Association for Theatre in Higher Education
October 2015

From the President, Patricia Ybarra

When sitting down to write this speech I started where I often do with my students when thinking through a concept that we think is familiar, but is not. In this case, the word whose definition is in question is “adjunct.” According to the Webster’s dictionary, adjunct “is something joined or added to another thing, but not essentially a part of it,” or “a word or word group that qualified or completes the meaning of another word and or words and is not itself the main structural element in its sentence,” or it is an adverb or adverbial phrase (as heartily in “They ate heartily” or at noon in “We left at noon” attached to the verb of a clause especially to express a relation of time, place, frequency, degree or manner.” The third definition comes final to issues in our profession, which defines the term as “ an associate or assistant of another or an adjunct faculty member at a college or university ” We are then directed to the second definition if we are interested in adjunct professor-- that definition is: “added or joined in order to be used with something; added to a teaching staff for only a short time or in a lower position than other staff or “added or joined as an accompanying object or circumstance.” The second definition elaborates on this, suggesting that an adjunct is “ attached in a subordinate or temporary capacity to a staff .” I will also offer some synonyms as food for thought: “helper, adjutant, aid, aide, apprentice, assistant, coadjutor, deputy, helpmate, helpmeet, lieutenant, mate, sidekick”

Read the full presidential address here.

Stars of the Stage and Page: Call for ATHE 2016 Award Nominations

Who do you consider a “star” artist, teacher, or scholar? Whose work do you seek out and admire, whether on stage or in scholarship? Whose achievements most inspire you to “reach for the stars” and strive for excellence in your own work? Here is your opportunity to honor that individual’s accomplishments.

ATHE gives four prestigious awards recognizing the outstanding lifetime or career achievements of individuals whose excellent work has made a sustained and meaningful impact on the fields of educational and professional theatre:

Outstanding Teacher of Theatre in Higher Education
Career Achievement in Higher Education
Ellen Stewart Award for Career Achievement in Professional Theatre
Leadership in Community-Based Theatre and Civic Engagement

To nominate a “superstar” for one of these awards, write an impassioned letter of nomination and solicit up to ten letters of support. More information on criteria and the details of each award is located on the ATHE website.

ATHE awards excellence in scholarly projects published in the last year:

Outstanding Book
Outstanding Article in a Scholarly Journal

ATHE recognizes excellence in editing of an individual project, or in sustained excellence for a lifetime body of work. These categories are awarded every other year, with publications from the previous two years eligible. In 2016 we will be honoring excellence in an individual project:

Excellence in Editing

ATHE honors excellence in Playwriting via two awards:

Jane Chambers
ATHE Excellence in Playwrighting

In 2016, ATHE and ASTR will begin to jointly honor excellence in digital scholarship with the inaugural presentation of the award:

Excellence in Digital Scholarship

More information on nomination processes for all awards can be found on the ATHE website.


Race and Social Justice to be Theme of 36th Annual North American Drama Therapy Association Conference in White Plains, New York

Addressing intersections of culture and identity often creates a polarizing tension of attraction and aversion. When we are able to challenge these polarities through authentic encounter with one another, we may be able to co-create a new space for understanding and identification to occur. The drama therapy community is well-positioned to thrive in a space of magnetic push and pull; our work with ambivalence permits us the understanding that divergent forces can be the catalyst for change. This conference is an invitation not only to develop our own awareness, but also to expand our knowledge and practice, and examine the ways in which drama therapy is uniquely poised to enact social change.

The action methods embedded in drama and improvisation have much to offer the field of social justice. What are the mechanisms through which we express and work through the strong affects of shame, guilt, anger, and fear that may emerge? As artists, how can we create a space for encounter, reflection, and performance of change? In what ways could we begin to adjust our ethics, approaches, and expectations to transform our roles to that of allies or advocates? How do the arts allow for richer expression of harm and greater possibilities for hope?

Join NADTA for the 2015 Annual Conference in White Plains, NY.
Magnetic Forces: Working with Attraction and Aversion to Difference and Social Justice
October 15 - 18, 2015

Crowne Plaza White Plains
66 Hale Avenue
White Plains, NY 10601

For more information and to register: www.dramatherapyconference.org


Playwrights and Creative Teams

The Playwrights and Creative Teams Focus Group (PACT) proposes for the membership of ATHE a pre conference centered on the process of the playwright. While our 2015 pre conference stressed the dramaturgy of the city of Montréal, this iteration focuses inward by providing a workshop-style writing intensive that delineates the work of the playwright from inception to rehearsal. Better yet, it will be conducted by one of the nation’s leading voices in new plays, Tanya Palmer, director of new play development at Goodman Theatre (see bio below).

The work of a playwright usually occurs in at least two stages: 1) the individual work of a writer from inception to the creation of a playable draft, and 2) the work of a writer in the rehearsal room with his or her creative team including a director, actors, dramaturg, and designers (among others). This workshop, highlighting both playwriting events, will be divided into two parts, outlined below, with a much shorter concluding section.

View additional details here.


New VASTA Board Members

VASTA welcomes four new board members this year: wonderful practitioners in the world of voice and speech for performance and oral expression in all its forms:

Erika Bailey
John Graham
Michelle Lopez-Rios
Ursula Meyer

VASTA membership has many benefits, one of which includes new complimentary online access to a second journal provided by Routledge/Taylor & Francis: Theatre, Dance and Performance Training. This is a terrific addition to VASTA's Voice and Speech Review journal, which features timely and in-depth articles from the field. Check out VASTA’s website to inspire connections to the voice and speech world in your theatre practice @ vasta.org.


Information on Joining the New PSFG Listserv

PSFG now has a listserve for our members.

Email the listserv at PSFG+join@athe.org. You will then receive an email from us with instructions on how you could join.


Call for Applications for Theatre Journal Book Review Editor

Theatre Journal is accepting applications for the position of Book Review Editor. Responsibilities include: commissioning reviews of books relating to theatre and performance; editing reviews; and establishing and maintaining relationships with book publishers. The Book Review Editor is also an ex officio member of the ATHE Research and Publications Committee.

The Book Review Editor will serve a three-year term beginning in Jan. 2017 and ending in Dec. 2019. Theatre Journal is a quarterly, peer-reviewed journal featuring social and historical studies and theoretical inquiries that analyze dramatic texts and production.

Please email a letter of interest outlining qualifications, a current CV, and two letters of recommendation to Soyica Colbert, ATHE Vice President for Research and Publications, at sdc71@georgetown.edu. Complete applications are due by Dec. 1, 2015.


Call for Applications for Theatre Journal Performance Review Editor

Theatre Journal is accepting applications for the position of Performance Review Editor. Responsibilities include: commissioning reviews of theatre and dance performances in the United States and internationally, fielding queries about conducting reviews, and editing reviews. The Performance Review Editor is also an ex officio member of the ATHE Research and Publications Committee.

The Performance Review Editor will serve a three-year term beginning in Jan. 2017 and ending in Dec. 2019. Theatre Journal is a quarterly, peer-reviewed journal featuring social and historical studies and theoretical inquiries that analyze dramatic texts and production.

Please email a letter of interest outlining qualifications, a current CV, and two letters of recommendation to Soyica Colbert, ATHE Vice President for Research and Publications, at sdc71@georgetown.edu. Complete applications are due by Dec. 1, 2015.