Theatre professor publishes book

Dr. Robert Hubbard, professor of theatre at Northwestern College, has recently published a book, “Grace Notes: Stories of Surprise, Regret and Redemption.” It is available on

The book is a collection of autobiographical stories that can be performed as a series of 20–30 minute worship presentations or full-length plays. Hubbard has combined these pieces into three one-person shows and performed them at fringe festivals throughout the Midwest. He’s also performed shorter pieces from the series at college chapel programs, high schools and art centers.

“While the stories in the collection are all autobiographical, the book is not a memoir. It doesn’t attempt to cover most of my life,” says Hubbard. “All of the stories center on moments in which a flash of grace shines through the cracks of an otherwise broken situation. In this spirit, I start each chapter with a quotation from the Bible and with a corresponding quotation from a more contemporary artist/writer.”

Self-contained chapters describe events throughout Hubbard’s life, including his relationship with his alcoholic father and his unbridled joy during the Broncos’ Super Bowl victory.

“The book mainly focuses on answering questions I associate with coming of age,” says Hubbard, “such as, how did I become Christian? Why do the Denver Broncos mean so much to me? How do childhood friendships carry into adulthood?”

Hubbard decided to publish the stories after receiving numerous requests from audience members to purchase a copy of his scripts following performances at theatre festivals. His work-study student, A.J. Stoscher, acted as editor and contributed the layout and cover art.

Before joining Northwestern’s faculty in 2002, Hubbard was the director of theatre at Calvin College and worked extensively in professional theatre. He’s directed an award-winning production of “The Comedy of Errors” and original adaptations of Larry Woiwode’s “Beyond the Bedroom Wall” and Graham Greene’s “The Power and the Glory.”

Hubbard earned a bachelor’s degree in theatre and English from Minot State University, and in 2015, was inducted into the university’s Academic Hall of Fame. He also holds a doctorate in theatre from Bowling Green State University.