Matt Omasta is a nationally recognized leader in drama and theatre arts education who has been honored with the Founders Award from the Educational Research Association; the Johnny Saldaña Outstanding Professor of Theatre Education Award, Lin Wright Special Recognition Award, and Research Award from the American Alliance for Theatre & Education (AATE); as well as Utah State University Caine College of the Arts' Teacher of the Year, Mentor of the Year, and Outstanding Undergraduate Research Mentor Awards.
Dr. Omasta currently serves as Associate Dean of the Caine College of the Arts, Professor of Theatre Arts, and director of USU’s B.F.A. programs in Theatre Education & Applied Theater. He teaches courses in drama/theatre pedagogy, theatre for young audiences, applied theatre, and theory history, literature, theory, and criticism. Dr. Omasta is an active leader in national organizations and has served on AATE’s Board of Directors, the American Society for Theatre Research’s Executive Committee, and as Chair of the American Educational Research Association (AERA)'s Arts & Learning Special Interest Group.
Dr. Omasta's recent publications include the books Play, Performance, and Identity (Routledge), Playwriting and Young Audiences (Intellect), Qualitative Research: Analyzing Life (2nd edition, Sage) as well as numerous articles in Research in Drama Education: The Journal of Applied Theatre & Performance, Youth Theatre Journal, Performance Matters, Theatre for Young Audiences Today, the International Journal of Education & the Arts, Arts Education Policy Review, the Journal of Learning Through the Arts, Cultural Studies ↔ Critical Methodologies, and Theatre Topics. He regularly presents at national and international venues including the American Alliance for Theatre & Education, the International Drama Educators Association, the American Society for Theatre Research, the International Drama in Education Research Institute, the American Educational Research Association, the International Theatre for Young Audiences Research Network, and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.
Dr. Omasta earned a Ph.D. in Theatre from Arizona State University, a M.A. in Theatre Education from Emerson College, and a B.A. in Drama from Ithaca College. He has taught at USU, Emerson, ASU, Providence College, and the University of Rhode Island, and worked with a variety of professional arts organizations including Imagination Stage, Trinity Repertory Company, Florida Studio Theatre, Arena Stage, and Walt Disney Entertainment.