Temporary Stages II (Book)

Critically Oriented Drama Education

Theatre teachers are forced to adapt constantly and they struggle to serve both their students and craft. This book uses a theatre arts programme at a Midwestern high school to explore how change, good or ill, directly impacts students and teachers. Gonzalez shows teachers how to sustain confidence and outlines 'critically conscious' teaching.


Theatre teachers are forced to adapt constantly. Whether responding to advancing technologies, cuts to (or the growth of) their programme or ever-changing governmental mandates, they struggle to serve both their students and their craft. Using a theatre arts programme at one Midwestern high school, this book explores how change, good or ill, directly impacts students as well as teachers. Building on the work of the previous edition of Temporary Stages, Jo Beth Gonzalez shows teachers how to sustain confidence and outlines ‘critically conscious’ teaching, a technique that encourages students to practise self-agency and critical awareness. Essential reading for all theatre teachers, this indispensable resource is a font of innovative classroom and production practices.

Jo Beth Gonzalez has been a classroom teacher of speech, English and theatre for 27 years, the past nineteen at Bowling Green High School in Ohio, where she also directs the theatre program.

'Temporary Stages offers powerful ideas for pre-service and practicing theatre teachers—as well as teachers of teachers—to contemplate. Directly relevant to teaching methods, yet far from a “how-to” text, the book inspires all readers with its fresh, provocative and accessible ideas.'

Joan Lazarus, Head, BFA Theatre Studies Program, The University of Texas at Austin

'I was pleasantly surprised to read that teaching artists were engaged in the bold goal of developing a critical model of collaborative leadership for high school musical theatre. This kind of aim hardly ever shows up in strategic plans, mission statements, or on school websites. As Gonzalez makes clear, the infrastructure must be put in place to invite students to engage with the pedagogical and the aesthetic, but also to make them feel comfortable and validated.' 

Dr. Lorenzo Garcia, Associate Professor of Theatre for Young Audiences, University of North Texas

'Temporary Stages integrates practice with research in ways both compelling and honest. Jo Beth Gonzalez’s integrity, passion and forthright prose make this a useful addition for teachers interested in exploring social justice and identity through performance.' 

Dr. Stephani Etheridge Woodson, Associate Director, School of Theatre & Film, Arizona State University

'This volume is an essential addition to the literature on high school theatre teaching. I believe it will take high school production and classroom practice into the twenty-first century and respond to shifts both in demographics and curriculum reform. It is essential reading for any student considering working in secondary education, whether in a formal classroom context, as a teaching artist, or in applied theatre. ' 

Drew Chappell,Youth Theatre Journal
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