Dr. Rachel Rhoades

Assistant Professor
Applied Theatre

Masters in Education in Community Arts (Specialization in Theatre), Lesley University, Cambridge MA
PhD in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development (emphasis on Critical Pedagogy), Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto

Office: MWS 313
905 688 5550 x4349

Dr. Rhoades, Assistant Professor, has worked as an applied theatre practitioner, educator, and researcher with students ranging from Grade 1 to the graduate level for 12 years in community- and school-based settings in Boston, Toronto, and now in St. Catharines.

Originally from New Hampshire, Rachel completed her Masters in Education in Community Arts with a specialization in Theatre from Lesley University. There she won the Diane Shannon Price Student Leadership Award from Lesley University for the beneficial impact of her participatory drama-based research study with marginalized youth artists in Boston, Arts & Youth Leadership Development in Action: Maximizing Potential through Youth Performing Arts Programs.

She received her PhD in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto with an emphasis on Critical Pedagogy. Her doctoral research, Youth Artists for Justice: Examining Participation in Social Movements and Envisioning Futures through Applied Theatre, interrogated how racialized, socioeconomically under-resourced secondary school-age youth in Toronto conceptualize their current and future roles within contemporary social movements and the larger political sphere through ethnodrama. For this study, she received the national Ada Slaight Drama in Education Research Award through Young Peoples Theatre in Toronto.

In St. Catharines, she is currently collaborating with PRIDE Niagara and the Niagara Folks Arts Multicultural Centre on a Forum Theatre project with Social Issues Theatre for Community Engagement students. Her research interests include dialogues between transnational youth artist activists, Black feminist and Marxist feminist pedagogies, and collaborative applied theatre-based action research with marginalized communities.

Gallagher, K. Rhoades, R. Bie, S and Cardwell, N. (2017). Drama in education and applied theatre, from morality and socialization to play and post-colonialism. In G. Noblit (Ed.), Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Education. New York: Oxford University Press.

Gallagher, K., Starkman, R., & Rhoades, R. (2017). Performing counter-narratives and mining creative resilience: Using Applied Theatre to theorize notions of youth resilience. Journal of Youth Studies, 20(2), 216-233.

Rhoades, R. (2016). Nurturing assets through collaborative arts-based inquiry with youth. Queen’s University Graduate Student Symposium, Selected Papers, 10, 55-71.

Rhoades, R. (2019). Inciting solidarity through plural performativity and pedagogical aesthetics in ethnodrama with marginalized youth in Toronto. ArtsPraxis, 5(2), 129-143.

Rhoades, R. (2018). Intersectionality and solidarity in curriculum-making theatre encounters with marginalized youth researcher-artists. Journal of the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies, 16(1), 185-198.

Rhoades, R. & Rodricks, D. (in press) Toward a creative solidarity: Implications of a drama pedagogy for the radical scholar-practitioner. In K. C. Schmitz and N. Grant (Eds.), Radical youth pedagogy: Flipping the culture of the classroom.

2016: Reflections of Tomorrow, original play by Youth Artists for Justice, Young Peoples’ Theatre, Toronto

2014: Looking Back While Moving Forward, original play by Teen Leadership Council, Citi Performing Arts Center, Boston

2014: Lobster & Peach, original play by City Spotlights Leadership Program, Citi Performing Arts Center, Boston

2013: I Am the Destination, original play by City Spotlights Leadership Program, Citi Performing Arts Center, Boston

2012: Real Talk, original play by City Spotlights Leadership Program, Citi Performing Arts Center, Boston

2011: Parting the Curtain, playwright, documentary theatre piece based on 17 interviews with and artistic products created by people living with mental illness globally

2016-2017: Ada Slaight Memorial Drama in Education Research Award
2014-2019: Connaught International Doctoral Scholarship
2013: Lesley University Diane Shannon Price Student Leadership Award
2013: Award of Excellence in Innovation, Citi Performing Arts Center

2014-2019: Supporting Our Youth, Sherbourne Health Centre, Toronto

2014-2016: City View Alternative School, Drama Week Co-Director, Toronto

2015: For Youth Initiative, Female Empowerment Drama Instructor, Toronto

2012-2013: Boston Playback Company

2012-2014: The Hope Center, Co-Creator of Opening Doors for the Arts, Boston

Auckland, New Zealand
Paper Presenter: Ethnodrama of Intersectionality: Neoliberalism & Youth Resistance in Toronto
Paper Co-Presenter: The Challenges and Methodologies of Public Science and Art

July 2015
National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Co-Presenter: Applied Drama with Homeless Youth: Perspectives on Socio-Spatial Polarization

New York, NY
Paper Presenter: Ethnodrama with Marginalized Youth as Educational Resistance and Re-envisioning
Paper Co-Presenter: Dreaming the Possible: Exploring Global Worlds and Micro-Ecologies Using the Pedagogies of Drama

April 2016
Washington, DC
Panelist: Applied Theatre as Methodological Intervention in Qualitative Research with Urban Youth

April 2016
New York University
Workshop Presenter: Drama Pedagogy of Resistance: Anchoring Critical Participatory Ethnodrama Action Research with Image Theatre