Theatre History

The Latest

Theatre and Politics in Malawi
Essay

Theatre and Politics in Malawi

by Misheck Mzumara
2 April 2019
From Cultural Appropriation to Self-Representation
Essay

From Cultural Appropriation to Self-Representation

A History of Roma Theatre in Romania

by Mihaela Drăgan
10 March 2019
Striving for the Summit
Essay

Striving for the Summit

The Mountain Hawaiian Theatre Artists Must Climb

by Ākea Kahikina
7 March 2019
three actors onstage
Theatre and Politics in Malawi
Essay

Theatre and Politics in Malawi

2 April 2019

Mischeck Mzumara looks at the fearful realities of political involvement in Malawian theatre throughout history.

Seven Romani actors sit together looking at the camera
From Cultural Appropriation to Self-Representation
Essay

From Cultural Appropriation to Self-Representation

A History of Roma Theatre in Romania

10 March 2019

Mihaela Dragan looks at the way Roma are and have been portrayed in theatre in Romania and how Romani artists are working to reclaim their stories.

The promotional image for a production of Battle of Kuamoʻo
Striving for the Summit
Essay

Striving for the Summit

The Mountain Hawaiian Theatre Artists Must Climb

7 March 2019

Ākea Kahikina traces the geneology of hana keaka (Hawaiian theatre), and muses on the future of the theatrical form.

performers dancing
Hawaiʻi’s Theatre Landscape
Essay

Hawaiʻi’s Theatre Landscape

Majestic and Rugged as its Terrain

6 March 2019

Kiki Rivera talks about the importance of telling stories from underrepresented communities in Hawai‘i’s theatrical landscape.

Perfomers on stage in front of a volcano
Carrying On Our Cultural Responsibility Through Theatre
Essay

Carrying On Our Cultural Responsibility Through Theatre

5 March 2019

Kau‘i Kaina writes about combining her love of theatre with her desire to be part of the Hawaiian language and cultural revitalization. 

performer in traditional Hawai'i clothing
Hanakeaka
Essay

Hanakeaka

Hawaiian Medium Theatre Inspiring Hawaiian Identity

4 March 2019

Kaliko Baker looks at how hanakeaka—Hawaiian medium theatre—has had a huge impact in the Hawaiian language revitalization movement.

two people look at each other intensely
Put Some Latinx Representation in Your Puta Syllabus
Essay

Put Some Latinx Representation in Your Puta Syllabus

20 February 2019

Andres Osorio reflects on the fact that as a student of playwriting, he was never once assigned a play by a Latinx writer.

two actors in costume
Laughing Matters
Essay

Laughing Matters

How Comedy Tells Us Who We Are

14 February 2019

Professor Matthew McMahan talks about the importance of understanding comedy’s theatrical history: how it has evolved, what it says about a society, and why the genre shouldn’t be forgotten in the American theatre.

a woman looks at two paintings
Celebrating Historic Milestones While Critically Understanding the Past
Essay

Celebrating Historic Milestones While Critically Understanding the Past

15 January 2019

Gaven Trinidad examines the recent exhibition Dance We Must: Treasures from Jacob’s Pillow and wrestles with cultural appropriation vs. cultural appreciation when it comes to costume design throughout history.

outside of a stone building
Exploring the Work and Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski with the Stories from the Eastern West Podcast, Part 2
Podcast

Exploring the Work and Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski with the Stories from the Eastern West Podcast, Part 2

Theatre History Podcast #72

20 December 2018

We welcome back Stories from the Eastern West for Part 2 of their exploration of the life and work of Polish theatre director Jerzy Grotowski.

Black and white image of three people standing on their heads
Exploring the Work and Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski with the Stories from the Eastern West Podcast, Part 1
Podcast

Exploring the Work and Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski with the Stories from the Eastern West Podcast, Part 1

Theatre History Podcast #71

6 December 2018

The Theatre History Podcast is proud to partner with Stories from the Eastern West to present the first of a two-part episode on the life and work of revolutionary theatre director Jerzy Grotowski.

students crowding and surrounding the exterior of an university building
A Sit-In at the Library: ’68 Revisited
Video

A Sit-In at the Library: ’68 Revisited

Performance and discussion of The Fall by Sister Sylvester

Monday 26 November 2018
New York City

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center in New York City presented the forum A Sit-In at the Library: ’68 Revisited and a performance of The Fall by Sister Sylvester livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Monday 26 November 2018 at 3:15 p.m. PST (Los Angeles) / 5:15 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 6:15 p.m. EST (New York). 

Title page of a restoration-era edition of Macbeth
Restoring An Alternate Version of Shakespeare’s Works
Podcast

Restoring An Alternate Version of Shakespeare’s Works

Theatre History Podcast #70

8 November 2018

The Restoration was an era of theatrical innovation and rebirth in England. It also saw a number of strikingly radical revisions of William Shakespeare's original plays. Dr. Amanda Eubanks Winkler joins us to talk about her work with the Performing Restoration Shakespeare project, which is studying these adaptations and helping to revive them for the stage.

