Texas Tech University

Innovation Hub

Performance Innovation
Speaker Series


We'll be back with more dynamic speaking events soon!

The Performance Innovation Speaker Series is dedicated to advancing West Texas by showcasing innovation through research impact, creative performance, and entrepreneurship. In 2019, three dynamic keynote speakers were been invited to share how they have advanced their collective thinking of ideas to societal impact! 


See all of our 2019 Speakers

Robert Kaplowitz
November 2019

Robert Kaplowitz seen here at the Tony Awards holding one of his many awards.Tony Award Winning Sound Designer & Composer and Instructor at Princeton University's Lewis Center for the Arts.

Robert Kaplowitz has been lucky enough to spend the last 21 years composing and designing sound. He has been honored with both a Tony for Best Sound Design of A Musical (2009-10, Fela!) and an OBIE for Sustained Excellence in Sound Design (2006-7 Season), among a number of other awards and nominations.

His professional credits include over 300 productions — he has also been a resident designer/dramaturg for more than a hundred new play workshops. As a composer, his work has been heard in dance, theater, and museums; as a designer, he has had the privilege of traveling the world and working with some of theater's greatest artists.

Some favorite plays for which he has written music include John Beluso's The Poor Itch; Lemon Anderson's County Of Kings; Tracy Scott Wilson's The Story at the Public; Kia Corthron's Light, Raise the Roof ; Amy Herzog's Belleville at NYTW; Charles Fuller's Zooman and the Sign; Regina Taylor's stop. reset at the Signature; Brian Osborne's entirely unorthodox tour of The Word; Chloe Moss's This Wide Night (Naked Angels); Adam Bock's The Thugs (SoHo Rep); David Adjmi's Stunning (LCT 3); Sebastienne Mundheim's adaptation of A Child's Christmas In Wales at the Lantern (a Barrymore nominee for outstanding music); and many of Neil LaBute's premieres.

Some of the great works of theater and dance he's designed include Bill T. Jones and Jim Lewis's Fela! (Broadway, the National Theatre in London, EKO Center in Lagos); Lucidity Suitcase's Red Eye to Havre de Grace (Live Arts/NYTW/Emerson/Walker/etc); the Art Spiegelman/Pilobolus collaboration Hapless Hooligan; Michael Friedman and Itamar Moses's Fortress of Solitude (Public, Dallas Theater Center); a collaboration with Bobby McFerrin on Athol Fugard's My Children! My Africa! at the Signature; and the Aaron Cromie/Mary Tuomonan collaboration The Body Lautrec, which was first seen at the O'Neill Puppetry Conference in the summer of 2014.

He has also designed and/or composed for MTC, Mabou Mines, 2nd Stage, LAByrinth, Primary Stages, The Vineyard, The Women's Project, Playwrights Horizons, Intar, The Alley, the Guthrie, PS 122, and nearly every 99 seat-and-smaller theater in NYC. He relocated to Philadelphia in 2010, and while he continues to work in NYC, he now has pleasure of working in his new hometown with companies like Pig Iron, The Arden, Interact, The Wilma, Azuka, PTC, PLTC, Elastic, the Lantern, and the Walnut Street. He was the resident sound designer for the O'Neill Playwrights Conference from 2000 through 2004, has twice been a resident artist at Sundance, and has spent the past 5 summers helping PlayPenn discover how to utilize the design process in a playwrighting festival environment.

He currently teaches at Princeton University and runs an annual Masterclass in sound design at the Kennedy Center's American College Theater Festival. He is a member of the Philadelphia Musical Theater writing initiative, and has received a grant from the Independence Foundation to further his work in finding a means of translating rock music to the page without losing its freedom and live quality.


Brian Harris, CEO of MedRythms, Inc. 
January 2019 

A professional photo of Brian Harris, CEO of Medrhythms, Inc.Brian is a passionate and motivated leader and entrepreneur who strives to make the world a better place by helping others. He has demonstrated these qualities by building a world-class digital therapeutics company and developing the Arts and Neuroscience Group at the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine.

As one of only 250 individuals in the world with advanced training in the clinical application of music, Brian is equipped with the domain expertise needed to help MedRhythms thrive. Brian enjoys meeting challenges head-on and thinking critically about the ways in which MedRhythms can meet an unmet need in healthcare.

Over the years, Brian has been invited to speak around the world at dozens of venues, including the following: The American Academy of Neurological Surgeons, The American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, Harvard Medical School, the Alpert Medical School at Brown University, Stanford Medical Center, HealthXL in Dublin, and the Neurology Foundation in India. His work and that of MedRhythms has been featured in Forbes, The Huffington Post, CNBC, NPR and Chronicle Boston. Brian was recently named as one of "40 Under 40 Healthcare Innovators" by MedTech Boston. Brian enjoys connecting with and learning from like-minded people and anyone who is passionate about making a difference in the world.


Sherwin Greenblatt 
April 2019

Headshot of Sherwin Greenblatt, a member of the Bose Corporation Board of Directors and a long-time supporter of start-ups and ingenuity.Greenblatt, retired from Bose Corporation, was its first employee and for 15 years served as its President. He is currently a member of its Board of Directors. He is also a Trustee at the Olin College of Engineering.

Sherwin Greenblatt volunteers his time as Director of the MIT Venture Mentoring Service. From 2005 to 2007, Greenblatt served as the executive vice president and treasurer of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and from 2008-2009 he was the Interim CEO of the MIT Alumni Association.

He has been a member of the Corporation of the Draper Laboratories, Director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, and he regularly advises start-up companies.

Mr. Greenblatt holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering from MIT.

Taysha Williams
Managing Director

Past Events