Will Lewis

Will Lewis

Visiting Assistant Professor, Directing and Performance // Theatre // Rueff School

Visiting Assistant Professor // Rueff School of Design, Art, and Performance

Office and Contact

Room: 2185

Email: wwlewis@purdue.edu

Phone: (765) 494-3806

PhD, University of Colorado Boulder
MA, City University of New York/Hunter College


Directing & Performance


Will is an interdisciplinary scholar/artist whose work focuses on the fields of intermedial, postdramatic, and devised performance. In his creative practice he implements site specificity, gaming, interactivity, and social media to explore ethics and politics in the 21st century. His research explores the role of digital interactivity on contemporary audiences and the implications of constant connection to media on how we teach theatre-making. He is also a vocal advocate for the blending of theory and practice by utilizing performance as research (PAR) methodologies. Part of this advocacy includes serving as the founding co-editor of the online journal PARtake:The Journal of Performance as Research whose readership consists of other scholars and artists from over 120 countries worldwide.

Will has trained in devised theatre with SITI Company in New York City, interactive performance making with Blast Theory in the United Kingdom, and worked as a workshop director on new play development for NYU Tisch. He has directed new and canonical works in New York, Los Angeles, and regionally. His directing work has been recognized by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation (Quantified Self) and the Kennedy Center College Theatre festival (Woyzeck: The Endless Cycle 1.0). Will currently serves as ATHE’s Conference Planner for the Directing Program and will serve as the Focus Group Representative starting in 2021. He has published articles and reviews focusing on digital interactivity, practice as research, and political performance in Theatre TopicsPerformance ResearchGPS: Global Performance StudiesTheatre Research International, and New Theatre Quarterly. His recent book chapter in New Directions in Teaching Theatre Arts argues for new ways of teaching theatre-making that focus on interdisciplinary methodologies from theatre, computer science, and UX design. His current co-edited book project, Experiential Theatres: Praxis-Based Approaches to Training 21st Century Theatre Artists (Routledge, 2022) connects digital cultures, interaction design, and performance theory to introduce holistic pedagogical methods for training theatre students to make theatrical events that integrate immersion, participation, game play, and role play. Will has a PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies from the University of Colorado Boulder, a MA in Theatre History and Criticism from CUNY Hunter College, and a BFA in Performance from the University of Memphis.

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