A headshot of Ph.D. candidate Susannah Eig.
Student

PhD

PhD candidate Susannah Eig is a theater director, producer and actor who specializes in Shakespeare’s plays.

The PhD in Creativity at UArts is game-changing. In just two weeks, the program faculty facilitated a cornucopia of experiences that allowed us to stretch in ways we didn’t even know were available to use before. Rather than forcing us into prescribed areas of interest, they asked us to expand our sights and think across new disciplines, using methods we may have not encountered before, and always with the central through-line of: Why does this work matter to me and to the world? Not only have my eyes been thrown wide open to the places my research can go, but also the multitude of ways in which I can get there have been given to me.

Dissertation

"What’s Passed Is Prologue: The Past, the Pandemic, and the American Shakespeare Center"

America and Shakespeare share a complex and multifaceted history. Using the American Shakespeare Center as a mirror of the national narrative, I examine how the health and equity crises of 2020 intersect with Shakespeare and American identity. What might the past, present, and future of this theatre in Staunton, VA—birthplace of Woodrow Wilson and Stonewall Jackson’s headquarters during the Civil War—tell us about how we can use Shakespeare to combat racism, invite discourse, and ask the difficult questions?

Committee

Zach Savich, Associate Professor, Cleveland Institute of Art; Visiting Program Faculty, the PhD in Creativity, University of the Arts

Publications

"No Such Thing as a Stupid Question: On Emma Smith's 'This is Shakespeare'," The Cleveland Review of Books

"Crossing Lines, Playing Roles," Beyond Words Magazine

"'But in this changing, what is your intent?' A Conversation with Sarah Enloe," The Shakespeare Association of America