I am a writer, dramaturg and theatre, performance and media scholar. I study and research issues on the intersection of theatre, media, and technology, including multiplatform dramaturgy, human/AI interaction in performance, the ethics and representation of human enhancements, and posthuman theatre and performance.
A graduate of Stanford's honor program in Modern Thought and Literature, and Cornell's doctoral program in Theatre, Film and Dance, I am an Associate Professor of Theatre Studies and Dramaturgy at Emerson College in Boston, MA, a Research Associate at the Center for European Studies at Harvard University, and the Executive Director and Editor-in-Chief of TheTheatreTimes.com, the largest global digital theatre portal, for which I won the 2018 Elliott Hayes Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dramaturgy. In this capacity, I lead a team of over 140 Regional Managing Editors around the world, covering theatre in over 80 countries and regions.
My past books and publications cover the areas of post-traumatic theatre, a theory of comedy, and dramaturgy. I am the author or editor of four critically acclaimed theatre books, including The Post-traumatic Theatre of Grotowski and Kantor, Reader in Comedy: An Anthology of Theory and Criticism (co-edited with Alan Ackerman); and The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy, a leading handbook of dramaturgy. My fifth book, TheaterMachine: Tadeusz Kantor in Context (co-edited with Kathleen Cioffi, is forthcoming from NUP. I am also the sole editor of a ten-volume series Focus on Dramaturgy to be released within the next two years from Routledge.
My book chapters and articles have been published in journals and anthologies: Postdramatic Theatre and Form , Diversity, Inclusion, and Representation in Contemporary Dramaturgy: Case Studies from the Field (forthcoming), International Women Stage Directors, Re-writing Chekhov: The Text and Its Mutations, The Sacred Tropes, The Cultural Politics of Heiner Muller, and Ghosts, Stories, Histories, Theatre Survey, TDR: The Drama Review, Performance Research: A Journal of the Performing Arts, Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics, Mercurian: A Theatrical Translation Review, Gender Forum, Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and Toronto Slavic Quarterly.
My past research on theatre and performance has been recognized with two international awards from the American Society for Theatre Research and from the Polish Studies Association. My current projects include two books: The Bionic Body: Technology, Disability, and Posthumanism, and Transmedia Dramaturgy: Multiplatform and Networked Performance.
I have extensive editorial experience, serving in the past on the editorial boards of Theater magazine, the Yale Journal of Law and Humanities, Diacritics: A Review Journal of Criticism and Theory (I was the first graduate student from outside Romance Studies that the Board has chosen to invite) , Journal of Law and Theatre, and Polish Theatre Perspectives. I was also a founding editor of Palimpsest: Yale Literary and Arts Magazine, which was featured in Print Magazine’s Regional Design Annual and chosen from among over twenty thousand entries.
I taught 30 different courses on theatre, performance and transmedia, including at Harvard University, Yale School of Drama, Cornell University, and Emerson College. I worked on over 30 theatre and opera productions as either dramaturg, playwright or director, and served as the resident dramaturg for the Boston Lyric Opera. I am a recipient of Apothetae and Lark Theatre Playwriting Fellowship from Time Foundation, and my first play Opheliamachine, had its premiere in Los Angeles to a slew of positive reviews.
Romanska and Ackerman’s Reader in Comedy is a very ambitious project, which draws on a range of sources from antiquity to the twenty-first century to compile an authoritative volume of works about comedy. The editors have created [anthology] with remarkable breadth.
An impressive cast of notable contributors offers their definitions of comedy and its historical contexts, themes, narrative structures, plots, character types and tropes. As a valuable precis of historical writings on comedy, Reader in Comedy is a full, rich and highly informative anthology that can be dipped into time and time again.
The editors of Reader in Comedy: An Anthology of Theory and Criticism have created a temporally expansive analysis of western comic theory. It is a substantial anthology that interweaves performance studies, drama, literature, and critical theory. Romanska and Ackerman have curated a collection that charts continuity in comic theory without diluting historical specificities. Each introduction to the chapters succinctly contextualizes the comic theory of its time and also links the annotated texts to previous chapters.