Old print depicting a marriage
Tracing the Origins of the Freak Show with Dr. Matt DiCintio
Podcast

Tracing the Origins of the Freak Show with Dr. Matt DiCintio

Theatre History Podcast #69

22 October 2018

In this week's Theatre History Podcast, Matt DiCintio on the origins of the freak show and its lasting influence on our perceptions of disability, race, and physical difference. 

four actors in costume
A Revolt of the Beavers for Our Time
Essay

A Revolt of the Beavers for Our Time

10 October 2018

Theatre professor Robert Hubbard writes about Kit Bix’s recent adaptation of Louis Lantz and Oscar Saul’s 1937 play Revolt of the Beavers for the 2018 Minnesota Fringe Festival.

Illustration of a woman in a brightly colored dress
Learning About Mary Ann Yates with Dr. Elaine McGirr
Podcast

Learning About Mary Ann Yates with Dr. Elaine McGirr

Theatre History Podcast #68

8 October 2018

Why is Mary Ann Yates the greatest actress you've never heard of? Dr. Elaine McGirr introduces us to this eighteenth-century star and recounts her fascinating career.

Draswing of a man tied to railroad tracks.
Dr. Derek Miller on the History of Performance and Copyright
Podcast

Dr. Derek Miller on the History of Performance and Copyright

24 September 2018

In this week's Theatre History Podcast, Dr. Derek Miller joins us to talk about the origins and development of theatrical copyright.

Dr. Sara BT Thiel on Pregnancy on the Stage in Early Modern English Drama
Podcast

Dr. Sara BT Thiel on Pregnancy on the Stage in Early Modern English Drama

4 September 2018

How do you depict pregnancy when you're working with an all-male cast? Dr. Sara BT Thiel joins us to discuss this and other issues connected to pregnancy on the Stuart stage.

Alaska Native Theatre Comes of Age
Essay

Alaska Native Theatre Comes of Age

19 August 2018

Vera Starbard (Tlingit/Dena’ina) introduces the series on Alaskan theatre through the lens of Alaska Native performance and storytelling.

Twenty-five Meditations on SITI Company’s Theater Piece No. 1
Essay

Twenty-five Meditations on SITI Company’s Theater Piece No. 1

29 July 2018

David Dudley explores the story behind John Cage’s Theater Piece No. 1 and discuses SITI Company’s recent production of it, which was conceived and directed by Anne Bogart.

Playing Around with Nineteenth-Century Theatre in Dr. Robert Davis’s Broadway
Podcast

Playing Around with Nineteenth-Century Theatre in Dr. Robert Davis’s Broadway

1849

25 July 2018

Could you make it as the manager of a New York City theatre in the 1840s? That's the question that Dr. Robert Davis's game and app Broadway:1849 poses to players. Robert joins us to talk about the rough-and-tumble world of New York's antebellum theatre.

Playwright Edouard Elvis Bvouma on Cameroonian Theatre / Le dramaturge Edouard Elvis Bvouma discute du théâtre au Cameroun
Essay

Playwright Edouard Elvis Bvouma on Cameroonian Theatre / Le dramaturge Edouard Elvis Bvouma discute du théâtre au Cameroun

16 July 2018

Heather Jeanne Denyer interviews Cameroonian playwright Edouard Elvis Bvouma about the country’s theatrical landscape, touching on topics like the low number of companies that regularly produce work, female artists in the field, and building public interest in the art form. / Dans cet entretien, Heather Jeanne Denyer discute avec le dramaturge camerounais Edouard Elvis Bvouma de la scène théâtrale dans son pays, en abordant des sujets tels que le manque de compagnies, la création par les femmes, ainsi que le développement et l’intérêt du public pour cet art.

Learning About Modern Indonesian Theatre with Dr. Cobina Gillitt
Podcast

Learning About Modern Indonesian Theatre with Dr. Cobina Gillitt

10 July 2018

Dr. Cobina Gillitt joins the Theatre History Podcast to introduce us to the work of Putu Wijaya and his Teater Mandiri and to explain how modern Indonesian theatre has developed amid the turmoil of its recent history.

Looking for “Lesbians” in God of Vengeance and Indecent
Essay

Looking for “Lesbians” in God of Vengeance and Indecent

3 July 2018

Writer Warren Hoffman dives into the history of God of Vengeance, the Yiddish play from 1907 that inspired Paula Vogel's Indecent, and the questions around language and sexuality the play raised and continues to raise.

After the Big Top
Podcast

After the Big Top

CarlosAlexis Cruz on the Evolution of Modern Circus

27 June 2018

How has the circus changed from its earliest origins to today? CarlosAlexis Cruz joins us to explain how acrobatics and storytelling have come to replace the big top and the three-ring circus.