MFA, Yale School of Drama;
BA, Magna cum laude, Williams College
Assistant Professor of TheaterProfile:
To create change, you first have to imagine the possibility. Theater demands that both the practitioner and the audience engage — in the moment and in the imagination. And whether I’m directing Shakespeare, Chekhov, or working with New School students at the I HAVE A DREAM After School Drama Program, I find the making of theater constantly asks that we grapple with essential questions. Why we are here, what matters, and how can we collaboratively transform reality? Now more than ever, it’s important to challenge ourselves — as actors challenge themselves in their work—to listen, respond, engage in dialogue, and transform ourselves and others.
Working in an array of disciplines as a writer, director, actor, and collaborator, my teaching and professional work has focused on five main areas: theater as a medium for social change; the “everyday practice of the actor”; engaging the classics (particularly Shakespeare); transformative arts education, and theater and health advocacy. I recently wrote and directed From the Fire, which won three Edinburgh Fringe Festival’s UK/Music Theater Awards: Best Music, Best Production and Best New Musical. The Scotsman named the piece an Edinburgh “cultural highlight of 2011” and a WNET Public Television documentary of From the Fire was nominated for a NY Emmy award.
For over a decade, I have created and directed interactive performance pieces for Lincoln Center’s ‘Meet the Artist’ series, which have gone on to tour New York City schools and arts centers throughout the U.S. I have recently directed performances at WNYC New York Public Radio’s Jerome L. Green Performance Space, the Morgan Library, the Roxy Regional Theater, 29th Street Rep, Henry Street’s Abrons Arts Center and at Shakespeare Festivals in Brooklyn and Westchester. An Artist/ Facilitator for the ‘Interconnectivity Project’ in 2011/12, sponsored by MAPP International, a global organization dedicated to bringing together the arts, humanities and public dialogue, I also directed for MAPP’s WeDaPeople’s Cabaret at Harlem Stage. In my community engagement work, I have coordinated the ‘I Have a Dream’ Afterschool Drama Program since its inception in 2006 and helped create the IHAD Youth Media Program in 2011. Previously, I was on the faculty at NYU’s Tisch School for the Arts, NYU’s Playwrights Horizons Studio and NYU’s Kanbar School for Film & Television.
Cecilia Rubino discusses teaching and learning at Lang in a project made possible with a grant from Bringing Theory to Practice.
Acting Fundamentals Recent Publications:
Religion & Theater
Edinburgh, Scotland: The International Theater Festival: Summer Study Abroad
The Senior Seminar in Theater: (Seminars have focused on an individual playwright including: Anton Chekhov, Oscar Wilde, Tennessee Williams and Maria Irene Fornes.)
The Artist and Social Change: Chaplin’s Modern Times
Theater in Education Seminar
Theater and Health Advocacy
I Have A Dream Drama-Literacy Internships
The Genre of Realism
Advanced Scene Study
- Twentieth-Century American Dramatists: Volume 5. Edited by Garrett Eisler. Chapter on Anna Deavere Smith. Bruccoli Clark Layman Publishers. 2008
- The Odets Project. Spring ‘06. Wrote and directed a documentary theater piece about the playwright Clifford Odets for the New School’s Spring Arts Festival.
- Directed The Den of Thieves by Stephen Guirgis at 29th Street Repertory Theater. Fall, ‘06.
- Co-director ‘Industry Night’ at NYU’s Tisch School for the Arts. Fall ‘04-06.
- Directed “America is in the Room’ a documentary theater piece which grew out Sekou Sundiata’s America Project: The 51st Dream State course. Staged reading at Bucknell College, February ‘08. Also collaborated on Symposium on ‘Art, Activism and The Death Penalty’ with Sekou Sundiata at The New School in the Spring of ‘05.
Eugene Lang College, The New School for Liberal ArtsOffice Hours:
65 West 11th Street, room 052
New York, NY 10011
M-TR 3:30-4:30 & by appointmentPhone Number/Extension:
212-229-5100 x3352Email:RubinoC@newschool.eduResearch Interests:
Interdisciplinary approaches to engaged theater Professional Affiliations:
The Actor’s daily practice
Shakespeare and the reinvestigation of classical drama
Theater as a medium for social change, particularly documentary theater
Theater in Education and the connections between drama and literacy
The history of acting practice and performance
Lincoln Center: ‘Meet the Artist’ Performances:
The Association for Theater in Higher Education
The Remember the Triangle Shirtwaist Coalition
Board Member of Piper Theater, Brooklyn
Awards and Honors:
WNYC, New York Public Radio’s Jerome L Green Performance Space, July 2012. In collaboration with producer, Sarah Montague, I co-directed WNYC’s ‘Shakespeare Marathon’
Edinburgh Fringe Theater Festival, August 2011. Wrote and directed From the Fire
. Winner of the UK/Music Theater Awards: Best Music, Best Production and Best New Musical. Named an Edinburgh “Cultural Highlight of 2011” and “Pick of the Fringe” by The Scotsman. www.trianglefromthefire.com
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, The Walter Reade Theater, January and March 2012. Co-created and directed SLAM 102: Verbal Velocity
which was commissioned by Lincoln Center’ ‘Meet the Artist’ Series. Through an additional grant from Cisco International, in January 2012, created an interactive performance for NYC students and for students in Nebraska and Oklahoma. SLAM 102 will perform at the Walter Reade Theater in fall 2012 and spring 2013. The piece was created in collaboration with three spoken word poets and explores different genres of poetry. http://about.lincolncenter.org/education-community/lincoln-center-education/meet-the-artist/meet-the-artist/schedule
Harlem Stage: WeDaPeople’s Cabaret
, September 2011. Directed The Mighty Third Rail performance group in a piece called “Learn/Unlearn.”
