Liam Gibbs (LA’18) has recently been published in the August 2019 issue of the Journal of the Society for American Music. Based on his senior honors thesis, his article focuses on digitally rendered music in Broadway orchestras.
Gibbs spent the 2018-2019 season as Literary Apprentice at McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, NJ. Over the course of the season, he assisted playwrights Ken Ludwig, Eleanor Burgess, and Douglas McGrath, tracking script changes during rehearsals for their world premiere plays The Gods of Comedy, The Niceties, and The Age of Innocence, respectively. He also coordinated developmental readings and workshops for new works, including Jiehae Park’s The Aves and Jason Robert Brown and Jonathan Marc Sherman’s new musical The Connector. “I was also involved in quite a bit of artistic engagement activities, delivering pre-show Inside Story talks before performances and moderating post-show discussions with cast members,” said Gibbs, “and I worked alongside the Literary Manager to gather research for productions, write content for website and program articles, and read script submissions.”
For the 2019-2020 season, Gibbs is one of two Dramaturgy & Literary Management Apprentices at Actors Theatre of Louisville. Alongside 38 other apprentices in the Professional Training Company (PTC), including 18 actors, he serves as a lead dramaturg on PTC shows (which are created and produced almost entirely by apprentices, with support from staff and guest artists). He also serves as assistant dramaturg for the theater’s mainstage and Humana Festival of New American Plays productions, in which he’ll conduct research and help to facilitate script changes, working alongside one of four lead staff dramaturgs.
According to Gibbs, “I certainly would not have gotten to this point without the education and mentorship offered by the PAD. Specifically, Carter’s playwriting courses allowed me to dive deep into dramatic form and craft and to immerse myself in the nuts and bolts of new play development; Henry’s history and analysis courses, along with my time working as his research assistant on two book projects about Tennessee Williams, helped me learn the history of the field and hone my research, analysis, and writing skills when discussing theatre; and Paige’s Contemporary American Theatre course (which I think should be a requirement for all second-semester seniors) introduced me to Actors Theatre of Louisville, brought me to the Humana Festival (fully funded!), and helped push my theatre thinking and knowledge from a historical lens to a contemporary one.“