and Leticia Ridley interview Masi on her experiences as a Black woman working in musical theatre and why Black women’s vocal training is so important. 

El Cruce event poster.
Canales Abiertos 2023: El Cruce | Open Channels 2023: The Crossing
Video

Canales Abiertos 2023: El Cruce | Open Channels 2023: The Crossing

Finding Our Place in the Caribbean Cultural Landscape

Sunday 14 January 2024
New Orleans, Santiago de Cuba, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo

Members of the global learning community Canales Abiertos | Open Channels premiered a new thirty-five minute documentary video together about their one-week residency in Santiago de Cuba in July 2023.

A performer with a glum facial expression sits on the floor during a show.
Resisting “Yes, And” Culture and Learning to Say No
Essay

Resisting “Yes, And” Culture and Learning to Say No

8 January 2024

Sara Bozin explores the advice for performers within the theatre industry of saying “yes” to everything, how it infringes on the autonomy of theatremakers, and why and how one must learn to say no.

Three actors in brightly colored clothing and masks perform outside.
Commedia Gets a New Face
Essay

Commedia Gets a New Face

14 December 2023

Mask maker Tara Cariaso details her process for creating new masks for Commedia dell’arte, alongside a pedagogy that removes the harmful stereotypes originally embedded in the form and creates space for more actor agency. 

A promotional graphic for the Kunafa and Shay podcast.
Affinity Spaces for MENA/SWANA and LGBTQIA+ Artists
Podcast

Affinity Spaces for MENA/SWANA and LGBTQIA+ Artists

13 December 2023

Affinity spaces have been an undercurrent of discussion across the three seasons of Kunafa and Shay. In this live session at the 2023 MENATMA Convening at Golden Thread Productions in San Francisco, in partnership with Mizna+RAWIfest, Marina and Nabra sit down with artists to discuss the nuances of MENA and SWANA affinity spaces and MENATMA, Mizna, and RAWI’s roles in facilitating national cultural affinity among artists of intersectional identities.

Failure, Fascism, and Teachers in American Theatre: Pedagogy of the Oppressors Event Poster.
Failure, Fascism, and Teachers in American Theatre: Pedagogy of the Oppressors
Video

Failure, Fascism, and Teachers in American Theatre: Pedagogy of the Oppressors

An Evening with Jim Wilson and Jordan Schildcrout Discussing Wilson's Latest Book

Monday 13 November 2023
United States

Join us for an evening with Jim Wilson and Jordan Schildcrout discussing Wilson's latest book Failure, Fascism, and Teachers in American Theatre: Pedagogy of the Oppressors. This timely and accessible book explores the shifting representations of schoolteachers and professors in plays and performances primarily from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries in the United States.

event poster for the Middle Eastern North African Theater Makers Alliance (MENATMA) 2023 convening.
Fourth Annual Convening of the Middle Eastern North African Theater Makers Alliance (MENATMA)
Video

Fourth Annual Convening of the Middle Eastern North African Theater Makers Alliance (MENATMA)

Conversations About the Present and Future of Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) Theatre

Saturday 28 October and Sunday 29 October 2023
San Francisco, CA

Does a Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) leader necessarily mean it's easier for MENA work to get produced? How do MENA theatremakers and educators from K-12 to university settings navigate questions of cultural competency, representation, and omission? How can we work together with other networks of color towards shared goals for our communities? MENATMA presented a weekend of intercommunity dialogues, panels, and keynotes to explore the state of MENA theater and artist sustainability moving forward.

Ten actors link arms with each other during a performance.
Balancing Trauma and Joy While Teaching Queer Theatre History
Essay

Balancing Trauma and Joy While Teaching Queer Theatre History

24 October 2023

Theatre professor John Michael DiResta reflects on teaching queer theatre history to students who have had very different lived queer experiences than he had growing up. By investigating queer theatrical history from a contemporary lens and with an invitation to engage and make something new, his students were able to find the joy in history where they previously only saw trauma.

