Hala Baki

Theatre Lecturer


  • Office: Bldg. 45, Rm. 209
  • Phone: 805-756-6436
  • Email:
  • Pronouns: she, her, hers

About Hala Baki

Hala Baki (she/her) is a Lecturer in the Theatre and Dance Department at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. She holds a PhD in Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies with an Interdisciplinary Emphasis in Global Studies from UC Santa Barbara as well as an MA in Theater from CSU Northridge. Her research explores how Arab American theater's relations to conditions of production influence its support structures and sustainability. Her scholarship weaves theories of the public sphere, diaspora, social systems, institutions, and performance economies. She has presented her work at IFTR, ASTR, and ATHE. She has published in Modern Drama, Theatre Journal, Theatre Topics, Asian Theatre Journal and the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History. She has co-edited the anthology The Vagrant Trilogy: Three Plays by Mona Mansour (Bloomsbury, 2022) and authored a chapter in the forthcoming volume Arabs, Politics, and Performance (Routledge). She is also a stage director and dramaturg whose recent credits include Mona Mansour's unseen (Oregon Shakespeare Festival 2022), the original ensemble play Writer's Block (2021), Kareem Fahmy’s American Fast (2021), and Yussef El Guindi’s Cha-Cha (2020).


Courses Taught at Cal Poly:

  • TH 210: Introduction to Theater
  • TH 227: Theater History I
  • TH 305: Topics in Diversity on the American Stage 
    • Race, Gender, and Performance
    • MENA American Theater
  • TH 345: Mainstage Rehearsal and Performance
  • TH 390: Global Theatre and Performance 
    • Drama of the Arab World
    • Modern African Theater
    • World Theater Survey


  • Baki, Hala. “Discourse and Process in Arab American Theater.” Arabs, Politics, and Performance, edited by Roaa Ali, Samer Al-Saber, and George Potter, Routledge, forthcoming.

  • Baki, Hala. “Dispute in the Diaspora: Metaphor and Contradictions in Arab American Drama.” Modern Drama, forthcoming.

  • Baki, Hala. "Arab American Theater." Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History.  September 20, 2023. Oxford University Press. 

  • Baki, Hala and Michael Malek Najjar (eds.). The Vagrant Trilogy: Three Plays by Mona Mansour. Methuen Drama, Bloomsbury, 2022.

  • Baki, Hala. Book Review Middle Eastern American Theatre: Communities Cultures and Artists, by Michael Malek Najjar. Modern Drama vol 65, no. 3, 2022, 459-462.

  • Baki, Hala. Performance Review of This is Who I Am, by Amir Nizar Zuabi. Theatre Journal,  vol 73, no. 3, 2021, pp. 414-416.

  • Baki, Hala. Book Review of Theatre in the Middle East: Between Performance and Politics, ed. Babak Rahimi. Asian Theatre Journal, vol 38, no. 2, 2021, pp. 601-603.

  • Esfandiary, Rana, et al. "2020 ATHE Conference Middle Eastern Theatre Focus Group Roundtable: Pedagogy and Absence." Theatre Topics, vol. 31, no.1, 2021, pp. 9-16.

  • Baki, Hala. Performance Review of Scenes From 71* Years, by Hannah Khalil. Theatre Journal, vol. 72 no. 2, 2020, p. 226-228.

  • Baki, Hala. Book Review of Theatre and Islam, by Marvin Carlson.  Asian Theatre Journal, vol. 37, no. 2, 2020, pp. 587-590. 

  • Baki, Hala. “Defending the Dream: Sa’adallah Wannous’s Legacy for Arab Theater.” Al-Jadid, vol. 24, no. 78, 2020, pp. 26-27.

  • Baki, Hala, Joyelle Ball, Yasmine Jahanmir, and Haddy Kreie. "Mind Readers: Imagining Research-led Practice in Doctoral Education." Theatre Topics, vol. 29 no. 2, 2019, pp. 127-139.

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