School of Humanities and Sciences
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Senior Lecturer in Drama
BioPatricia Ryan Madson is the author of IMPROV WISDOM: DON’T PREPARE, JUST
SHOW UP (Random House, 2005) and a professor Emerita from Stanford University where
she taught from 1977-2005. In the Drama Department she served as the head of the
undergraduate acting program and developed the improvisation program. In 1998 she was
the winner of the Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award for Outstanding Innovation in
Undergraduate Education at Stanford. She founded and coached the Stanford Improvisors
and taught beginning and advanced level courses in Improvisation for undergraduate as
well as adults in Stanford's Continuing Studies Program. In 1996 she founded the
Creativity Initiative at Stanford, an interdisciplinary alliance of faculty who share the
belief that creativity can be taught. Patricia has taught Design Improv for the School of
Engineering, and was a guest lecturer for the Stanford Technology Ventures Program and
for the Mayfield Fellows program.
She taught regularly for the Esalen Institute, and has given workshops for the California
Institute for Integral Studies, the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, the National
Association of Drama Therapists, the Western Psychological Association, Duke
University East Asian Studies Center, Wellness in the Workplace for BC University and
the Meaningful Life Therapy Association in Japan.
Her corporate clients have included: IDEO, Google, Gap Inc.'s Executive Leadership
Team, The Lucille and David Packard Foundation, the Banff Centre for Leadership, the
National Collegiate Inventors & Innovators Alliance (NCIIA), Hewlett Packard, Digital
Impact, The Woods Institute for the Environment, the International Society for
Performance Improvement (ISPI), the Santa Fe Leadership Center, the Association for
YMCA rofessionals, Sun Microsystems Japan Division, Extempo Systems,
Apple Computers, Adobe Systems, the Piedmont School District, and Price Waterhouse.
Batchelor of Arts in Philosophy, Westhampton College of the U. of Richmond,
1963 Masters of Arts in Theater, Wayne State University, 1965
Linked In: Patricia Ryan Madson
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Associate Professor of Theater and Performance Studies
BioJisha Menon teaches courses at the intersection of postcolonial theory and performance studies. She received her M.A. in English Literature from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and her Ph.D in Drama from Stanford University. Her research interests lie at the intersection of law and performance; race and the carceral state; affect theory, cities, and capitalism; gender and sexuality; cosmopolitanism and nationalism. She is the author of The Performance of Nationalism: India, Pakistan and the Memory of Partition (Cambridge UP, 2013), which considers the affective and performative dimensions of nation-making. The book recuperates the idea of "mimesis" to think about political history and the crisis of its aesthetic representation, while also paying attention to the mimetic relationality that undergirds the encounter between India and Pakistan. Her second book, Brutal Beauty: Aesthetics and Aspiration in the Indian City (Northwestern UP, 2021) considers the city and the self as aesthetic projects that are renovated in the wake of neoliberal economic reforms in India. Sketching out scenes of urban aspiration and its dark underbelly, the book delineates the creative and destructive potential of India’s lurch into contemporary capitalism. She is also co-editor of two volumes: Violence Performed: Local Roots and Global Routes of Conflict (with Patrick Anderson) (Palgrave-Macmillan Press, 2009) and Performing the Secular: Religion, Representation, and Politics (with Milija Gluhovic) (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017.) She has published essays on the Indian partition, diasporic feminist theatre, political violence and performance, transnational queer theory, and neoliberal urbanism. She previously served as Assistant Professor of English at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.
Ann O'Day Maples Professor in the Arts and Professor of English
BioPeggy Phelan is the Ann O’Day Maples Chair in the Arts Professor of Theater & Performance Studies and English. Publishing widely in both book and essay form, Phelan is the author of Unmarked: the politics of performance (Routledge, 1993); Mourning Sex: performing public memories (Routledge, 1997; honorable mention Callaway Prize for dramatic criticism 1997-1999); the survey essay for Art and Feminism, ed. by Helena Reckitt (Phaidon, 2001, winner of “The top 25 best books in art and architecture” award, amazon.com, 2001); the survey essay for Pipilotti Rist (Phaidon, 2001); and the catalog essay for Intus: Helena Almeida (Lisbon, 2004). She edited and contributed to Live Art in Los Angeles, (Routledge, 2012), and contributed catalog essays for Everything Loose Will Land: 1970s Art and Architecture in Los Angeles (Mak Center, 2013), Haunted: Contemporary Photography, Video, and Performance (Guggenheim Museum, 2010); WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution (Museum of Contemporary Art, 2007); and Andy Warhol: Giant Size (Phaidon, 2008), among others. Phelan is co-editor, with the late Lynda Hart, of Acting Out: Feminist Performances (University of Michigan Press, 1993; cited as “best critical anthology” of 1993 by American Book Review); and co-editor with Jill Lane of The Ends of Performance (New York University Press, 1997). She contributed an essay to Philip Ursprung’s Herzog and De Meurron: Natural History (CAA, 2005).
She has written more than sixty articles and essays in scholarly, artistic, and commercial magazines ranging from Artforum to Signs. She has written about Samuel Beckett for the PMLA and for The National Gallery of Ireland. She has also written about Robert Frost, Michael and Paris Jackson, Olran, Marina Abramovic, Dziga Vertov and a wide range of artists working in photography, dance, architecture, film, video, music, and poetry. She has edited special issues of the journals Narrative and Women and Performance. She has been a fellow of the Humanities Institute, University of California, Irvine; and a fellow of the Humanities Institute, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. She served on the Editorial Board of Art Journal, one of three quarterly publications of the College Art Association, and as Chair of the board. She has been President and Treasurer of Performance Studies International, the primary professional organization in her field. She has been a fellow of the Getty Research Institute and the Stanford Humanities Center. She won a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2004. She chaired the Department of Performance Studies at New York University and the Drama Department at Stanford University.
Professor (Teaching) of Theater and Performance Studies, Emeritus
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsEducation for Theatrical Lighting Design, nationally and internationally. Lighting design for Musicals.
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.