It is not overstating the case to say that this volume will for sure be the book of reference for students, scholars, and dramaturgs in the fields named above if it comes to questions of dramaturgy. The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy goes far beyond a conventional handbook on dramaturgy as a way to structure a text to be staged.
The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy honours the diverse and varied nature of dramaturgical practice. The range of this book is, as stated, quite extensive: its depth is impressive. Romanska’s collection is a statement as to where contemporary dramaturgical practice is at present, whilst also envisioning its future(s). It is a singular, vital, and necessary contribution to the dramaturgical practice is at present, whilst also envisioning its future(s).
The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy is an indispensable resource for anyone serious about dramaturgy.
With eighty-five essays, The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy offers comprehensive coverage of dramaturgical theory and practice.
Richly documented chapters interweave primary sources, critical commentary, and contemporary theory (for example, Adorno, Agamben, Bettelheim, Améry) on each topic. Through its argumentation and design, The Post-traumatic Theatre of Grotowski and Kantor demonstrates a sophisticated dramaturgical strategy for re-historicizing and recontextualizing theatre and performance events
A timely gift to the world of contemporary theatre. The Routledge Companion is a testament to this much-misunderstood practice, and will greatly assist the recognition and consolidation of dramaturgy as an art.This impressively varied volume includes, in its 8 parts, 85 essays that shine different forms of light on dramaturgical theory and practice. Romanska’s intro is magisterial, managing to address, with astuteness and depth, what dramaturgy was, is, and can be.
Non-Polish-speaking scholars of Grotowski and Kantor will be grateful for Romanska’s work. She opens up areas of these two productions which have been unavailable.
[With The Post-traumatic Theatre of Grotowski and Kantor] the task, which the author sets out and performs, starting from such a clearly defined research perspective, is both remarkable and impressive in its momentum and size.
TheTheatreTimes.com is a global theatre portal. Since its launch in November 2016, TheTheatreTimes.com has published over 2,000 articles covering theatre in 80 countries. With 20 thematic sections, more than 140 Regional Managing Editors, over 50 media partners around the world, and 58,000+ followers on social media, we have grown to be the most far-reaching and comprehensive global theatre portal today.Visit TheTheatreTimes.com
A Site-Specific Conference at Cornell University and The Cherry Artspace, May 11–12, 2018
Guest lecture: “Performances of Dignity: In Law, Medicine, and Theatre” - September 2018
Discussant: Justice, Guilt, and the Law Panel The Research Network for Postsocialist Cultural Studies - March 2018
Plenary session: Bodies and Theories of Performance - November 2017
The Apothetae and Lark Playwriting Fellowship for writers with a disability, supported by the Time Warner Foundation September 2017
Guest panelist: Evolving Perspectives and Practice Symposium - April 2017
Negotiating the Reception of Marked Bodies in Performance - April 2016
Guest panelist: Jesters and Fools: A History of Wit and Whimsy - April 2016
Guest panelist: The Rosenbergs – Studio Series panel on a new opera - April 2016
Northeastern MFA Dramaturgy Retreat - January 2015
Podcast on The Post-Traumatic Theatre of Grotowski and Kantor - June 2015
“What Gets Performed: The Life of the Dramatic Repertoire." Invited panelist: Dramaturgy Round-Table - June 2015
LMDA held its 2014 annual international conference was located in Boston’s historic theatre district and hosted by Emerson College and Suffolk University - June 2014
Invited Guest Lecture: “Of Drammatology: The Post-traumatic Sign in the Works of Tadeusz Kantor” - 2013
Invited Guest Lecture: “Of Drammatology: Form and Content in Performative Exchange” - 2013
"This was an incredibly powerful representation of the human experience." – The Boston Musical Intelligencer
"The Rosenbergs is small in scope but large in ambition; it is an accomplished and moving work that demands attention." – The Arts Fuse
Music: Joachim Holbek
Libretto: Rhea Leman
Directed by Dmitry Troyanovsky
Musical Direction by Cristi Catt
Dramaturg: Magda Romanska