Doug Van Nort

BA, MA – Mathematics (SUNY Potsdam)
MFA – Electronic Art (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute)
PhD – Music Technology (McGill)

Doug Van Nort
Assistant Professor

Canada Research Chair in Digital Performance

Doug Van Nort joined York University’s School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design in 2015. He is cross-appointed to the Digital Media Program and Department of Theatre, and holds a five-year Canada Research Chair in Digital Performance. He is the founding director of AMPD’s DisPerSion Lab (DIStributed PERformance and Sensorial immersIION), a facility dedicated to the development of interdisciplinary research-creation projects that explore how we sense, process and interact with the performing arts in the post/digital age.

Professor Van Nort is an artist, researcher, composer and performer who work focuses on issues of performance and sensorial immersion in technologically-mediated environments. He has a particular interest in affective and visceral experiences of the sonic and haptic senses, the complex and embodied nature of listening, and the phenomenology of time consciousness.

In this context, Dr. Van Nort examines improvisation as a site of investigation and model of creative, social exchange. He creates works that integrate improvisation and collective performance with machine agents, interactive systems and experiences of telepresence. Informed by his background in mathematics, media arts, music composition and performance, his work draws upon disparate areas ranging from perception and cognition, systems theory, performance studies, cybernetics, machine learning, signal processing and various forms of ritual. Recent projects have spanned telematic music compositions, transforming an elevator into an electroacoustic sculpture, interactive textiles, developing machine improvisation systems, interactive music composition for a dance piece based on muscle sound, and performing sonified data streams from NASA’s Kepler mission.

As a performer specializing in truly improvised electroacoustic music, he has developed his own digital systems for performance that assume a turntable-like, sculptural approach to shaping sound using his hands and voice. He often performs solo as well as with a wide array of artists across musical styles and artistic media. Ongoing collaborations include the trio Triple Point with Pauline Oliveros and Jonas Braasch, a duo with underground noise legend If, Bwana, and participation in  Composers Inside Electronics.

Professor Van Nort regularly presents his work internationally. In recent years he has performed and recorded with dozens of artists including Francisco López, Stuart Dempster, Chris Chafe, Kathy Kennedy, Ben Miller, Alessandra Eramo, David Arner, Anne Bourne, Eric Leonardson, Judy Dunaway, Katherine Liberovskaya, Carver Audain, Paul Hession, Jefferson Pitcher, Jonathan Chen, and in Sarah Weaver-conducted ensembles alongside the likes  of Gerry Hemingway, Min Xiao-Fen, Ray Anderson, Miya Masaoka, Franz Hackl, Mark Helias and Dave Taylor, among many others. Live performance venues include [SAT] and Casa del Popolo in Montreal; on WNUR in Chicago; Casa da Musica in Porto, Betong in Oslo, Cafe OTO in London/UK, Skolska28 in Prague, Liebig12 and QuietCue in Berlin; The Red Room in Baltimore, Studio Soto in Boston, the Guelph Jazz Festival; Roulette, Harvestworks, the Flea Theatre, Socrates Sculpture Park, the New Museum, the Miller Theatre, Issue Project Room and the Stone in NYC; Town Hall (NYC) on an ‘intonarumori’ as part of the Performa futurist biennial; EMPAC in Troy, NY; the International Conference on Auditory Display (ICAD); New Interfaces for Musical Expression (NIME), as part of the Phil Niblock-curated ‘festival with no fancy name’ at Experimental Intermedia; at the NYC electroacoustic music festival; and many other festivals and events across the U.S. and Europe.

Recordings of Van Nort’s music can be found on Deep Listening, Pogus, Zeromoon, MIT Press and Attenuation Circuit among other experimental music labels. He produced the Triple Point 3-CD set released in 2014 by Pogus Productions that has drawn praise such as: “Electroacoustic improvisation has the potential to be a music of timbral complexity, of rapid shifts of sound colors within a multi-layered environment…Triple Point lives up to that potential, as would be expected from such a fine assembly of improvisers…. Each has a distinctive voice, but the group’s sound is a genuinely collective, emergent object in its own right.” (Daniel Barbiero, Avant Music News).

Dr. Van Nort’s scholarly writing has appeared in Organised Sound, Computer Music Journal, Leonardo Music Journal, Kybernetes and Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. He has also published in a variety of international conference proceedings, and was given the Best Paper Award at the 2010 International Computer Music Conference. He currently serves as an assistant editor for the Computer Music Journal (MIT Press).

