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Dr. Robert Shimko
Director of the School of Theatre & Dance
Head of B.F.A. Playwriting/Dramaturgy

Dr. Rob Shimko has served as the Director of the School of Theatre & Dance at the University of Houston and the Executive Director of the Houston Shakespeare Festival (HSF) since 2016. He also has the dual role of Literary Director for HSF, plus he serves as head of the BFA program in Playwriting/Dramaturgy.  Rob is also the Company Dramaturg for The Catastrophic Theatre, Houston’s leading avant-garde theatre company. Outside of his ongoing dramaturgy positions with HSF and Catastrophic, Rob has over seventy professional dramaturgy credits including several productions at the Alley Theatre as well as productions at the Guthrie Theater, Stages Repertory Theatre, Harlem Stage, 4th Wall Theatre, and the Classical Theatre Company, among others.  

Rob is a proud recipient of the University of Houston Teaching Excellence Award. He is co-editor of the book Public Theatres and Theatre Publics, a former Book Review Editor for the journal Theatre History Studies, and a recipient of the Robert A. Schanke Theatre History Research Award.  Rob’s scholarly writing has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies including Theatre JournalTheatre History StudiesThe Wiley Encyclopedia of British Literature 1660-1789Theatre Historiography: Critical Interventions, and Querying Difference in Theatre History. Favorite productions as a director include: Evening at the Talk House for The Catastrophic Theatre and the premieres of UH student-written plays The Narrator, Brick Wall, The End of Side A, CuckooThicker than HoneyWinners, and The Debasers. He is the author of the play Specks, available through Samuel French, Inc.