Matthew Yde began his professional life as an actor in Chicago. Including his four years of training at Illinois State University he was an actor for 22 years. In 1997 he co-founded Theo Ubique Theatre, which is still extant under the name Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre. In 2006 he began graduate work at Ohio State University, graduating in 2011 with a PhD in Theatre History, Literature, and Criticism. The title of his dissertation was The Utopian Imagination of George Bernard Shaw: Totalitarianism and the Seduction of the Superman. Retitled and with an added chapter, this work was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2013 as Bernard Shaw and Totalitarianism: Longing for Utopia. The book received rave reviews, one scholar saying it was “the most significant single-author study of Shaw written in the past decade” and another that it was a “major achievement, perhaps even a game changer for Shaw Studies… [it] reads like a novel, replete with tight prose, a riveting plot, and high stakes.” The book came out in a second edition in 2016, with a forward by Shaw scholar Lawrence Switzsky.
After moving to Albuquerque to teach theatre history and dramatic literature at the University of New Mexico, Matthew suddenly found his career at an unexpected end in 2015. His research into totalitarian societies and his conversion to Christianity in 2013 made him fundamentally incompatible with the culture of “higher education.” Although he misses teaching and misses his students, he considers this ultimately a blessing. “The humanities are dead and education has been transmuted into ideological brainwashing,” he says. “With powerful hegemonic pressure to conform tacitly put on teachers.” Besides his book on Shaw and totalitarianism he has published many book chapters and peer-reviewed articles in academic journals. However, when he started writing about Christianity, he found he could no longer get his work published; consequently, he has many unpublished articles as well as an unpublished book, The Theatre of Stephen Adly Guirgis: Drama as Gospel in a Post-Christian Age.
He is a drama critic and has published nearly 200 reviews in the Albuquerque Journal and also writes a monthly column reviewing books on Eastern Orthodox Christianity for Agape, the monthly newsletter of Saint George Orthodox Church. His play Mrs. Warren’s Profession 2.0 (an adaptation of Shaw’s play) was produced at Aux Dog Theatre in Albuquerque under his direction. He has also directed several other plays and staged readings. Actor and director; scholar, teacher and writer. He once said to someone that if he ever wrote a memoir, he might call it The Three Incarnations of Matthew Yde. “Oh yeah,” he said, “what’s the third incarnation?” “Podcaster,” Yde responded. “Or more accurately, host of my own show.”