Faculty Research

The Department of Theatre and Dance provides a home for innovative research in theatre, dance, design, and technology that intersects with our active performance and production opportunities. Faculty are top scholars and practitioners who lead the way in national and international conversations on contemporary studies and trends in their field. Students at both the undergraduate and graduate are able to work alongside faculty on exciting research, as well as exploring their own areas of interest with departmental support. 

Research Areas


Melanie Aceto: Contemporary technique, Improvisation, Composition

Anne Burnidge: Choreography, Holistic dance training practices, Embodied applications of feminist theory and Theories of the Body

Jeanne Fornarola: The benefits of dance in arts in education programs in K-12 schools and developmental markers in social the behavioral and cognitive effects of dance in schools

Ariel Nereson: Dance studies, embodiment, critical race studies, early 20th century popular entertainment, musical theatre dance, cognitive studies

Tom Ralabate: the rich multicultural, multiethnic traditions and histories that inform jazz dance; the comparative study of jazz dance techniques and styles; and the comparative socialization of jazz dance movement through vernacular time periods

Kerry Ring

Design and Technology

Cathy Norgren: Costume Design

Jon Shimon: Theatre Technology

Theatre and Performance Studies

Meredith Conti

Maria Horne: Methodology and Pedagogy of Acting, focusing on their intersection with Neuroscience and Cognition

Lindsay Hunter

Eero Laine: Theatre and Performance Studies; Cultural Studies; Popular Culture

Danielle Rosvally: Shakespeare, America’s Nineteenth Century, Digital Humanities, Fight Direction