Shakespeare Pedagogy Conference Panel Chairs



SEPTEMBER 26 and 27, 2014


Dr. James Bell (panel chair) is associate professor of theatre in the School of Communications at Grand Valley State University. Heis a theatre scholar, playwright, and dramaturg and is the Managing Director for the Grand Valley Shakespeare Festival. He holds a B.A. in theatre arts from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in theatre history, theory, and criticism from Florida State University. Before coming to Grand Valley, he taught and was production dramaturg for numerous productions at Jacksonville University, Florida Community College at Jacksonville, and at Florida State University where he was also involved in university theatre administration. He worked with Jason Yancey from the Modern Languages Department to write the first English translation/adaptation of Tirso de Molina's Spanish Golden Age classic Antona García. The subsequent production premiered at the Siglo de Oro Spanish Drama Festival at Chamizal National Memorial in El Paso, Texas and was subsequently performed at Grand Valley. His play Autumn in the Valley, which was first developed at the Utah Shakespearean Festival, premiered at Grand Valley in 2006. He was also the 1994 Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival Student Playwriting Award winner for his play Prisoner, which was subsequently performed at the Kennedy Center and has been published by Samuel French. His other plays have been featured at the Mount Sequoyah New Play Retreat as well as the Egyptian Theatre in Park City, Utah.

Karen Libman is a stage director, theatre professor, writer and storyteller.  She is the director of this year's Grand Valley Shakespeare Festival's Richard III, and has directed frequently for the Festival in the past (A Midsummer Night's Dream; Love's Labour's Lost; Macbeth; A Comedy of Errors, and The Merchant of Venice), as well as directing mainstage university productions at Grand Valley State University. Libman helped to conceive the GV Shakespeare Festival's Bard to Go (BTG) touring program, and she has taken students in BTG on international tours in Jamaica, The Bahamas, and China; and she also traveled with students to El Paso, Texas, where they performed the world premiere of the English version of Antona Garcia at the Siglo de Oro Spanish Golden Age Festival  (March 2012).   Libman received the 2008 American Alliance for Theatre in Education Lin Wright Special Recognition Award for her work with Bard to Go, and her directing work has received a meritorious achievement awards from the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival.   In 2010, she was named Michigan Distinguished Professor of the Year by The Presidents Council of State Universities of Michigan.  Most recently, she directed the premiere translation of Diane Rayor's Medea for Heritage Theatre Group, which will be published in 2013 by Cambridge University Press.

Dr. Allison Manville Metz - Assistant Professor of Theatre Education and Theatre Research. "Dr. Alli" holds a Ph.D. in Theatre Research, and a B.A. in Theatre and English, from the University of Wisconsin - Madison, as well as an M.F.A. in Drama and Theatre for Youth from the University of Texas - Austin.  She has worked as an artist-educator and arts administrator for a variety of organizations, including after school programs, an avant-garde theatre company, a bilingual theatre company, and children's museums across the United States. Dr. Metz has led teacher training workshops in multiple states, as well as St. Petersburg, Russia, where she shares her passion for using theatre and drama as an educational tool in classroom settings.  In addition to teaching classes at GVSU, Professor Metz works in the GVSU Women's Center as the Director of "ReACT! ," a peer theatre education troupe which produces interactive theatre programming to help prevent incidents of violence against women on campus.

Dr. Jo Miller - Associate Professor, Department of English in Language and Literature at Grand Valley State University.  B.A., University of Oregon; M.A., Colorado State University; Ph.D., University of Utah.

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