Assistant Professor, Theatre and Performance Studies
Ph.D., Southern Illinois University Carbondale
M.A. University of South Florida
B.A. University o f South Florida
At an early age, I recognized the power of performance--my love for performing. I was 11 when my parents enrolled me in a drama camp after countless summers of trying different things--from karate to comics, from tennis to ceramics! Theatre was what stuck. It was truly transformative. It was a place I could try on new ideas, both play with and strengthen my imagination, and feel accepted.
Performance is not merely something we observe on stage, but it is also a way of being in the world. I have come to appreciate viewing life as a kind of theatricality that has allowed me to understand and participate in the world differently. While knowledge of performance allows me to explain my reality and the realities of others, it also provides me with the ability to create change. I am thrilled to have a career that allows me to show students how performance --ever present--can change people's lives.
As assistant professor and program coordinator of Theatre and Performance Studies (TAP), I teach a variety of courses, such as storytelling, performing culture and identity, performance and social change, performance art, directing, and writing as performance--all courses that explore my interests in the value of performing one's own stories as well as the stories of others, how performance engages society and politics, and how we perform gender, sexuality, race, class, ethnicity, etc. on a daily basis. I also teach courses in improvisation, voice and movement, new media and performance, Chicagoland theatre, public address, and, for our first freshman class in 2014, a first year seminar in global citizenship. For more information about my research, visit: https://govst.academia.edu/PatrickSantoro.
I earned a doctorate in Performance Studies from Southern Illinois University Carbondale and a master's in Communication Studies and bachelor's in Humanities from the University of South Florida. I have worked as an actor, director, writer, and stage manager in professional and educational theatre for over 20 years. Representative acting credits include roles in Grease, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Our Town, and Charles Dickens's The Old Curiosity Shop. Representative directing credits include Baggage (winner of Source Theatre's 21st Annual Washington Theatre Festival 10-Minute Play Competition), The Laramie Project, a contemporary retelling of the Greek myth Icarus, and, at GSU, A Raisin in the Sun, Fahrenheit 451, and the poetry of Anne Sexton in her take on the Grimm's fairy tales. In addition to more traditional works of theatre, I participate in the creation of performance art, installation art, and video projects.
In 1997, I received the "Chappie" James Most Promising Teacher Award--an early acknowledgement of my passion for teaching. Years later, I still feel that passion, reminded of my desire to teach each and every time I see my students' widening eyes, their inquisitive faces, their relaxed bodies, their warm and encouraging interactions with one another, their voices growing with confidence. Teachers create formative learning and life experiences, and I respect the ways in which education enriches and changes students' lives--how the classroom becomes a space for students to be who they are while getting them to think beyond what they already know toward who they have yet to become.
For more information about the TAPS program and how you can get involved, visit (and like us!) at www.facebook.com/TAPGSU