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Lee Devin

Member since 1975

Lee Devin graduated from San Jose State College in 1958 and took his PhD (1967) at Indiana University. He taught at  Indiana (1958-62), the University of Virginia (1962-66), Vassar College (1966-70), and Swarthmore College (1970-2002). In 1970 he founded The Theatre at Swarthmore, which became in time the Department of Theater Studies. He retired from teaching in 2002. In 1975 be became a member of the artistic staff of the People’s Light and Theatre, acting, teaching acting, and doing dramaturgy. Over the years at People’s Light he made acting versions of these scripts: Summerfolk, from Gorky, with Margaret Wettlin; A Doll House, from Ibsen; Oedipus, acting version from Sophocles, with Abigail Adams; Alice; scenes and variations from Lewis Carroll; Celebration, a cycle of mystery plays; The Madwoman of Chaillot, from Giraudoux. He played a bunch of parts, from T. Lawrence Shannon, Malvolio, Benedick and Nat Miller to Judge Robedeaux and Canon Chasuble. He wrote program notes and did dramaturgy for shows too numerous to mention. Out in the great world, he wrote articles, chapters in books, plays, and librettos; he worked as a technical director, master electrician, production stage manager, and dramaturg; he acted and directed in the academy, and for movies and TV. He has a framed SAG residuals check in the amount of $0.01 to memorialize his brilliant movie career. With Rob Austin of the Harvard Business School he wrote Artful Making; What Managers Need to Know about How Artists Work, published in 2003. In 2005 it won LMDA’s Elliott Hayes Award for dramaturgy. It’s about using theatre techniques to do creative work in business: replacing restraint with release, compromise with collaboration, and industrial teams with knowledge work ensembles. He and Rob are at work on the next book: Reliable Innovation. They’ve also published articles in several business journals. He’s currently a Dramaturg at People’s Light, a Senior Research Scholar at Swarthmore College, a Senior Consultant for the Cutter Consortium Innovation Practice, and a Certified Scrum Master. He’s at work on several writing projects that interfere with his trout fishing, and cause him to neglect his grandchildren.