Robert Lawson

Robert Lawson

MFA Writing for Stage and Screen Faculty


Robert Lawson is a playwright, director, composer, screenwriter & visual artist. 

Film and television work includes --

  • Co-author (with director Jonathan Glatzer), co-producer, 2nd Unit Director and acting coach (Hilary Duff) for What Goes Up – a feature film also starring Steve Coogan, Molly Shannon, Josh Peck, Max Hoffman and Olivia Thirlby (national release)
  • Co-author (with Glatzer) of Tyler’s Gap, a television project produced by Touchstone/ABC & Fox Television - Rob Bowman, director; David Duchovney, Executive Producer
  • Commission by NGN Productions (Vancouver) for feature screenplay Dancing in the Dark
  • King Callow, commission with J. Glatzer by Starboard Entertainment (LA)

He is currently working with actor Sam Huntington on developing a series of short films based on Lawson’s collection of short fiction Geometric Cemetery : tales of Nicholas Raithe, as well as a short film based on a feature screenplay of his, a horror story entitled The Clearing.

He is the author & composer of dozens of theater works, a number of which are published by Playscripts, Inc. and are regularly produced across the U.S., Europe and Asia.  His Hiroshima : crucible of light was most recently produced in Singapore in Nov. 2014.  Other works include --

  • Play commission (by Marlin Fitzwater) Empires Fall concerning the fall of Communism and the relationship between George H. W. Bush & Mikhail Gorbachev (staged reading at Ford’s Theater, D.C. and subsequently at the Bush Presidential Library - 2011/2013)
  • everything is going to have to be put back at the Tre Stage (LA)
  • Hiroshima: crucible of light produced by Untitled Theater Co. at Walkerspace (NYC)
  • Tabula Rasa, a music/theater piece about autism at the Neuro Fest (NYC)
  • Pandora’s Box : a vaudeville at the Houseman Studio Theater (NYC).
  • The Architecture of Sight (script) produced by the Chocolate Factory, NYC
  • but the rain is full of ghosts (script, score, direction) produced by KC/ACTF at the Kennedy Center, D.C.

Texts have also appeared in American Writing, Poems & Plays and The Northern New England Review.  He is the recipient of a Meet the Composer grant for his work on Leonardo’s Tank (Andy’s Summer Playhouse, NH - for which he was artistic director 1995-2007).  He is developing a new performance work for the fall of 2015 for Franklin Pierce University (where he is on faculty) entitled the aluminum room for which he is creating the design, text, music and will be directing.

Since 2010, he has created new site specific multi-media performance works as part of his Site Project initiative including The Interpretation of Dreams, staged in Strefi Park and a few rooftops (Athens); Everyone Knows Who Bombed the Bank staged at the Hellenic American Union (Athens); and Artifacts, a collective project staged in the salon at  Monash University and the abandoned Calamai Textile Mill (Prato, Italy).

In 2002, he embarked on an open ended series of site-specific and site-responsive installations under the rubric of Chapels -- contemplative spaces that revolve around a person, idea, or concept.  The inaugural work was a multi-room art/science project based on the Camera Obscura that ran for two years (NH).  His four-part ‘Cabinet of Wonder’ investigating real and imagined artifacts entitled Recently Discovered : use unknown was installed in 2004 (also NH).  The third Chapel was a multi-media installation entitled Memorial (ghost/embers) and was created to commemorate the 25th anniversary of World AIDS Day.  Originally conceived for installation in an abandoned elevator shaft at the Boston Center for the Arts, Memorial was subsequently installed at Franklin Pierce Univ. (where he is on faculty), at the Fitchburg Art Museum (MA) and at the Thorne-Sagendorph Gallery in Keene, NH.   He is currently at work on the fourth in the series : Our Lady of the Sorrows, a single room, multi-part multi-media riff on the Stations of the Cross and includes an altarpiece and 11 other distinct icons and ‘fount’.  Four elements of the work will be exhibited at the Amherst Gallery in Manchester (NH) this fall as part of the faculty show for the New Hampshire Institute of Art.

The Chronicle of Higher Education published a profile on him and his work in 2010, as did the Austrian periodical Freigeist - a publication of the Donau Universität in Krems, Austria, where he conducts an ongoing series of workshops in Narrative Strategies, Framing & Abstraction using digital media for the School of Telecommunications, Information and Media.  He is also on faculty at the New Hampshire Institute of Art MFA program Writing for Stage and Screen, and a visiting scholar at Beacon College (FL).

He is a member of the Writers’ Guild (WGA/East), ASCAP, SAG, AEA, AFTRA and the Dramatists Guild.