MAPP International: An “Artist/ Facilitator” for MAPP International’s Interconnectivity Project in 2011/2012, a new initiative by MAPP modeled on Sekou Sundiata’s “America Project.”
WNYC’s Jerome L Green Performance Space ‘T Is For Tom Series’
: Stoppard Radio Works and A New Theater of Sound, June 2011. Directed Carol Shelley and Simon Jones in Tom Stoppard’s In the Native State
as part of the “T” Is for Tom series on WNYC and WQXR.
Roxy Regional Theater, Chattanooga, Tennessee, October 2011. Adapted, wrote and directed Mark Twain: Adventures in American Humor
. The piece also performed at libraries and schools in NYC and New England in 2010-12.
MobilityShifts: International Future of Learning Summit, October 2011. Directed Project Shift
a multimedia performance piece examined the past, present and future of education and its connection to technology, different forms of digital fluency and DIY learning.
The Times Center, June 2011. Directed a series of choral pieces from From the Fire
for the Sydney Hillman Foundation’s Excellence in Journalism Awards.
Judson Memorial Church, March, 2011. Wrote and directed a new work, From the Fire
, with music by the composer, Liz Swados, which performed at the historic Judson Memorial Church for the centennial of The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire with a cast of Lang students and industry professionals. A documentary about the Judson version of From the Fire
by WNET’s Sunday Arts Program was nominated for a 2011 NY Emmy. www.trianglefromthefire.com
Remember The Triangle Fire Coalition and the ILGWU/UAW’s Centennial Memorial: Choral pieces from FTF were performed on March 25, 2011, outside the Ash Building and were featured on CNN and news programs around the world. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDRyWaEgW74
The Morgan Library, December 2010. Wrote and directed Mark Twain: Timeless Humor
for the Morgan Library’s performance space in conjunction with the Morgan Museum’s exhibition “The Genius of Mark Twain” and the New York Public Library.
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, 2008-10. Collaboratively created and directed SLAM 101: Verbal Combat
, an interactive spoken word piece about different genres of poetry, performed throughout the 2008-09 and 2009-10 academic years. Featured on the cover of Lincoln Center’s “Meet the Artist” brochures. SLAM 101
performed at the Fashion Institute of Technology in 2009. SLAM 101
was also booked by Young Audiences of New York and toured schools throughout the NY metro area, 2009-12.
WNYC/NPR, the Jerome L Green Performance Space, May 2009. In collaboration with producer, Sarah Montague, directed the chorus of Fall of The City
, in a revival of Archibald MacLeish’s 1937 classic radio drama at WNYC. Winner of the 2009, Women in Radio, Gracie Award for best local drama.
New School University: 2006-12. Recent productions directed include: Marie Irene Fornes’s Fefu and Her Friends
, Tennessee Williams’ Camino Real
, The Tempest
, The Importance of Being Earnest
, Waiting for Godot
, Three Sisters
, The Exonerated
, America is in the Room
and The Odets Project
2012: Lang College Civic Engagement & Social Justice grant to document Theater & Health Advocacy course.
2011: From the Fire won the Edinburgh Fringe Festival UK/Music Theater Awards for
Best Music, Best Production and Best New Musical.
2011: Grant to support the Edinburgh production of From the Fire from the Foundation for Jewish Culture.
2011: Sydney Hillman Foundation: Grant to fund the filming and editing a documentary of From the Fire, which performed at Judson Memorial Church for the Centennial of The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. The documentary is archived at the Keel Center at Cornell University.
2011: ILGWU Heritage Foundation, Grant to support the performance of From The Fire for the centennial of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire.
2011: ACBP: The Bronfman Foundation. Grant to significantly supported the Judson production of From the Fire.
2010: Provost Events grant which supported OPEN AIR: Symposium on the Future of Radio Theater at WNYC’s Jerome L Green Performance Space. Funds matched by WNYC, New York Public Radio.
2010: Gracie Award from the American Women in Radio and Television for Best Local Drama. The Fall of the City, by Archibald MacLeish. In collaboration with director/producer Sarah Montague, directed the chorus of the revival of the 1937 classic at the Jerome L Green Performance Space at WNYC, New York Public Radio.
2008: Lang College Commencement speaker.
2011, 2009, and 2008: Nominated for The New School’s Distinguished Teaching Award.