As a teacher of theater and performance studies, I work to make the connections between history, theory, and practice explicit so students can come to recognize themselves as civic actors whose knowledge and labor can inform and shape the publics to which they belong. In practice-based courses, this focus on praxis translates into my students using history and theory to situate the methods they are learning within broader artistic traditions, so they can make critical decisions about the methodologies and forms they employ. In historically and theoretically focused courses, students engage with live performance as audience members and as artists so they can consider the ways in which artistic practice informs and complicates their understanding of the content.
My interdisciplinary training in theater and performance studies and feminist, gender, and sexuality studies has prepared me to teach a wide range of courses, including theater history, directing, devising, and feminist and queer theory. In each of these content areas, I treat the classroom as a collaborative learning space where formal training enables students to access concepts, skills, and narratives that will help them to make sense of not only their experiences but also ways of thinking distinct from their own. Together, my students and I work to become better artists, scholars, and civic actors who use our knowledge for the public good.
My successes as an instructor have been recognized by both the University of Cincinnati and Cornell University through teaching awards and fellowships. In addition to this formal feedback, my successes are most clearly reflected in the number of students who choose to continue working with me. Nearly half of my students at Cornell, the vast majority of whom began my courses as non-majors, have sought opportunities to collaborate with me through other courses and artistic projects.