As an educator, leveraging his experience of Deep Listening and his creative practice in electroacoustic composition/improvisation and sound-focused art/research, Professor Van Nort has led workshops, seminars and courses designed to enhance listening and creativity through a bodywork, breathing/sounding/listening exercises, and the use of analogue/digital electronics as a shared medium for such collective experiences. Prior to joining York University, he held a Banting Fellowship at Hexagram/Concordia University, collaborating with media artists, performers and scholars as an affiliate of the Topological Media Lab, and was a research associate and instructor in music and media at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he conducted research as a core member of an NSF-led project on telepresence and machine improvisation while teaching courses in electronic arts and architecture related to telematic music, improvisation, immersive environments, listening and sound.

His creative/research work has been supported and recognized by many leading institutions including the New York Foundation for the Arts,  New York State Council for the Arts, National Science Foundation (USA), International Computer Music Association as well as the  Canada Foundation for Innovation and the Government of Canada (CRC Program).

Gwenyth Dobie

Honours BA – University of Windsor, School of Dramatic Arts
Graduate Diploma – Centro Italiano Tecnica Alexander

Gwen Dobie
Associate Professor

Movement for Actors and Devised Theatre, The Alexander Technique, Acting Pedagogy

Professor Gwenyth Dobie, a certified Alexander Technique teacher and Yoga practitioner, teaches movement for actors and devised theatre in the Department of Theatre at York University. Gwenyth is the co-founder and Artistic Director of Out of the Box Productions, a performance fusion company that creates original works integrating spoken text, dance, music and interactive technology. Her producing and directing credits include Opera Erotique, which toured in BC and was remounted in Toronto; The Third Taboo, which toured western Canada; Prior Engagement at Belfry Studio Theatre in Victoria, BC; Sound in Silence premiered at the Belfry in Victoria and the Theatre Centre in Toronto; and Bugzzz ~ A Cautionary Tale at Toronto’s Theatre Direct. Rallentando is her latest creation, presented at Hub14 in Toronto.
www.gwendobie.ca
www.outoftheboxproductions.ca

Magdalena Kazubowski-Houston

BA Philosophy/Theatre (Manitoba)
MFA Interdisciplinary Studies (Simon Fraser)
PhD Anthropology/Theatre (Simon Fraser)

Magdalena Kazubowski-Houston
Associate Professor

Performance Studies

Professor Magdalena Kazubowski-Houston is an anthropologist, performance theorist and theatre director. Her research interests include experimental, imaginative and performance ethnography; ethnographic storytelling; political/activist performance; political anthropology; environmental anthropology; gender and ethnicity; international relations; violence and terrorism; migration; ageing; socialism/postsocialism; and the Roma people. She is a co-founder of York University’s Centre for Imaginative Ethnography (CIE), a project committed to advancing critical and politically conscious research.

Dr. Kazubowski-Houston’s research has explored performance as an ethnographic research methodology and representation. She worked on performance ethnography projects with Romani minorities in Poland, Nazi-Holocaust survivors in Canada and Poland, and low-income residents in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. Her research has also bridged bioethics, policy and gerontology. She collaborated on a study that investigated theatre as a method of public engagement in health policy development regarding the use of reproductive technologies. Her current research examines dramatic storytelling as an affective and reflexive ethnographic research methodology in the study of ageing and migration.

Her book Staging Strife (McGill-Queens University Press 2010) was awarded both the 2011 International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry Outstanding Qualitative Book Award and the Canadian Association for Theatre Research Ann Saddlemyer Book Prize. Staging Strife explores the challenges of collaboration and activism in performance ethnography by analyzing a politically charged theatre production undertaken with a group of Romani women in Poland.

Dr. Kazubowski-Houston’s other publications include journal articles in Social Science & MedicineText and Performance QuarterlyAnthropologicaCanadian Theatre Review and West Coast Line. She is currently writing her second monograph on imaginative ethnography, dramatic storytelling and fiction, which is under book contract with McGill-Queens University Press.

Professor Kazubowski-Houston trained as a theatre director with prominent Polish theatre/visual artist Józef Szajna and has worked as a professional theatre director, performer and playwright in Canada and Poland.

In recognition of her contribution to excellence in teaching in the Department of Theatre, she was the 2014 recipient of the Junior Faculty Teaching Award of the School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design.

Belarie Hyman Zatzman

MA, Drama Centre, University of Toronto / PhD, OISE/UT

Belarie Zatzman
Associate Professor

Theatre Studies

Belarie Zatzman’s research focuses on issues of history, identity, and memory in Drama and Arts Education. She specializes in exploring Holocaust Education through the Fine Arts. In addition, Zatzman teaches Theatre for Young Audiences, with a special focus on the Canadian context, and has written and edited study guides for professional theatre companies. She has been invited to conduct workshops and presentations across Canada and abroad, in such venues as Young People’s Theatre; Stratford Festival of Canada; Toronto District Board of Education; Sarah and Chaim Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre of Toronto; Facing History and Ourselves Canada; Council of Ontario Drama and Dance Educators; American Association of Theatre in Education; British National Drama; International Drama Education Research Institute; and the International Drama EducationAssociation. Zatzman’s publications include: “Difficult Knowledge in Theatre for Young Audiences: Remembering and Representing the Holocaust” in Theatre and Learning (2015); “The Poetry of Terezin” in Voices into Action (2014); “Drama Education and Memory” in Key Concepts in Theatre/Drama Education (2011); “Fifty-one Suitcases: Traces of Hana Brady and the Terezin Children” in Canadian Theatre Review (2008); and “The Monologue Project: Drama as a Form of Witnessing” in How Theatre Educates (2003).

