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Vivian Appler

Blurred image of the arch used as background for stylistic purposes.
Associate Professor of Performance Studies

Vivian Appler is a scholar/artist with areas of expertise in the science performance, feminist performance, practice-as-research (PaR), devised theatre, and puppetry. She is co-editor of the edited collection, Identity, Culture, and the Science Performance: Volume 1: From the Lab to the Streets (2022) as well as its forthcoming sister volume, From the Curious to the Quantum (2023). Together, the collection of essays, interviews, and creative works proposes the science performance as a holistic model of cultural production that values multiple creative and critical domains while challenging traditional disciplinary hierarchies and social barriers.  Other scholarly writing has been published in PARtake, Global Performance Studies, Theatre History Studies, Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, The Journal of American Drama and Theatre, Comparative Drama, and the Routledge Guide to Jacques Lecoq. She is a former fellow of the Huntington Library and Fulbright International. Her devised and PaR projects encounter questions pertaining to S.T.E.A.M., access, and equity. At UGA, she directed Silent Sky, by Lauren Gunderson. With the support of a grant from the Willson Center, she has curated a residency, "I Love You (Earth) Day" with performance artists Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens. With The Well Theatre Company, she is collaborating on The Mouse and the Buddha, a multi-media performance that asks questions about mindfulness in children. Full-length devised works about science include Particle Play: A Romance for Quarks, Strings, and Other Things and the solo show, In the Still of the Night: Andromeda’s Dark Stuff, which premiered in 2013. Her research has been supported with grants from NASA’s SC Space Consortium, the South Carolina Arts Commission, SC Humanities, and other organizations.


Ph.D., Theatre History and Performance Studies, University of Pittsburgh

M.A., Performance Studies, Queen Mary University of London

Conservatory, Dell'Arte International School of Physical Theatre

B.A., Theatre, College of William and Mary


Fulbright Fellowship, IIE,  Switzerland 

Huntington Library, Dibner Research Fellowship in the History of Science and Technology

American Society for Theatre Research Collaborative Research Award

SC Arts Commission, Arts Education

SC Humanities Grant

Karen Alane Robinson Children's Literature Fellowship


Selected Publications:

Vivian Appler and Meredith Conti (eds), Identity, Culture, and the Science Performance, Volume 1: From the Lab to the Street (London: Bloomsbury, 2022)

Vivian Appler and Meredith Conti (eds), Identity, Culture, and the Science Performance, Volume 2: From the Curious to the Quantum (London: Bloomsbury, 2023)

Vivian Appler with Kenya Gadsden, "The 'A' in STEAM: PAR as Fifth-Space for Research and Learning in the Arts and Sciences," PARtake: The Journal of Performance as Research 4.1 (2021)

Vivian Appler, "Titan's 'Goodbye Kiss': NASA's Allegorical Rockets and the Conquest of Space," Global Performance Studies 2.2 (2019)

Vivian Appler, " 'Shuffled together under the Name of a Farce': Finding Nature in Aphra Behn's The Emperor of the Moon,Theatre History Studies (2018)

Vivian Appler, "Moonwalking with Laurie Anderson: Imagining a Feminist Performance of Science in Laurie Anderson's The End of the Moon," Journal of American Drama and Theatre 28.2 (2016)

Vivian Appler, "Among Actions, Objects, and Ideas: The Telescope in Thomas Tomkis's Albumazar," Comparative Drama 50.1 (Spring 2016)

Articles Featuring Vivian Appler

For the last decade, Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens have been creating performance under the rubric of "ecosexuality" in which they playfully provoke audiences to think differently about their relationship to the Earth: instead of imagining Earth as mother,…

Athens, GA – UGA Theatre presents “Silent Sky,” written by Lauren Gunderson and directed by Dr. Vivian Appler. Performances will be held in the Cellar Theatre of the Fine Arts Building on September 29-30, October 4-6 at 8 p.m. and October 1 & 8 at 2 p.m. A…

Silent Sky Callbacks

Saturday, August 26 | 1:00PM-4:00PM

Room 115 | Fine Arts Bldg.

Please enter building through the…

UGA Theatre will hold auditions and callbacks for Fall Semester productions of Silent Sky and Mother Courage and Her Children in person at the Fine Arts Building on Baldwin Street on Monday, August 21…

The UGA Department of Theatre and Film Studies has added two new faculty to its ranks with Dr. Vivian Appler and Dr. Khalid Long. 

Events with Vivian Appler
Room 400 | Fine Arts Building
Room 201 | Fine Arts Building
Room 201 | Fine Arts Building

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