Diana Theodores BA, MFA, Ph.D

Cranfield School of Management

Visit Cranfield School of Management's main website
The Praxis Centre

The Praxis Centre at Cranfield School of Management

Diana Theodores BA, MFA, Ph.D

Visiting Programme Leader



Confident and Creative Presentation 
Walking Your Talk Impact Performance
Praxis Customised Programmes 
What are you an expert in?
The whole idea of `expert` and `expertise` fills me with unease and immediately makes me feel like a charlatan. I am experienced in motivating people; experienced in enabling people to maximise their performance, to connect with their bodies, their passions, their creative core and their natural strengths.
I am a very experienced `asker`of questions; in making and bringing performances to life.
What is it you are currently thinking about/care about in the world of work?
 I am always fascinated with the performer-audience transaction, in all its guises and contexts. I grew up in New York, on a steady diet of great, history-making performances, artists, master classes and ground-breaking schools of thinking and `movements` in the arts. 
Several things always stay with me in relation to these formative years. One is the explicit, but elusive, thrill of witnessing performances that you know you will never forget. These are the performances that you know in the moment of experiencing, that you will see the world differently, forever; that every strand of you is alive and inspired and resonating with passion, intellect and sensuousness. These performances combine great `invisible` technique, communication with an audience and some kind of extraordinary, rigorous vulnerability on the part of the performer(s). Whatever `it` is, inspirational performances make you jump up from your seat and cheer. You have experienced a new key in your life song. You feel `more` in every way: more hope; more resolved; more motivated; more alive and more faith in mankind.
I also find the arena of `rehearsals` extraordinary. This is a place where the really exciting, profound, and poignant things go on - where performers explore, `fail` in ways that are magnificent and which lead to the heart of the work. Likewise, I am fascinated with the process of brainstorming, think tanks and intensive collaborations. In these creative and consuming arenas, anything is possible.
I am also interested in the productive and lucrative exchanges of values that could be forged between the arts and business, the creative processes that are at work in these worlds, and the ways in which artists and innovative leaders dont just `push the envelopes`, but create the envelopes as well.
I think about how I `walk my talk`, in how my values are reflected in my work and in the kinds of conversations and relationships I have: the notion of `fierce conversations` - the idea that the quality of relationships is located within in the quality of each conversation.
What would you like to see change in organisations?
A change of heart; an honouring of masculine and feminine values in balance; a change of scale (small is beautiful); a greater sense of ownership for the workforce; an enabling of peoples` creativity; investment in social capital and well being; the environment; friendly and visionary thinking.
What is special about Praxis?
It is helping to shift the paradigm of `fear, time and bottom line` in business to one of trust, imagination and a call for more sustainable forms of inner leadership.
Why does the programme you teach at Praxis matter in business?
Social responsibility begins with ourselves - having connected, aware bodies turning up and tuning in, allowing ourselves and enabling each other to shine. The quality of our attention influences all our interactions. 
When we are fully present and receptive, we connect to ourselves and to others with compassion, humanity and creativity. The creative and social processes from theatre and performance that I use as a coach and facilitator, help people to tune in to this and can have a profound impact on personal growth and the motivational health of businesses.
How would you describe your teaching style?
I eloquently coax, nudge, push, pull, seduce, trick, argue, laugh, wrestle, grapple, feed, fuel, persuade, inspire, cheer, exhaust, motivate, intimidate and entertain.
Education and Qualifications
BA (Hons) Dance & Anthropology, Bennington College, Vermont, USA 
MA Fine Arts/Dance, York University, Toronto, Canada
PhDDrama Studies,
Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
Work Experience
Choreographer and Director at venues that include:
The Abbey Theatre, Gate Theatre, Royal Court, Samuel Beckett Centre.
Director of Movement Studies, Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College, Dublin.
Reader in Theatre and Research Fellow at Dartington College of Arts, Dartington Hall,
Partner in a consulting company that combines theatre with management.
Published author and journalist in the arts.
Fiction writing, sailing, personal development and coaching

Course director for:

E-mail: m.k.mills@cranfield.ac.uk

View Publications Database

Visit the Cranfield Faculty Bookshop

home about mba msc doctorates executive development research information contact us