A large group of people standing in a circle on a stage with one person crouched in the center.
An Approach to Content Warnings in the Theatre Classroom
Essay

An Approach to Content Warnings in the Theatre Classroom

23 October 2023

Theatre educator Sofia Lindgren Galloway explores the complicated question of whether one should use content warnings when teaching theatre, and offers an approach for others to consider.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
The Influence and Impact of the Negro Ensemble Company
Podcast

The Influence and Impact of the Negro Ensemble Company

18 October 2023

This episode focuses on the iconic Negro Ensemble Company (NEC). Hosts Leticia Ridley and Jordan Ealey delve into the NEC’s founding and history, its track record of producing successful Black plays, and its legacy within Black theatre and performance.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
Staging Black Intimacies
Podcast

Staging Black Intimacies

4 October 2023

Hosts Jordan Ealey and Leticia Ridley interview Kaja Dunn, who is an intimacy professional, director, actor, and scholar. They discuss her journey as a theatre artist, the importance of intimacy coordinator for theatre and television, and Kaja’s own artistry and creativity.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
What Is Black Theatre?
Podcast

What Is Black Theatre?

20 September 2023

This episode will discuss the age old questions of what is Black theatre? What is a Black play? How do you know one when you see it? Leticia Ridley and Jordan Ealey provide an overview of the some of the most popular commentary on this question from Black theatre theorists of the past such as W.E.B Dubois, Alain Locke, and Alice Childress.

Gender Euphoria teaser image featuring guest profile image.
The Queer-Trans Performance Family Tree is more of a Galaxy
Podcast

The Queer-Trans Performance Family Tree is more of a Galaxy

With Guest H. May

13 September 2023

Dr. H. May joins host Nicolas Shannon Savard, who introduces the Queer-Trans Performance Family Tree Project, an interactive, open-access digital exhibit visually connecting trans artists across the United States to the collectives and communities who have sustained our work. This episode explores the role of mentorship in both the research for the project and in their own work as gender nonconforming theatremakers.

Gender Euphoria teaser image featuring guest profile images.
Queer Archival Praxis Roundtable
Podcast

Queer Archival Praxis Roundtable

With Guests David Silvernail, Janet Werther, Victoria Lafave, Jordan Ealey, and Kelli Crump

6 September 2023

What role does white supremacy play in the creation of the queer theatre canon? What power and what responsibility do we—as queer theatremakers, historians, and educators—have to challenge canons and archives that define “queer” almost exclusively as white and cisgender? Artist-scholars Janet Werther, Victoria LaFave, Jordan Ealey, David Silvernail, and Kelli Crump join host Nicolas Shannon Savard to tackle these questions and to queer the archive.

Gender Euphoria teaser image featuring guest profile images.
Queer-Trans Intimacy: One Foot in the Academy and the Other in the Nightclub
Podcast

Queer-Trans Intimacy: One Foot in the Academy and the Other in the Nightclub

With Guests Raja Benz and Joy Brooke Fairfield

5 July 2023

Nicolas Shannon asks Joy Brooke Fairfield and Raja Benz how their intimacy work is informed by queer theory and critical theory. Their conversation bounces between queer of color theory, decolonial theory, disability theory, and the dim glow of the night club; between past, present, and future; between the ideas they’re sure of and the ones they’re working out in real time. Bonus! It comes with dozens of recommended readings.

Gender Euphoria teaser image.
Queer-Trans Intimacy Work: Cracking Gender Open
Podcast

Queer-Trans Intimacy Work: Cracking Gender Open

With Guests Dr. Joy Brooke Fairfield and Raja Benz

21 June 2023

In the first part of a two-part conversation on queer-trans intimacy direction and choreography, Nicolas talks with Theatrical Intimacy Education faculty members Dr. Joy Brooke Fairfield and Raja Benz about their courses Working with Trans & Non-Binary Artists and Staging Intimacy Beyond the Binary. They discuss crafting courses that are less Trans-101 and more cracking gender open, resisting patriarchal and colonialist scripts, and bringing queer culture into the rehearsal room.

