2009 Honorary Doctorate
Richard Schechner is University Professor/Professor of Performance Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. His BA is from Cornell University, MA from the University of Iowa, and PhD from Tulane University. In March 2005 the Richard Schechner Centre for Performance Studies was inaugurated as part of the Shanghai Theatre Academy, where Schechner is an Honorary Professor. He is editor of TDR: A Journal of Performance Studies and artistic director of East Coast Artists. Schechner is the author of a number of books, including Public Domain, Environmental Theatre, The End of Humanism, Performance Theory, Between Theatre and Anthropology, The Future of Ritual, Performance Studies — An Introduction, and Over, Under, and Around. He is general editor of the Worlds of Performance series published by Routledge and serves as advisor to several journals including Asian Theatre Journal and the Journal of Ritual Studies.
In 1967 Schechner founded The Performance Group in New York, for whom he directed some notable productions including Dionysus in 69, Mother Courage and Her Children, Seneca’s Oedipus, The Tooth of Crime, and The Balcony. Currently as artistic director of East Coast Artists, Schechner has directed his own version of the Faust legend, Faust/gastronome, Three Sisters, Hamlet, and Yokastas (co-authored with Saviana Stanescu). His work overseas includes The Cherry Orchard (New Delhi), August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Grahamstown Festival, South Africa), Sun Huizhu’s Tomorrow He’ll Be Out of the Mountains (Shanghai’ Peoples’ Art Theatre), and The Oresteia (his own adaptation, for the Contemporary Legend Theatre of Taiwan). In 2007 in Shanghai, he directed Hamlet: That Is the Question – an experimental version of Shakespeare’s play which will tour to Poland in 2009.
Schechner’s many fellowships, awards, and visiting professorships include two Lifetime Achievement Awards, one from Performance Studies International and the other from the American Theatre in Higher Education, an American Institute of Indian Studies Senior Research Fellowship, a Humanities and Old Dominion Fellow at Princeton University, a Montgomery Fellow at Dartmouth College, a Fellow of the Centre for Cultural Sociology at Yale University, and an Andrew H. White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University. He is the Curator of the 2009 Year of Grotowski in New York.