Area of Focus: Theatre
William Grange teaches courses in theatre history, dramatic analysis, and drama theory. He is the author of twelve books, the most recent of which is “The Business of American Theatre,” published by Routledge in the United Kingdom. He has also published numerous essays, book chapters, journal articles, reviews, and encyclopedia entries–most of which are available for download at the UNL Digital Commons. You may also visit his Amazon web page to view his books and even order copies–which he highly recommends. Dr. Grange has received significant teaching and research appointments abroad, including Guest Professor for American Film and Drama at the University of Heidelberg in Germany, the Distinguished Chair in Humanities and Cultural Studies at the University of Vienna, and a Fulbright Professorship at the University of Cologne in Germany. In both Cologne and Vienna he taught courses in German; at the University of Nebraska he has served as an endowed Hixson-Lied Professor, though his teaching is almost exclusively in English. After serving three successive terms in the University of Nebraska’s Faculty Senate, he now serves at his colleagues’ request as Chairman of the Carson School’s Graduate Committee.
Dr. Grange has received several research fellowships from the German Academic Exchange Service, the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at the University of Texas, the National Endowment for the Humanities in Washington, D.C., the Dorot Foundation in Providence, Rhode Island, the Mellon Foundation in New York City, the International Institute of Education, the Hixson-Lied Trust Endowment, the Jane Harrison Lyman Research Trust Fund, and several others. His research efforts have twice earned him the University of Nebraska Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Research in the Humanities. Nebraska students and the University parents’ organization have awarded him distinctions of teaching merit on three different occasions at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.
An Equity actor for over four decades, the Actors’ Fund on New York cited Dr. Grange in 2014 for meritorious service to the American acting profession. He has played leading roles in several productions, including Caldwell B. Cladwell in the award-winning musical “Urinetown,” Prof. Henry Higgins in “My Fair Lady” with Gwynne Geyer, Capt. von Trapp in “The Sound of Music” with Lindsey Alley, El Gallo in “The Fantasticks!” and the carnival owner Schlegel in “Carnival!” and was a member of the original Light Opera of Manhattan company in New York, appearing in numerous Gilbert and Sullivan productions while still a graduate student at Columbia University. He was also a founding member of the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, playing Polonius in “Hamlet,” Duncan in “Macbeth,” Cleante in “Tartuffe,” Amiens in “As You Like It,” Leonato in “Much Ado About Nothing,” and Balthasar in “Comedy of Errors.” With student film directors in the Johnny Carson School he has played several oddball characters in thesis films. They range from despondent police detectives to murderous CIA agents, philosophical fishermen, and most recently the boss of a criminal syndicate. He also has appeared in several local commercials–and once as a semi-transparent ghost in a national ad for LI-COR Biosciences, Inc.