Gender Euphoria teaser image featuring guest profile image.
Making Space for Thriving Queer Communities Through Applied Theatre
Podcast

Making Space for Thriving Queer Communities Through Applied Theatre

With Guest Dr. Jesse O’Rear

7 June 2023

Host Nicolas Shannon Savard talks with Dr. Jesse O’Rear about applied theatre with LGBTQ students on college campuses. Jesse describes some alternatives to traditional models of bystander intervention and diversity trainings to create embodied learning opportunities for LGBTQ students to step into positions of leadership and for audience-participants to practice “kinesthetic allyship.”

Five people performing in a large room with black walls covered in random items.
How Training and Education Can Create a Greener Performing Arts Sector
Essay

How Training and Education Can Create a Greener Performing Arts Sector

30 May 2023

Iphigenia Taxopoulou discusses the need for increased environmental literacy in the performing arts sector and describes many forward-thinking initiatives that train students and professionals alike for ecological transition.

From the Ground Up Podcast Teaser image featuring guest profile image.
SoulWork and Soul Searching
Podcast

SoulWork and Soul Searching

17 May 2023

Culture worker and theatre practitioner Dr. Cristal Chanelle Truscott provides a primer on her SoulWork process, applies it to her present processes, and expands our horizons as artists.

Portrait of Marion Peter Holt.
Memorial: Marion Peter Holt
Video

Memorial: Marion Peter Holt

An Evening Remembering the Late Professor of Theatre, Author, and Translator Marion Peter Holt

Monday 15 May 2023
New York City

Join us for an evening remembering the late professor of theatre, author, and translator Marion Peter Holt, professor emeritus (theatre, Graduate Center, and Spanish, College of Staten Island). Marion helped to spread knowledge of Catalan and Spanish drama throughout the United States and the world.

Six performers in jumpsuits dance on either side of another performer who is dressed in an usher costume.
The Need for Scholarship on Black Queer Theatrical Culture
Essay

The Need for Scholarship on Black Queer Theatrical Culture

24 April 2023

Jessica Elaine Ellison writes about the need for robust scholarship on Black queer theatrical culture.

Event poster for HBCU Theatre Summit.
HBCU Theatre Summit’s “To Be Young, Gifted, and Black” Monologue Showcase
Video

HBCU Theatre Summit’s “To Be Young, Gifted, and Black” Monologue Showcase

We Will Dream: New Works Festival

Saturday 15 April 2023
New Orleans, Louisiana

Featuring monologues by HBCU college students. The HBCU Theatre Summit is for Black theatre students as they navigate the world of the arts.

Event poster for HBCU Theatre Summit.
HBCU Theatre Summit’s Keynote Speech by Actor Doug Spearman
Video

HBCU Theatre Summit’s Keynote Speech by Actor Doug Spearman

We Will Dream: New Works Festival

Friday 14 April 2023
New Orleans, Louisiana

Keynote speech delivered by actor Doug Spearman (Noah's Arc). The HBCU Theatre Summit is for Black theatre students as they navigate the world of the arts.

A man stands at a podium on stage and speaks.
Fifteen Lessons on Theatre from Maureen Shea
Essay

Fifteen Lessons on Theatre from Maureen Shea

6 April 2023

Alex Ates honors his mentor, the late director Maureen Shea, by sharing learnings from his time with her.

From the Ground Up Podcast Teaser image.
Maintaining Connections from the Hyperlocal to the International
Podcast

Maintaining Connections from the Hyperlocal to the International

5 April 2023

Carlos Uriona and Jennifer Johnson, co-artistic directors at Double Edge Theatre, connect with Jeffrey Mosser to discuss how working in rural Massachusetts for over thirty years has enabled them to share art on the world stage.