Dave Peterson -


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Dave Peterson is a PhD candidate in Theatre Arts at the University of Pittsburgh. His dissertation, Clowning on and through Shakespeare: Late 20th and Early 21st Century Clowning’s Tactical Use in Shakespeare Performance, examines twentieth century clown adaptations of Shakespeare to investigate how clown performance opens up alternative ways of existing in relationship to power structures. At the University of Pittsburgh Dave has taught courses in introduction to theatre, dramatic literature, introductory performance, a special topics performance course, and Shakespeare. He has also taught for the Pittsburgh International Children's Theatre and the Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre. Dave directed the North American premiere of Finegan Kruckemeyer's THIS GIRL LAUGHS, THIS GIRLS CRIES, THIS GIRL DOES NOTHING at Pitt, and remounted the production for to tour to schools in the Pittsburgh area. Other directorial credits at MSU and Pitt include ZOO STORY, ONE FOR THE ROAD, ‘NIGHT MOTHER, ROUGH FOR THEATRE I, NOBODY HERE BUT US CHICKENS, and BEND DOWN MY STRANGE FACE, the world premiere of a student work at the University of Pittsburgh. Dave has served as dramaturg for productions at Michigan State University and the Michigan Shakespeare Festival.  He is the advisor and playwright-in-residence for the University of Pittsburgh’s Red Eye Theatre Festival. He has assistant directed AS YOU LIKE IT (Pitt Rep), HER HAMLET (Pitt Rep), and was directorial overseer of the remount of SITS' LESSONS FROM THE BIRDS. Dave holds a BA in Theatre and History from the University of Michigan and an MA in Theatre from Michigan State University, and is a member of the American Society for Theatre Research and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education. 




Tiririca and Stephen Colbert’s Comic Bodies in the Politics of a Hemispheric America” Paper Presented at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education. Orlando FL, August 2013.

“Loss in Finnegan Kruckemeyer’s Theatre for Young Audiences.” Paper Presented at The Comparative Drama Conference, Baltimore MD, April 2013.

“Queerness, Failure, and Clown Training.” Paper discussed at the American Theatre and Drama Works in Progress Event at the University of Pittsburgh, March 2013.

“Antony Sher and the Image of a Clown.” Paper Presented at the Mid-American Theatre Conference. St. Louis Missouri. March 2013.

 “W.F. Wallet: Performing Shakespeare without Shakespeare.” Paper discussed at theShakespeare Working Group at the American Society for Theatre Research Conference. Nashville Tennessee, November 2012.

 “Finding an Extremely Shakespearian Performance Mode through Mark Rylance’s Clown Prince of Denmark.” Paper Presented at the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference. Marietta Ohio, October 2012.

 “Shakespeare and The Supreme Court: Arbitrating Historical and National Truth” PaperPresented at Association for Theatre in Higher Education. Washington DC August 2012.

 “Clowning as Performance and Dramaturgy in Two Productions of Godot.” Paper Presented at The Comparative Drama Conference, Baltimore MD, March 2012.

 “Priscilla Horton and King Lear: The Reemergence and Gendering of the Fool” Paper discussed at The Shakespeare Working Group at the American Society for Theatre Research Conference. Montreal, Québec, Canada, November 2011.

 “Performing Shakespeare’s Clowns: Reevaluating Realism.” Paper Presented at Popular Culture Association of Canada Niagara Falls Canada, May 2011.

 “The Memories and Histories of Sondheim’s Assassins and Follies." Paper Presented at Mid-Atlantic Popular/American Culture Association, Alexandria, Virginia, October 2010.

 "Shakespeare’s Globe: Collisions of Past and Present in Contemporary Globe Performance."Paper discussed at Architecture Working Group at International Federation for Theatre Research, Munich, Germany, 2010.

"Reconstructing Performance Authority at Shakespeare’s Globe." Paper Presented atCUNY Graduate Center's  2010 Graduate Student Conference (Re)Making (Re)presentation, New York City, New York, May, 2010

“’Mewling and Puking’ or ‘Good in Everything’: The Power of Language to Represent and Form Reality in As You Like It.” Paper Presented at the School of Arts and Science Grad Expo, University of Pittsburgh, March 2010