Tuesday, March 30, 2021, 4pm via Zoom
Sunny Stalter-Pace will discuss her recent biography of vaudevillian Gertrude Hoffmann, whose scrapbooks and diaries are held by Special Collections & Archives at the ZSR Library. Gertrude Hoffmann made her name in the early twentieth century as an imitator, copying highbrow performances from Europe and popularizing them for a broader American audience. Her life intersected with those of central figures in twentieth-century popular culture and dance, including Florenz Ziegfeld, George M. Cohan, Isadora Duncan, and Ruth St. Denis. Dr. Stalter-Pace will share information about Hoffmann’s long and varied career on the stage, along with behind-the-scenes anecdotes about what it feels like to assemble the story of someone else’s life.
Sunny Stalter-Pace, Hargis Associate Professor of American Literature at Auburn University, received her PhD from Rutgers University and her BA from Loyola University Chicago. She specializes in the interdisciplinary study of American popular performance, literature, and urban space. She has published articles on American theatre in Journal of American Drama and Theatre, Theatre Symposium, and Transfers Interdisciplinary Journal of Mobility Studies. Imitation Artist: Gertrude Hoffmann’s Life in Vaudeville and Dance (Northwestern University Press, 2020), is her most recent monograph.