I am a publicly engaged artist/scholar completing my Ph.D. in the Department of Performing and Media Arts at Cornell University. My dissertation, Acts of Witness: Research-Based Performance and the Cultivation of Civic Imagination in the Post-Truth Era, argues that research-based performances and the methods used to create them model collective approaches to meaning-making that can be used to contest and expand public understandings of how knowledge is made and who has the authority to make it. I contend that these methods have taken on renewed significance in an era of political polarization that threatens our capacity to engage in the types of civic imagination that allow us to envision and work toward more just and equitable futures.
As a freelance director, dramaturg, and producer, my work focuses on developing new works of queer and feminist performance. Current projects include assistant directing and dramaturging Leigh Fondakowski’s newest play, Casa Cushman, which centers on the nineteenth-century lesbian actress, Charlotte Cushman; dramaturging Joshua Groffman and Sarah Heady's opera, Halcyon, which investigates what happens when a place that matters to us comes to ruin through the story of life and death of a women's college in Millbrook, NY, and co-creating The Loneliness Project, a multidisciplinary response to intergenerational loneliness in Chicago's LGBTQIA+ communities, with Kelli Simpkins, Al Evangelista, and Reed Motz.
My research has been supported by multiple grants and fellowships, including a Provost Diversity Fellowship, an Engaged Cornell Graduate Student Grant, a New York Public Humanities Fellowship, and a Fulbright Fellowship. My scholarly writing has appeared in Theatre Topics and will be featured in the forthcoming collection The Scholar as Human: Enacting the Liberal Arts in Public.
I hold an MA in Theater Arts from Cornell University, an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Cincinnati, and a BA in English Literature from the University of Cincinnati.