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Jacob Gallagher-Ross

jacobgrJacob Gallagher-Ross
Assistant Professor

Contributing editor, Theater magazine: http://theater.dukejournals.org

Email: jacob.gallagher.ross@utoronto.ca
Office: UTM Deerfield Hall Rm. 1057
Office hours: by appointment.



DFA, 2013; MFA, 2009; Dramaturgy and Dramatic Criticism, Yale University School of Drama
Hon. BA, 2003; Drama, University of Toronto.

Research interests

Contemporary Theater and Performance; American Drama, Theater and Performance; Avant-Garde and Modernist Drama and Theater; Performance and Media; Digital Performance; Acting Theory; Dramaturgy; Theater History; Media Studies; Performance Criticism.

Awards and Honours

The American Theatre and Drama Society’s 2016 Vera Mowry Roberts Award for Research and Publication (recognizing the year’s best essay published in a journal or edited collection).

American Society for Theater Research Collaborative Research Award (2016)

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Fellowship

Mellon Summer School for Theater and Performance Research 2011 (Harvard University)

The John W. Gassner Memorial Prize for Criticism, 2007 and 2009 (Yale University)



Theaters of the Everyday: Aesthetic Democracy on the American Stage [Forthcoming in April 2018 from Northwestern University Press: http://www.nupress.northwestern.edu/content/theaters-everyday]

My book uncovers a submerged but vital current in American theatrical history, one that runs from the pioneering modernist experiments of the 1920s to today’s leading-edge contemporary performance: the theater of the everyday. Rejecting both the cosseting strictures of realism, and the shock tactics of the European avant-gardes, the American theater of the everyday sought a third path, balancing innovative form with democratic availability. Eschewing conventional definitions of dramatic action, these artists focused attention on smaller but no less profound dramas of perception, consciousness and day-to-day affective life. To them, the least important day—with its discarded words, fleeting sights, castoff gestures, and forgettable objects— is more than important enough. By deliberately choosing such mundane subject matter, they dedicate their theater to transforming spectators’ conceptions of what constitutes importance, both on and offstage.

Edited Volumes

Guest co-editor, “Spectatorship in an Age of Surveillance” [Special issue of Theater magazine on theater and surveillance, forthcoming in spring 2018 from Duke University Press]

Guest co-editor, “Digital Feelings,” Theater 46.2 Summer 2016 [Special issue of Theater magazine on theater, affect, and new media]

Guest co-editor, “Digital Dramaturgies,” Theater 42.2 Summer 2012 [Special issue of Theater magazine on theater and new media]

Articles and Essays

“Digital Feelings” Theater 46.2 Summer 2016 [Editors’ introduction to special issue of Theater on “Digital Feelings”]

“Mediating the Method,” Theatre Survey 56.3, September 2015, pp. 291-313. (Winner of the American Theatre and Drama Society’s 2016 Vera Mowry Roberts Award for Research and Publication recognizing the year’s best essay published in a journal or edited collection.)

“City of No Illusions” PAJ: Performing Arts Journal 110 May 2015, pp. 52-57.

“Islands in the Stream: Object Theater at the Whitney,” Theater 44.3 Fall 2014, pp. 74-85.

“Robert Blacker Looks at the Past and Future of American Dramaturgy” In The Routledge Companion To Dramaturgy ed. Magda Romanska, Routledge: 2014, pgs. 19-24.

“This Is Your Life: Nature Theater of Oklahoma’s The Life And Times, One Episode In” PAJ: Performing Arts Journal 102 (2012), pp 63-70.

“Future Shock” [Editors’ introduction] Theater 42.2, Summer 2012, pp. 1-2.

“Maxwell’s Ghosts: The New York City Players’ Ads.” PAJ: Performing Arts Journal 98 (2011), pp. 44–50.

“Image Eaters: Big Art Group Brings the Noise.” TDR: The Drama Review 54:4 (T208)
Winter 2010, pp 54-80.

“Babes In The Woods: Big Art Group’s SOS.” Theater 40.2 Summer 2010, pp 33–39.

“Obama Dramas.” Theater 39.3, Fall 2009, pp. 156-171.

“Post-Dramatic Stress Syndrome: Dood Paard’s medEia.” TDR: The Drama Review 53:1 (T201) Spring 2009, pp. 129-135.

“Dancing to the Cosmic Murmur: John Cage, Richard Foreman, and Nature Theater of Oklahoma’s No Dice.” TheatreForum 34, Winter 2009, pp. 92-98.

“Ghost Map: The East Village Fragments.” Theater 38.1, Winter 2008, pp. 142-147.

“Ibsen the Oracle.” Theater 37:3, Fall 2007, pp. 73-85.

“Ibsen Our Contemporary: Contemporary Directors on the Playwright’s Centenary.” [interviews] Theater 37.3, Fall 2007, 87-115.

Theatre Criticism

* Regular contributor to the Village Voice’s theater section from 2009-2016: https://www.villagevoice.com/author/jacobgallagher-ross/

Production Dramaturgy

Cymbeline, directed by Antoni Cimolino, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, 2012 [Dramaturg]

The Matchmaker, directed by Chris Abraham, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, 2012 [Co-Dramaturg]

Henry V, directed by Des McAnuff, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, 2012 [Assistant Dramaturg]

Twelfth Night, directed by Des McAnuff, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, 2011 [Dramaturg]

The Tempest, directed by Des McAnuff, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, 2010 [Assistant Dramaturg]

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