The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Theatre Professor receives Fulbright

Professor Blake Hackler (Courtesy of Blake Hackler)

During his senior year in high school, Assistant Professor of Theatre Blake Hackler made a choice. His decision to study theatre instead of voice or violin made an impact on his life. Now his love for the art form is taking him to Bulgaria.

Hackler received a Fulbright Scholars Grant to research and teach in Sofia, Bulgaria from January-July of next year.

He will be teaching physical acting at New Bulgarian University. Also, he will observe the work of the Sfumato Theatre Laboratory.

“The idea of going aboard and teaching and researching is very interesting to me,”
Hackler said.

According to the program’s website, Fulbright provides 800 faculty and professionals from the United States to teach and research in
140 countries.

The purpose of the exchange is to promote peace and understanding among the international community.

“The area of which he is doing his research is important and his approach is original,” said Stanley Wojewodski Jr., the distinguished professor of directing and chair of the division of theatre.

Bulgaria was not the only country Hackler considered. He was interested in Lebanon, but the European nation’s history stood out to him.

“I am really interested in exploring how theatre has developed and changed post-Glasnost and post-Soviet censorship,” Hackler said.

Hackler has made many achievements in his acting career, including performing on Broadway and Off-Broadway productions.

One of his fondest memories is having the opportunity to play the role of Moritz Stiefel in the original workshop of the Tony-award-winning musical “Spring Awakening.”

“Being in a room with those people and working on that musical, even though it was in workshop form was so exciting because I knew it was a really interesting, exciting, vibrant piece,” Hackler said.

The role was his first job in New York City. He enjoyed being able to be creative and work on a new work.

Currently, Hackler is a company member of Undermain Theatre. He feels privileged to work with talented and passionate artists.

Even though Hackler has made success as an actor, he has a passion for teaching.

“If you said to me that I could act or I could teach but I could no longer do both, I would choose teaching every time,” Hackler said.

Ever since he was little, Hackler wanted to be a teacher. In college, he realized his desire to teach acting.

“He wants to be the best teacher he can be and you can feel it when you are just watching him work with people in class,” sophomore George Colligan said.

Hackler strives for his students to learn about themselves and gain skills that will help in all aspects of life.

“I definitely think that all of the skills that we learn in class are tremendously helpful when dealing with personal relationships,” Colligan said.

Colligan thinks it is inspiring to see Hackler perform at the Undermain. He is able to see Hackler’s lessons in action.

“My teaching is to help you see all the possibilities there inside of you, for you to challenge what I say and in challenging that for us to have real dialogue of what’s possible and what is possible in you,” Hackler said.

If Hackler did not work in the theatre industry, he believes he would be a psychologist. However, he would teach while he practiced.

Currently, Hackler is acting in the Undermain’s production of “We are Proud to Present a Presentation…” Also, he is in the process of writing a new play.

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