Dr. Meredith Conti (she/her) is Associate Professor of Theatre at the University at Buffalo, SUNY (UB) and a historian of nineteenth-century theatre and popular culture in the United States and Britain. Her research variously explores the intersections of theatre and medicine; nineteenth- and early twentieth-century popular entertainment forms (including world fairs, vaudeville, Wild West shows, and fancy shooting exhibitions); gender and race in the Victorian period; and guns and gun violence in theatre.
Dr. Conti's first book, Playing Sick: Performances of Illness in the Age of Victorian Medicine, was published in 2019 by Routledge. She is currently editing two essay collections that are forthcoming in 2022: Theatre and the Macabre, co-edited with Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr., to be published as part of the University of Wales Press’s Horror Studies series; and Identity, Culture, and the Science Performance, Volume 1: From the Lab to the Streets, co-edited with Vivian Appler, which will appear in Bloomsbury’s Performance and Science: Interdisciplinary Dialogues series. Dr. Conti is also working on her second monograph entitled Gunpowder Plots: A Cultural History of Firearms and the U.S. American Theatre. This new book project has received support from fellowships and grants awarded by the American Society for Theatre Research, the Harry Ransom Center, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, UB’s Gender Institute, and UB’s Humanities Institute. Dr. Conti’s scholarship has appeared in Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, Journal of American Drama and Theatre, Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, Studies in Musical Theatre, and the edited collection Victorian Medicine and Popular Culture, among others.
Dr. Conti serves as Secretary of the American Theatre and Drama Society and the Associate Chair of UB’s Department of Theatre and Dance. She is a past book review editor for Theatre Annual and currently serves on the editorial board of Theatre History Studies. Dr. Conti is a member of the Low Carbon Research Methods Workshop, an international and interdisciplinary collective of climate-conscious scholars working toward the development of a greener academy.
A member of the graduate and undergraduate faculty and an affiliate of UB's Gender Institute, Dr. Conti teaches courses on theatre history, historiography, dramaturgy, and performance research, as well as special topics courses on horror theatre and film and violence in performance. Her work in the theatre includes acting, directing, and dramaturgy.
2018 Playing Sick: Performances of Illness in the Age of Victorian Medicine. London: Routledge.
(2021) Theatre and the Macabre. Co-edited with Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr., Professor and Chair of Theatre Arts, Loyola Marymount University. Cardiff: University of Wales Press.
Monograph in Progress
Gunpowder Plots: A Cultural History of Firearms in the U.S. American Theatre
2019 “Normalizing Disruption: Advocating for Reproductive Health in Academia.” Co-authored with Adanma Onyedike Barton, Kristi Good, and Ariel Nereson. Theatre Topics 29, no. 1 (March 2019), 59-70.
2018 “Look to the Crisis Actors.” Theatre Journal 70, no. 4 (December 2018), 439-441.
2018 “The Sound of Silence: A Viewer’s Guide to Emma González’s March for Our Lives Speech.” Theatre Journal 70, no. 4 (December 2018), E8-E11.
2018 “‘What if This Bullet is My Legacy?’: The Guns of Hamilton.” Studies in Musical Theatre 12, no. 2 (June 2018), 251-56.
(2021) “Where He Fell: Macabre Tourism and the Immortal Death of Abraham Lincoln at Washington DC’s Ford’s Theatre.” In Theatre and the Macabre, Meredith Conti and Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr., editors.
2015 “Ungentlemanly Habits: The Dramaturgy of Drug Addiction in Fin-de-Siècle Theatrical Adaptations of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” In Victorian Medicine and Popular Culture, edited by Tabitha Sparks and Louise Penner (London: Routledge, 2015), 109-124. Peer-reviewed.
2019 Review of Renata Kobetts Miller’s The Victorian Actress in the Novel and On the Stage. Journal of Nineteenth-Century Gender Studies 15, no. 3 (winter 2019). Ncgsjournal.com.
2019 Review of Sophie Chiari and Mickaël Popelard’s Spectacular Science, Technology, and Superstition in the Age of Shakespeare. British Society of Literature and Science, November 2019. Bsls.ac.uk.
2019 Review of Alex Mermikides and Gianna Bouchard’s Performance and the Medical Body in Theatre Journal 71, no. 2 (2019), 248-250.
RECENT FELLOWSHIPS AND AWARDS
2019-2020 Research Fellowship, Harry Ransom Center, Austin, TX
2019-2020 Residency Fellowship, Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, WY
2019-2020 Humanities Institute Faculty Fellowship, University at Buffalo, SUNY
2019 Faculty Research Award, Gender Institute, University at Buffalo, SUNY
2018 Research Fellowship, American Society for Theatre Research
2018 Julian Park Publication Fund Award, College of Arts and Sciences, University at Buffalo, SUNY
2018 Nominee and finalist, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipend
2017 Brooks McNamara Publishing Subvention Award, American Society for Theatre Research