Critics' Speakers Bureau

It is the purpose of the Cleveland Critics Circle's Speakers Bureau to provide community organizations and educational institutions experts to present speeches and workshops regarding the theater.  Speakers are independent contractors, who do not represent the Cleveland Critics Circle, but are members of the group.  Each presenter has listed how the person can be contacted to negotiate topics, dates and fees.

DR. BOB ABELMAN is an award-winning theatre critic, arts journalism Fellow with the National Endowment for the Arts, and Distinguished Professor at Cleveland State University.   He is co-author of Refereeing the Muses: A Theatre Criticism & Arts Journalism Primer (Peter Lang Publishing) and speaks on the current state of and opportunities in arts and entertainment journalism.  For the past 30 years his scholarship has focused on the cognitive psychology of storytelling and speaks on how children learn to comprehend stories and develop critical thinking skills that distinguish reality from fantasy and educational fare from entertainment.  He has also served as a program consultant and script doctor for numerous children's television programs.  Contact him at 216-687-4624. 

DR. ROY BERKO, a long time educator, theater critic, actor, director, producer, model and media performer, he is the recipient of eight national teaching awards, including being named Outstanding Educator in America.  He is the author of 27 books.  His topics include:  "You, The Theater Critic," "Theater Represents the Era From Which It Comes," and "Jewish and Yiddish Theater."  His blog is   Contact him at 440-720-0606 or

CHRISTINE HOWEY, in addition to being an award-winning theater critic, is a former stage actor and director. She is also an accomplished public speaker, having presented numerous speeches to a variety of groups on topics ranging from the impact of change on society to resume writing. Her topic, ""The Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name: Actors + Audiences," is about the intimate connection between performers and those who attend the shows. Using examples from theater--in Cleveland and elsewhere--Christine paints an informative and amusing portrait of this unique "love affair." Her blog is Contact her at

ART THOMAS, a critic for WestLife since 1981, is available to groups. His topic is "American Theater from Broadway to Cleveland--A Backstage View." Contact him at 216 228-0022 or at