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KYLE A. THOMAS

Scholar | Director | Actor

"Theatre requires the interrogation of that relationship between performance and audience--an act in transcending space to promote the sacred bonds found in community gathered together to glean meaning from story and action."

St. Louis Stories | The Station Theatre (2017)

THE LIFE LIVED THEATRICALLY

Kyle specializes in theatre history, directing theory, and methodologies that champion theatre as an act of community-building in the 21st century. Taking cues from the many facets of theatre history and scholarship as well as building upon a career as an actor and director, Kyle has developed his theory of a Theatre of the Commons, asserting that performance can facilitate, examine, and question how individuals navigate shared space in familiar, but often inequitable, ways; altogether revealing the broader story of a community/city/region as a conversation with its own history of performed identities reinforced within space. Building upon devising techniques learned as a part of studying with Anne Bogart (SITI Company) and Struan Leslie (Royal Shakespeare Company), and working from the foundational dialectal techniques of Bertolt Brecht's Epic Theatre and Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, Kyle continues to redefine theatre as a necessary means of community engagement in an ever-increasing digitalized world.

 

ACADEMIC POSITIONS

Theatre in Academe

 

ASSOCIATE ADJUNCT PROFESSOR OF THEATRE
UNIVERSITY OF INDIANAPOLIS

2018-2019

Courses Taught: Introduction to Theatre | Introduction to Acting | Speech for the Stage | Script Analysis

DirectingIt's a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play (2018, pictured)

INSTRUCTOR OF THEATRE & FILM
PARKLAND COLLEGE

2012-2019

Courses Taught: Theatre Appreciation | Theatre History | Voice & Diction | Film Appreciation | Film History

Directing: Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom (2015, pictured) | How I Became a Pirate (2013) | Mister Paradise (2011)

TEACHING ASSISTANT

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS, URBANA-CHAMPAIGN

2011-2018

Courses Taught: Introduction to Theatre | Broadway Musicals & American Culture | Script Analysis | Theatre History

DirectingViva Verdi! A Night of Italian Opera (2017, pictured)

EDUCATION & RESEARCH

 

PH.D. THEATRE STUDIES

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

M.A. THEATRE HISTORY

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

M.A. Thesis: The Ludus de Antichristo: Playing Power in the Medieval Public Sphere

B.A. MUSICAL THEATRE

Ouachita Baptist University

B.A. Directing Thesis: Absence With Pictures by Kendra A. Thomas

Musical Theatre Recital: Loves | LaboursLost

THEATRE OF THE COMMONS

The Theatre of the Commons is inspired by research efforts in medieval theatre history; wherein monastic familiarity with Classical forms of drama and the use of applied theatricality within the pedagogy of the monastery and wider monastic communities work to inform liturgical experimentation in medieval Europe. Thus, any control, commentary, and/or distribution of performance encoded within liturgical manuscripts must be considered for efforts in sharing political commentary and communal agency that is identifiable only within a performative frame. This argument that early liturgical performance was made malleable through the communal contestation of its social, political, and religious functions defines a medieval theatre that shares much with the social issues theatre and community-based performance practices of today.

(Pictured: The Play About the Antichrist, University of Illinois, 2013)

 

PUBLICATIONS & PRODUCTIONS

 

PUBLICATIONS

The Play of Adam

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Cloisters

December, 2016

I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change

The Champaign-Urbana Theatre Company

February, 2016

Floyd Collins

The Station Theatre

February, 2015

"Ultimately, if there is one thing I know and teach about theatre, it is that theatre is a collaborative art; and as such, our community of theatre artists will come up with ever more inventive and effective ways of reaching new audiences. The theatre will survive. The theatre will thrive in our twenty-first century."

LET’S CONNECT

Get in touch for more information on:

- Workshops on acting, directing, and scholarship in theatre

- Lectures on theatre history, theatre education, and theatre techniques for people in STEM fields

- Booking for directing, acting, and voice work

- Interviews for radio, television, and podcasts