Lois Weaver '72, of New York City, has been awarded a 2014 Guggenheim Fellowship in the US & Canada Competition Creative Arts - Drama & Performance Art category.
Weaver’s performance work has been at the forefront of gay and lesbian arts and culture. As director and co-founder of Split Britches, one of the first professional feminist theatre companies established in New York in the 1980s, Weaver formulated a postmodern practice that has been central to international academic debates on performance, feminism, gender and spectatorship. She was also co-founder of Spiderwoman Theatre in 1975 and the WOW theatre in New York City in 1980 and is currently Artistic Director for the AiR Supply Collective, an initiative that nurtures and sustains emerging artists in London. She has a part-time position at Queen Mary University of London as Professor of Contemporary Performance Practice.
Throughout her career Weaver has worked to develop new forms of performance that enable citizens of diverse perspectives and backgrounds, often excluded by age, class, gender, and sexuality, to enter into public discourse. Currently, Weaver is working on a book that documents more than three decades of her performance methodologies and situates them within personal and professional memoir and alongside excerpts of her work.
"It didn’t take Lois long to distinguish herself here at Radford when she was a freshman," said Charles L. "Chuck" Hayes, professor emeritus in the Department of Theatre and Cinema. Hayes taught and directed Weaver during her time at RU. "She has not stopped acting and producing cutting edge theatre from that time to the present. Lois Weaver is a very worthy recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship."
Guggenheim Fellowships are awarded by the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, established in 1925 to offer fellowships to assist scholars and artists in furthering their careers. The Fellowships honor women and men who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts across their career. The Foundation receives between 3,500 and 4,000 applications each year. Approximately 200 Fellowships are awarded.