Publications

Selected Publications:

“The Monologue Project: Drama as a Form of Witnessing” in Booth and Gallagher, eds. How Theatre Educates, University of Toronto Press (in press)

“Mapping Distance: Contemporary Responses to Holocaust Education through the Fine Arts” in Lerner, L., ed. Afterimage: Evocations of the Holocaust in Contemporary Canadian Arts and Literature, Concordia University, 2002

“Sign Language” in Creating a Theatre in Your Classroom and Community in Warren, B., ed. Toronto: Captus University Press, 3rd Edition, 2002

“Drama Activities and the Study of the Holocaust” in Teaching and Studying the Holocaust, Totten, S., & Feinberg, S., eds. Boston: Allyn and Bacon, 2001

“Holocaust Stories” in Booth, D. and Neelands, J., eds. Writing in Role. Hamilton: Caliburn Publishers, 1998.

Mark Wilson

Playhouse Acting School, MFA (York)

Mark Wilson
Associate Professor

Acting

Professor Wilson began his professional theatre career as an actor, and has extensive performance credits in theatres across Canada, including productions with the National Arts Centre, Canadian Stage Theatre, Workshop West (Edmonton), Theatre New Brunswick, the Globe Theatre (Regina), and the Vancouver Playhouse. Most recently, he appeared in little tongues (the blood projects at The Toronto Fringe). His directing credits include Robert Fothergill’s Disciples (Summerworks), Cabaret (Toronto Youth Theatre), Mister Invisible (Resource Centre for the Arts, St. John’s), Caribou Song (Red Sky Performance), Romeo & Juliet (Theatre By The Bay), The Threepenny Opera (George Brown Theatre School), Road (George Brown Theatre School/Equity Showcase Theatre), and The Snow Queen (Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus). He received a Canadian Comedy Award nomination for best direction for That Dorothy Parker at the Berkeley Street Theatre. He has also taught at the American Community Schools of Athens Summer Institute (Greece), George Brown Theatre School, Equity Showcase, and the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts, and has been an adjudicator with the Sears Ontario Drama Festival. Professor Wilson was Associate Dean, Academic, for the Faculty of Fine Arts, from 2009-2012. He is currently a juror for the Dora Mavor Moore Awards (General Theatre) in Toronto.

Ross Stuart

BFA (Alberta), MFA (Carnegie-Mellon), PhD (Toronto)

Ross Stuart
Associate Professor

Theatre Studies

Professor Stuart, founding Associate Editor of the Canadian Theatre Review, has published extensively on Canadian Theatre, most recently in “Establishing Our Boundaries:  English-Canadian Theatre Criticism”, and has special expertise in summer theatre in general and the Stratford Festival in particular.  He has served as Associate Dean, Fine Arts and Chair of Theatre.  An experienced adjudicator, workshop leader and director, his current research interest involves using improvisation to explore non-dramatic material and revitalize classic texts, and in developing material suitable for performance in schools.

Marlis Schweitzer

BA, BFA – University of Victoria
PhD – University of Toronto

Marlis Schweitzer
Associate Professor

Theatre Studies

Marlis Schweitzer is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre at York University where she teaches courses on performance and commodity culture, Broadway musical theatre, theatre research methodologies, and nineteenth-century popular entertainment. She is the author of When Broadway Was the Runway: Theater, Fashion, and American Culture (2009) and Transatlantic Broadway: The Infrastructural Politics of Global Performance (2015) and co-editor (with Laura Levin) of Performance Studies in Canada (McGill Queen’s, 2017) and (with Joanne Zerdy) of Performing Objects and Theatrical Things (2014). Her work has appeared in numerous journals including Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, TDR, Theatre Research International, Theatre Research in Canada, the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, and Canadian Theatre Review, as well as in the edited collections Performance and the City (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009) and Producing Fashion: Commerce, Culture, Consumers (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008). Marlis has held research fellowships from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Library of Congress (Kluge Centre), the Harry Ransom Center for the Humanities, and the Folger Shakespeare Library. Her current research focuses on nineteenth-century child actresses and the global performances of child consumers today. She is the President of the Canadian Association for Theatre Research.

