German director and producer (1893-1966), worked closely with Bertolt Brecht and coined the term "epic theatre" to describe what he, Brecht and other angry Germans were doing after World War I. During that time of social upheaval and unrest, he and the Expressionists tried to create a form of proletarian drama to radicalize the public; to get them to get up and do something rather than see their government and their lives crumble around them. Unfortunately, the public ignored his suggestions and went with Hitler instead, so Piscator left Germany in 1933 and ended up teaching at the New School from 1939 to 1951, helping to make the theatre program there the bloated, self-important thing it is today. He got kicked out for taking up the Tishman Auditorium too much of the time and ended up collaborating with Walter Groprius, father of the Bauhaus architectural movement, on the Total Theatre. The Total Theatre was a Bauhaus masterwork and could be used as an arena-style theatre, a proscenium stage or a thrust stage; it was utilitarian and symbolic of all sorts of societal issues; but acoustically, it blew. Ah, well. Piscator started many theatrical practices that are still in wide use today, such as projecting films onto the stage to create photographic backdrops.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.