Jenny Spencer

Jenny Spencer is an Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She founded, and for 10 years, co-directed the UMASS Edinburgh Fringe Theatre summer abroad honors program. Her “Alternative Theatres” student course is still successfully running in partnership with the University of Mexico.

Jenny taught and published in the area of modern and contemporary performance for over 30 years. In addition to numerous articles and reviews, she is the author of Dramatic Strategies in the Plays of Edward Bond (Cambridge U Press), editor of Staging Resistance: Essays on Political Theatre (U Michigan Press) and most recently, Political and Protest Theatre after 9/11: Patriotic Dissent (Routledge). During her career, she served as the editor for the academic journal Theatre Topics, as Chair of the English department, as MSP Faculty Union President, and as director for the Five College Faculty Seminar on Performance Studies. She has travelled to the Edinburgh Fringe Theatre Festival as a researcher, teacher, and tourist for over 15 years.

Jenny’s job is to guide you through thousands of performance options to maximize your time at the festival. 


We will be joined in 2020 by Lori Friedman, a curator and arts administrator specializing in modern and contemporary art.  Lori has twice experienced the Fringe Festival with Jenny, and is excited about returning for a third season as an assistant to the program. Lori is also the sole proprietor of Lori Friedman Arts Management, a consulting business providing coaching, strategic planning and curating. She holds a BA in Art History from the University of California, Berkeley; is a graduate of the Sotheby’s Works of Art Course in London, and received her MBA from UMASS Amherst.  Feel free to contact her about the program at


Jenny Spencer:

Phone/text: 413-221-8802

Summer address (until Oct. 15):  43 Fearing Street, Amherst, MA 01002

Winter address (until May 30): 1713 Kilruss Dr., Venice FL 34292