Judith Rudakoff

BA (McGill), MA (Alberta), PhD (Toronto)

Judith Rudakoff
Professor

Theatre Studies

Developmental dramaturg Judith Rudakoff has worked with emerging and established playwrights and artists throughout Canada (including Yukon Territory, Nunavut and every province except Newfoundland…yet) and in Cuba, Denmark, South Africa, England and USA.  Books include  TRANS(per)FORMING Nina Arsenault (Bristol, Intellect Press 2012), Between the Lines: The Process of Dramaturgy (Playwrights Canada Press, 2002, co-editor Lynn M. Thomson), Fair Play: Conversations with Canadian Women Playwrights (Simon & Pierre, 1989, co-editor Rita Much) and Questionable Activities: Canadian Theatre Artists in Conversation with Canadian Theatre Students (Playwrights Canada Press, 2000). Her next book is Dramaturging Personal Narratives: Who am I and Where is Here? (Bristol, Intellect Press 2014). Her articles have appeared in The Drama Review, TheatreForum, Canadian Theatre Review. She is the creator of The Four Elements and Elemental Lomograms, transcultural methodologies for initiating live performance and visual art. Teaching awards include the inaugural Dean’s Prize for Teaching Excellence (Faculty of Fine Arts) and the University Wide Teaching Prize at York University where she is a Full Professor, and three consecutive NOW Magazine “Best of Toronto” awards. She was the first Canadian honoured with the Elliott Hayes Prize in Dramaturgy for her work on South Asian choreographer Lata Pada’s multidisciplinary work, Revealed by Fire. Rudakoff is a member of Playwrights Guild of Canada, and Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas.  A recent project is Common Plants:  Cross Pollinations in Hybrid Reality (www.yorku.ca/gardens), a multidisciplinary cross cultural project funded by SSHRC involving artists and students from diverse cultural and geographical backgrounds including Iqaluit, Nunavut and Cape Town, South Africa.  Recent playwriting projects are Beautiful Little Lies, a stage play set in Cuba which received staged readings in Trinidad, Guyana and New York; and The River (co-written with David Skelton and Joseph Tisiga) which premiered at Nakai Theatre in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory in April 2011.

Don Rubin

BA (Hofstra), MA (Bridgeport)

Don Rubin
Professor

Theatre Studies – aesthetics, criticism, Canadian theatre, modern drama

Professor Rubin began his career at the famous High School of Performing Arts in New York City where he trained as an actor. He later moved to Canada where he became a founding member of the Department of Theatre and of York’s Faculty of Fine Arts. Chair of the Department for three years, and later Founding Director of the Graduate Program in Theatre Studies (MA and PhD), his areas of specialization today include Canadian Theatre, African Theatre, Criticism, Theatre Theory, and Modern Drama.

A founder and editor of the quarterly journal Canadian Theatre Review for eight years and a working daily critic in print, radio and television for the Toronto Star and CBC Radio among others, he was the editor of the standard scholarly volume Canadian Theatre History: Selected Readings (Playwrights Canada Press) and Routledge’s six-volume World Encyclopedia of Contemporary Theatre. Prof. Rubin is a former president of the Canadian Centre of Unesco’s International Theatre Institute, a founder and current President of the Canadian Theatre Critics Association, a member of the International Executive Board of the International Association of Theatre Critics’ and a member of the editorial board for the IATC web journal, Critical Stages (criticalstages.org). He also serves on the Executive Board of the Shakespeare Fellowship.

He has taught and lectured at major universities and theatre schools in South Africa, Nigeria, Russia, China, Japan, France, England, Sweden, Mexico and at numerous universities across North America. At York, he teaches Canadian theatre history at both the undergraduate and graduate levels as well as courses in African theatre and drama, and applied criticism. In 2011-12, he taught a fourth year course in Shakespeare: The Authorship Question, a course which  interrogated the mystery surrounding who really wrote the plays ascribed to “Shakespeare.”

He is married to York Creative Writing Professor Patricia Keeney, a poet, novelist and theatre critic. A fuller biographical sketch can be found on their joint website:  wapitiwords.ca

Teresa Przybylski

Master Engineer/Architect (Technical University of Krakow), MFA in Scenography (Fine Arts Academy, Krakow)

Teresa Przybylski
Professor

Production

Professor Przybylski is an architect and theatre designer with an international reputation for her work in theatre, opera, dance and film.  Her credits include designs for Stratford Festival, Shaw Festival, Canadian Opera Company, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Pacific Opera, Young People’s Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Factory Theatre, Canadian Stage, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Blyth Festival, Theatre Smith-Gilmour, Theatre Columbus and others. She is a recipient of five Dora Mavor Moore Awards for theatre design and two Gemini Awards for film production design.  She is a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts and Associated Designers of Canada.