Playwright & Artistic Director
Before Jacob, he/him, was a father heading the playwriting MFA program at SIU and living in St. Louis, he was a 1970s kid in California watching PBS puppets. In the 1990s, Jacob was a high school dropout making sandwiches in a deli in Portland. The teachers at Clackams Community College and Edward Albee saved him, and he got degrees from Reed College and Northwestern. In 1998 he saw a VHS tape of Tadeusz Kantor's theatre with mannequins and he's lived in Poland repeatedly to understand it. Now he collaborates with his students a bunch, and he founded contraband Theatre in 2016. His plays include See You in a Minute (a comedic pandemic play set in 2041), 18 Months After November (a streaming play about a dystopic USA after a contested election), Hath Taken Away (the Book of Job in the modern Midwest), In the Shadow of his Language (his vexed feelings about academia), Joan's Laughter (a kick-ass play about Joan of Arc), and his most-produced shorts, "No Winter, No Worries" (funny) and "Saddam's Lions (Not funny). Jacob's work has been supported by the Alliance Theatre, the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center (for puppets!!), the Great Plains Theatre Conference, the Last Frontier Theatre Conference, the Sewanee Writers' Conference, a Fulbright, the NEH, Krakow's International Cultural Center, the Illinois Arts Council, the Regional Arts Commission in St. Louis, and more. Jacob loves dramaturgs and has worked with Martine Kei Green-Rogers, Heather Helinsky, and Dan Smith. His plays and scholarship have been published by Routledge and Vintage. You can read his plays on New Play Exchange. His website has too many words, but, what can you do? He's a writer.