Douglas Eacho

Assistant Professor


Douglas Eacho is a performance historian and theorist with a PhD from Stanford University’s Department in Theatre and Performance Studies. His work narrates the encounters between theatrical performance and emerging modern media, especially digital computation, within the history of global capital and its attendant imaginaries. This research encompasses both the modernist lineage conventionally explored by performance and media theory and the material histories of technical theatre and design. His graduate courses have introduced students to Marxist performance theory and other approaches to understanding culture alongside political economy. 

His book project, Command Performance: Theatre, the Automatic, and the Limits of Capital, discusses attempts to automate the production of live performance. Cases include surrealist automatism, fascist scenography, mid-century cybernetics, early computer-choreographed dance, and the introduction of computation to theatrical light and sound control. The book culminates in the recent explosion of interest in algorithmic or “AI” generation, arguing that this moment can be read not as the beginning of a new era but as the final aesthetic expression of a long-term economic cyclical turn towards stagnation. Prof. Eacho also explores these issues as the Assistant Director, Academic of the BMO Lab in Creative Research in the Arts, Performance, Emerging Technologies, and AI. 

Articles have been published in Theatre Journal, Theatre Research International, and Theatre & Performance Design, with review essays in several further venues. With Catie Cuan and Sydney Skybetter he is co-editing a forthcoming special issue of TDR, “Still Exhausted,” on digital performance and labour.


Centennial Award for Graduate Teaching, Stanford University, 2019


PhD, Stanford University
BA, Brown University