Sara Romersberger


Associate Professor





Profile in American Theatre Magazine

Sara Romersberger is a movement specialist and tenured Associate Professor of Theatre who incorporates dance, stage combat and Lecoq international movement theatre training to create and direct movement, clowning and fight choreography for text-based and movement theatre and opera, nationally and internationally.

Romersberger has won numerous awards, grants and accolades, including a Leon Rabin Award for Special Recognition for Outstanding Choreography for her work on The Wrestling Season at Dallas Children’s Theatre in 2005 and a Meadows Foundation Grant to produce and choreograph two productions of La Discreta Enamorada with Spanish director Gustavo Tambascio in 2006.

Nationally, Romersberger was president of the Association for Theatre Movement Educators from 2006 to 2008, co-creator and teacher for M.O.V.E. (Movement Observation Vision Experimentation) in Phoenix, Ariz., and has taught weeklong workshops at Boston University, the University of South Carolina, National Theatre of the Deaf and at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, among other locations.

International production credits include choreography and assistant direction for the opera Hangman, Hangman!/The Town of Greed, which had its world premiere at Teatro de la Zarzuela, Madrid, Spain in September 2007 and was subsequently performed in Barcelona with a new cast at Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, Spain, November 2007.

Prior to coming to SMU in 1998, Romersberger held full-time faculty positions at Illinois Wesleyan University (tenured 1988), West Virginia University and Elon College, N.C.

With strong roots in modern dance and jazz, Romersberger has choreographed over 60university and professional musical theatre productions. She has directed and performed her own brand of movement theatre in off-Broadway productions in New York at The Mint Theatre (Jackson Pollock: In The Painting) and Primary Stages (Hanna: A Run-On Odyssey) and has danced with New York-based companies Julie Maloney Dance Company and Wendy Osserman Dance.

Her extensive knowledge and production experience in the clowns of Shakespeare, the Commedia Dell’Arte and physical theatre have garnered her invitations to teach abroad in Amsterdam, Netherlands; Athens, Greece; and Pretoria, South Africa.

She presently is writing a book, Wise Enough to Play the Fool: Playing the Clowns of Shakespeare.


B.S. in Theatre Education, Illinois State University

M.A. in Dance, University of Illinois; Certificate École Internationale De Théâtre Jacques Lecoq, Paris, France.

Recent Work

At SMU, directed: we, the invisibles, Broadway Anthems, You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Trouble in Tahiti; Peer Gynt ; The Children’s Hour; Twelfth Night; Anything Goes; and The Three Cuckolds. Designed movement and dance and/or fight choreography for dozens of Meadows Theatre and Opera productions. 

Professionally in Dallas: directed A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas and she created or coached movement, dance, clowning and/or fight choreography for 20 productions at Shakespeare Festival of Dalla s as well as multiple additional movement credits at The Dallas Theater Center; the Undermain Theatre; Theatre Three; WaterTower Theatre; Contemporary Theatre of Dallas and more.

Book Chapters

  • “Festina Lente and Sprezzatura in Action: Unlikely Sources of Physical Dramaturgy in Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost and As You Like It”. PHYSICAL DRAMATURGY Perspectives from the Field,. Routledge: Oxon, UK and New York, NY
  • “Shakespeare’s Clown/ Zanni Connection: Hybridizing Commedia’s Zanni”. The Routledge Companion to Commedia Dell'Arte, Routledge: Oxon, UK and New York, NY, 2015
  • “Lecoq's Clown and its Application to Playing Shakespeare's clowns” The Routledge Companion to Jacques Lecoq, Routledge: Oxon, UK and New York, NY, 2016

Course list

B.F.A. and M.F.A. professional actor training: Lecoq-based movement classes including placement, acrobatics, neutral and character mask, masks of the Commedia Dell' Arte, European clown as well as historical movement styles and dances (Renaissance and Restoration), dance of the 20th century and stage combat.  
Master of Liberal Studies program:  “An Introduction to Graduate Liberal Studies, Regarding Life: Experiencing Theatre as a window into the Human Experience”, “Special Topics in Humanities: Community Development and Innovation through the Arts”, “On Being Funny: Physical Comedy and Beyond. ”  
Sara Romersberger