Rubén Polendo is a director and playwright focused on different traditions of the world stage. He is the founder of the New York-based Theater Mitu, which researches world theater performance traditions and incorporates them into performances of original and established works. His own research and teaching interests emphasize "whole theater," the rigorous exploration of the visual, aural, emotional, intellectual and spiritual tenets of performance. In addition to his scholarly work, Polendo produces theatrical productions that bring these ideas to life. His recent productions include a radical take on Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman that incorporates the traditions of vaudeville, Japanese Noh and Butoh, puppetry and Balinese masks, and the original play The Shakespeare Project that blends Shakespearean language with performance traditions from Tibetan Buddhism, Okinawan Dance and others. The recipient of fellowships from the New York Shakespeare Festival, New York Theater Workshop, International Centre for Theatre Research, Watermill Center and Theatre du Soleil, Polendo was nominated with Theater Mitu for a prestigious Alpert Award. He has been an invited speaker at performance hubs around the world, including Lincoln Center in New York, the Salzburg Festival, the New York Prelude Festival, The Year of Grotowski Festival and the Center for International Theater Development. Polendo has taught lecture and performance courses at NYU in New York to undergraduate and graduate students since 2000. He has also taught courses at Juilliard and Bard College, both in New York, and at the University of California Los Angeles. Internationally he has taught and led artist training programs at Patravadi Theater (Thailand) and Visthar Center (India). At NYU Abu Dhabi he teaches lecture and performance courses on theater, a course on the traditions in Arabic theater and a course entitled, The Re-inventions of Love. Polendo has an MFA in directing from the UCLA School of Theater, an M.A. in non-Western theater from Lancaster University in the U.K., and a B.S. in Biochemistry from Trinity University in Texas.