School of Humanities and Sciences
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Assistant Professor of Theater and Performance Studies
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsI am a live performance creator and director. I direct theater, musicals, opera, and I create digital media projects. I am always looking for new projects and interdisciplinary collaborations. I am interested in ways that technology can be used to tell stories, in virtual reality and games, and in live performance situations. I have created immersive theater pieces, and I enjoy working with new playwrights and writers to develop and shape their work.
Professor of Theater and Performance Studies and of Classics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsStanford Repertory Theater (SRT) is set to launch its 17th summer festival, this summer (2015) dedicated to the work of Noel Coward. Our mainstage production is *Hay Fever* and secondstage production *A Coward Cabaret*. The festival includes an all-day community symposium, continuing studies course *Theater on Theater*, and film festival on Coward. Our 2016 SRT Festival will focus on "Theater and Labor" with productions of Naomi Wallace's *Slaughter City* and Clifford Odets' *Waiting for Lefty."
I continue working on a long-term project entitled "Bilingual Beckett," which has included Stanford Repertory Theater's bilingual production of Samuel Beckett's *Happy Days/Oh les beaux jours," performed at Stanford, San Francisco, Montpellier, and Paris.
Professor Eleni Papalexiou at the University of the Peloponnese and I are collaborating to develop a summer institute in the Argolid, "Ancient Tragedies/Modern Stages," exploring contemporary approaches to staging Greek tragedy.
In winter 2016, SRT will remount "Words and Images to End All War," a theater piece I developed this year on World War I, supported by Stanford Arts Institute, Stanford Continuing Studies, TAPS, and Art and Art History.
SRT's "Comparative Clytemnestra" (performance/lecture focusing on the various treatments of Clytemnestra in Greek tragedy, with actress Courtney Walsh) will travel to New Zealand and Australia in the fall of 2015. This work will find its way into the revision of my 1992 *Greek Tragic Theatre,* which will come out in a new version entitled *Understanding Greek Tragedy* in 2016
Professor (Teaching) of Theater and Performance Studies
BioJanice Ross, Professor in the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies and former faculty director of ITALIC, Stanford's residence based Freshman arts immersion program, has a BA with Honors from UC Berkeley and MA and Ph.D degrees from Stanford. Her research interests and four books focus on the intersections of social issues and their expression through performance. They include, Like A Bomb Going Off: Leonid Yakobson and Ballet as Resistance in Soviet Russia (Yale Univ. Press 2015), Anna Halprin: Experience as Dance (University of California Press 2007),winner of a de la Torre Bueno Award 2008 Special Citation, San Francisco Ballet at 75 (Chronicle Books 2007) and Moving Lessons: The Beginning of Dance in American Education, (University of Wisconsin 2001). Her research interests concern performance and social justice with a particular focus on tensions between political and aesthetic expression. Her essays on dance have been published in several anthologies including Dignity in Motion: Dance, Human Rights and Social Justice, edited by Naomi Jackson (Scarecrow Press 2008), Perspectives on Israeli and Jewish Dance, ed. Judith Brin Ingber, (Wayne State University Press, 2008), for The San Francisco Tape Music Center: 1960s Counter-culture and the Avant-Garde, Performance and Ritual, edited by Mark Franco (Routledge 2007), Everything Was Possible (Re) Inventing Dance in the 1960s, edited by Sally Banes (University of Wisconsin Press 2003), "Improvisation as Child's Play," in Caught by Surprise: Essays on Art and Improvisation, edited by Ann Cooper Albright and David Gere (Wesleyan University press 2003). Her awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, two Stanford Humanities Center Fellowships, a Fulbright Fellowship to Israel, as well as research grants from the Iris Litt Fund of the Clayman Institute for Research on Women and Gender, the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture and the 2016 CORD Award for Outstanding Contributions to Dance Research. Her articles on dance have appeared in numerous publications including The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times. She is past President of the international Society of Dance History Scholars.
Professor of German Studies and of Theater and Performance Studies
BioMatthew Wilson Smith’s interests include modern theatre and relations between science, technology, and the arts. His book The Nervous Stage: 19th-century Neuroscience and the Birth of Modern Theatre (Oxford, 2017) explores historical intersections between theatre and neurology and traces the construction of a “neural subject” over the course of the nineteenth century. It was a finalist for the George Freedley Memorial Award of the Theater Library Association. His previous book, The Total Work of Art: From Bayreuth to Cyberspace (Routledge, 2007), presents a history and theory of attempts to unify the arts; the book places such diverse figures as Wagner, Moholy-Nagy, Brecht, Riefenstahl, Disney, Warhol, and contemporary cyber-artists within a coherent genealogy of multimedia performance. He is the editor of Georg Büchner: The Major Works, which appeared as a Norton Critical Edition in 2011, and the co-editor of Modernism and Opera (Johns Hopkins, 2016), which was shortlisted for an MSA Book Prize. His essays on theater, opera, film, and virtual reality have appeared widely, and his work as a playwright has appeared at the Eugene O’Neill Musical Theater Conference, Richard Foreman’s Ontological-Hysteric Theater, and other stages. He previously held professorships at Cornell University and Boston University as well as visiting positions at Columbia University and Johannes Gutenberg-Universität (Mainz).