Roxanne Schroeder-Arce

Professor. Scholar. Playwright. Director.

Roxanne Schroeder-Arce is a faculty member at the University of Texas Department of Theatre and Dance. Aside from her teaching, Professor Schroeder-Arce is a scholar, playwright and director.

Select Recent Publications


Toward Culturally Responsive Artistry:
Implications for Institutions, Artists, Educators and Audiences

In 2012, the Austin Independent School District reported that over 60 percent of its students identified as Hispanic. However, the number of theatrical offerings for children including Latino stories or Latino/a characters on Austin stages is staggeringly disproportionate to the number of Latino children living in the community. Mariachi Girl is a new bilingual Spanish/English musical for child audiences. This paper articulates and analyzes research findings from surveys collected from children, teachers, and care givers who saw the production. The paper introduces the term culturally responsive artistry and offers new perspectives and suggestions on how arts institutions and theater educators can form lasting relationships with minority communities.

Published: IJEA, 2014

Crawling with Monsters:
Theatre for Social Change on the Mexico/US Border

This analysis of Crawling with Monsters focuses on how student theatre artists employ their art form to highlight critical social challenges in their community along the US/Mexico border. This recently devised play has been performed several times in the US and is in response to the violence that Mexican youth along the border are beginning to consider normal. The author examines the devising process, the script and production as a piece of culturally responsive theatre.

Published: Gestos, 2014.

Juntos Podemos: Devising Theater as Community-Based Pedagogy

In this Workhop Reflection, Roxanne Schroeder-Arce illustrates and recounts a devising workshop that she and two University of Texas Pan American (UTPA) professors facilitated with 15 students from UTPA and UT Austin during the conference. During the workshop, the students and faculty devised a performance called Juntos Podemos. Schroeder-Arce chronicles the background and goals of workshop, the devising process and how the workshop reflected the themes of the conference. Then, she paints a picture of the final performance. Finally, she includes her own reflections as well as those of the student participants from both UTPA and UT Austin.

Published: Rio Bravo: A Journal of the Borderlands Volume 23, Issue 1 (spring 2014).

Go (Home), Diego, Go!: Latino Identities
in Relation to Children and “National Identity” in the United States

The United States is erupting over issues surrounding immigration and acculturation. Those who are neither “White” nor native English-speaking in the US are lumped into a category of “other”. Young “others” are caught in this war and are forced to consider how they fit into the so-called National Identity. This marginalization is a battle for all who are “other” in the US, and even more stupefying for children. Given the national tension and fear regarding immigration leading to the 2006 billion dollar Congress authorization of an illegal-immigrant-protection fence along the US-Mexico border, this paper examines the goals and outcomes of theatrical productions which celebrate bilingualism and multiculturalism. Through an analysis of Go, Diego, Go Live! and other recently staged Nickelodeon television shows featuring “other” child characters, the paper further explores questions such as: How does a country reconcile its hostility toward immigration with its desire to capitalize on marketing Latino cartoon characters to children?

Published: Youth Theatre Journal. Vol. 27, Issue 1, 2013. Pages 63-73


Representations of Latino/as in Musical Theatre and Theatre for Young Audiences

This book chapter chronicles the growth in Latino Musical Theatre (LMT) and Latino Theatre for Young Audiences (LTYA) in the areas of popularity, authenticity and sophistication.  Referencing plays and musicals such as West Side Story, In the Heights, El Gatos Sin Amigos and Barrio Girl, Schroeder-Arce makes connections between LTYA and LMT in the United States.

Published: Latinos and American Popular Culture. Patricia Montilla, ed. ABC-CLIO Praeger. 2013.

On Becoming a Cultural Chameleon: Devising with Diverse Groups of Young People

Different species of chameleons change color for a variety of reasons, including social signaling, in response to temperature variations and in order to camouflage themselves. As a teaching artist, Schroeder-Arce sees herself as a cultural chameleon, adapting in different places and spaces in order to do her work effectively. To examine the fusion of teacher and artist requires a look at the demands of both roles and the special qualities demanded of the teaching artist. Throughout this case study, Schroeder-Arce reflects on her work as a teaching artist at ZUMIX, a nonprofit youth organization in East Boston, Massachusetts, where in the summer of 2009 she worked with middle school students to devise a piece of theatre called The Sandman’s Sleepless Dream. This paper chronicles the devising process in this specific context, articulating challenges she faced, such as fostering community with a diverse group, navigating power dynamics while crafting a piece of devised theatre, assuring that all voices and languages were valued. and confronting assumptions of everyone in the room, including her own.


 Published: Hybrid Lives of Teaching Artists in Dance and Theatre Arts: A Critical Reader. Anderson, Mary Elizabeth and Doug Risner, Ed. Cambria Press. 2014.



For a full list of Roxanne's publications, see her Curriculum Vitae



Copyright © Roxanne Schroeder-Arce 2014. All rights reserved.