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Natalie Crohn Schmitt

Professor Emeritus



Ph.D. Stanford University
Master of Arts, University of Chicago
Bachelor of Arts, University of Chicago


Natalie Crohn Schmitt, Professor Emerita, Theatre and English, is the author of Actors and Onlookers: Theatre and Twentieth-Century Scientific Views of Theatre; Befriending the Commedia dell’Arte of Flaminio Scala: The Comic Scenarios; Performing Commedia dell’Arte, 1570–1630 and of fifty refereed articles and book chapters on a range of topics in theatre theory from Aristotle to John Cage and in criticism from medieval drama to contemporary experimental theatre. She was co-founder and founding director of the Looking Glass Theatre, Providence, Rhode Island.

Her awards include two National Endowment for the Arts Senior Fellowships, an Illinois Humanities Institute Fellowship, a Stanford Humanities Associate Fellowship, and first place Illinois Humanities Council Literary Award. For American Theatre in Higher Education, she served as Conference Planner for Theory and Criticism, Co-chair of the Theory and Criticism Section, and as a regional advisor to its directing project. For the American Society for Theatre Research, she served on the executive committee and as treasurer. She was Associate Editor for the Educational Theatre Journal and is presently Associate Editor for the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism. She continues her research on the drama of W. B. Yeats and on commedia dell’arte. On July 4, 2020, she received an Ennio Flaiano Award, sponsored by the Ministry of Italian Culture for her book Performing Commedia dell’Arte, 1570–1630 (London: Routledge, 2020).