Joseph Roach returns to discuss Shakespearean romance

Joseph Roach, Ph.D., former chair of the Performing Arts Department (PAD) in Arts & Sciences, will present the 2008 Helen Clanton Morrin Lecture at 4 p.m. Monday, Jan. 28, in the Ann W. Olin Women’s Building Formal Lounge.

The lecture, titled “Shakespearean Romance & Epistolary Performances in the Age of Garrick,” is free and open to the public.

Roach, the Charles C. and Dorathea S. Dilley Professor of Theater and English at Yale University, studies the history and theory of theater and dramatic literature and has been a major force in developing the field of performance studies. His most recent book, “It” (2007), traces the evolution of charismatic celebrity across the continents and the centuries, while his previous volume, “Cities of the Dead: Circum-Atlantic Performance” (1996), explored Atlantic rim performance cultures.

Roach joined the WUSTL faculty in 1982 and served as chair of the PAD until 1987. He also led the interdisciplinary doctorate program in theatre at Northwestern University and the Department of Performance Studies at New York University.

In 2006, Roach won the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Other honors include NYU’s Calloway Prize and the Modern Language Association’s James Russell Lowell Prize, both for “Cities of the Dead,” as well as the Barnard Hewitt Award in Theatre History for “The Player’s Passion: Studies in the Science of Acting” (1993).

Roach is co-editor with Janelle Reinelt of “Critical Theory and Performance” (1992). His articles and essays have appeared in Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, The Drama Review, Theatre History Studies, Discourse, Theater and Text, and Performance Quarterly, among others.

The Helen Clanton Morrin Lecture was established in 1998 in memory of 1994 alumna Helen Clanton Morrin by her children — Peter Morrin, Kevin Morrin and Sheila Humphreys — as well as by friends and colleagues. Previous speakers include the renowned Shakespearean actors Jane Lapotaire and Gareth Armstrong as well as two-time Tony Award-winner Zoe Caldwell.

For more information, call the PAD at 935-5858.