Denis Salter

 Denis Salter
Contact Information
514-398-4400 Ext 00330
Email address: 
denis.salter [at]

McGill University
Department of English
853 Sherbrooke Street West
Arts Building
Montreal, QC H3A 0G5 CANADA

Faculty Members
Associate Professor
Drama and Theatre

B. A. (UBC), M.A. (University of Toronto), Ph.D. (University of Toronto); Associate Professor

Early Modern
Nineteenth Century
Teaching areas: 

History of Shakespeare in performance
Canadian drama and theatre
Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Drama
Victorian and Edwardian stage history
Dramaturgy, theory, and criticism
Evidence-based theatre historiographies
Issues in cultural pluralism, social activism, politics, and the stage
Problematic keywords in (Canadian) theatre historiography

    Taught previously at: 

    University of Calgary; University of Leeds (Visiting Professorship), Dalhousie University

    Awards, honours, and fellowships: 
    • Between Wor(l)ds: Lepage’s Shakespeare Cycle.” In Theater sans frontières: Essays on the Dramatic Universe of Robert Lepage, ed. Joseph I. Donohoe, Jr. and Jane M. Koustas. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2000. 191-204. This essay won the Richard Plant Prize of the Association for Canadian Theatre Research (now the Canadian Association for Theatre Research) for the best article in English in 2004.
    • “Hector Willoughby Charlesworth and the Nationalization of Cultural Authority, 1890-1945. In Establishing Our Boundaries: English-Canadian Theatre Criticism, ed. Anton Wagner. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999. [137]-76. This essay won the Richard Plant Prize of the Association for Canadian Theatre Research (now the Canadian Association for Theatre Research) for the best article in English in 2000.
    Selected publications: 

    Edited Collection:

    Chouhan, Anjna and Denis Salter, eds. Lives of Shakespearian Actors: Henry Irving. Volume 2 in Lives of Shakespearian Actors V: Herbert Beerbohm Tree, Henry Irving, and Ellen Terry By Their Contemporaries. 3 Volumes. London: Pickering and Chatto, 2012. 1392 pp. ISBN 978 1 85196 931 9.

    For a description of all 3 volumes, see here:

    Special Journal Issues:

    Since January 2006, I have served as the Associate Editor, with Ted Little as Editor-in-Chief and, since 2012, with Nikki Shaffeeullah as Editor-in-Chief, of alt. theatre: cultural diversity and the stage, a quarterly magazine published under the aegis of Teesri Duniya Theatre. alt. theatre is Canada’s only professional journal examining intersections between politics, cultural plurality, social activism, and the stage. Teesri Duniya Theatre is a Montreal intercultural theatre company with a mandate to produce socially engaged theatre that reflects Canada’s social and cultural diversity.

    We have published articles and other modes of writing by and about Monique Mojica, Shelley Scott, Jill Carter, Clarke Mackey, Leanore Lieblein, Yvette Nolan, Hilary Halba, Lydia Wilkinson, Anusree Roy, Evelyne de la Chenelière, Louise Forsyth, Jennifer Capraru, Michelle MacArthur, Rahul Varma, Sonja Linden, Barry Freeman, Naila Keleta Mae, Lisa Ndejuru, Samer Al-Saber, Savannah Walling, Karis Shearer, Rob Ormsby, Guillermo Verdecchia, Ric Knowles, Guillaume Bernardi, Rosa Laborde, M. NourbeSe Philip, Isabelle Zufferey-Boulton, Emer O’Toole, d’bi young, Holly Luhning, Philippe Ducros, Valerie Sing Turner, Nadia Homsi, Selena Couture, Layne Coleman, Donna-Michelle St. Bernard, Jennifer Drouin, Wajdi Mouawad, Philip Akin, Silvija Jestrovic, Erin Hurley, Catherine Graham, Charles Hayter, Muoi Nene, Ruth Howard, Will Kymlicka, Seth Soulstein, Headlines Theatre, The Africa Trilogy, Nisha Sajnani, Sandeep Bhagwati, Porte Parole, Alejandro Yoshizawa, Yael Farber, Soldiers’ Tale Untold, Hourig Attarian, Ground Zero Productions, Steven High, Puente Theatre, MT Space, Jan Selman, Rachael Van Fossen, the SSHRC-funded Life Stories of Montrealers Displaced By War, Genocide, and Other Violations Project, Black Theatre Workshop, Aparna Sindhoor, Robert Lepage, Nightwood Theatre, Floyd Favel, Alex Tigchelaar, Aida Jordão, Marjan Moosavi, Shirley Tse, Angel M. Meyer (Pony), J. Paul Halferty, Tawiah Ben M’carthy, Kelsy Vivash, Jean O’Hara, Amy Shostak, Jenn Griffin, Marily Norry, Jimena Ortuzar, Linda Hill, Rachel Penny, Julien Naggar, Manpreet Dhaliwal, Jane Plastow, Lib Spry, Metachroma Theatre, Audrey Kobayashi, Nadine Holdsworth, Daniel David Moses, Curtis Peeteetuce, Martha Herrera-Lasso, Kathryn Prince, Eleanor Foulkes, Savannah Walling, Jennifer Capraru, and Alberto Guevara. alt. theatre 9.1 (September 2011) and  9.2 (December 2011) are two expanded, ground-breaking theme issues on the subject of oral history & performance.

    Selected Articles:

    “Teaching, Performing and Responding to Shakespeare in Multicultural (Postcolonial) Canada and Quebec.” Revised essay printed in Canadian Shakespeare, ed. Susan Knutson. Toronto: Playwrights Canada Press, 2010. [42]-53.

    “On Native Ground: Canadian Theatre Historiography and the Postmodernism/Post-colonialism Axis.” Reprinted in Theatre Histories, ed. Alan Filewod. Toronto: Playwrights Canada Press, 2009. 115-123.

    “A Woman of Many Parts,” published in the Souvenir Program for the Shaw Festival’s 2009 production of Michel Tremblay’s Albertine In Five Times, translated by Linda Gaboriau and directed by Micheline Chevrier.

    “(Im)possible Worlds: The Plays of Sharon Pollock.” Reprinted inSharon Pollock, ed. Sherrill Grace and Michelle La Flamme. Toronto: Playwrights Canada Press, 2008. 13-32.

    “Change the World, One Play at a Time: Teesri Duniya Theatre and the Aesthetics of Social Action: Denis Salter talks with Rahul Varma, Ted Little and Jazwant Guzder.” Canadian Theatre Review No. 125 (Winter 2006): [69]-74.

    “Exile, Return and the New South Africa: An Interview with Anthony Akerman.” South African Theatre Journal 18 (2004): [255]--276.

    “The Performance of Their Lives: Laurence Irving, Mabel Hackney, and the Empress of Ireland.” First Knight: The Journal of the Irving Society 7.1 (June 2003): 13-51.

    Current research: 

    “Palimpsestic Doubleness:” The principles and practices of actor-managers in editing Shakespearean texts for performance on the nineteenth-century stage.

    A historically-situated analysis of recurrent problematic “keywords” (following on the work of Raymond Williams and, more recently, Tony Bennett, Lawrence Grossberg, and Meaghan Morris) in (Canadian) theatre historiography / history.

    Shakespeare and the theatrical sublime: the art of Henry Irving, Ellen Terry, and Edward Gordon Craig.

    Research group: Shakespeare and Performance Research Team (website)

    Building ID: 
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