Bob Abelman

Photo courtesy Bob Abelman

Professor Bob Abelman



September 14, 2015

Professor recognized as “Best Critic in Ohio”

By Sara Liptak

School of Communication Professor Bob Abelman has been teaching at Cleveland State University since 1982, but his critical thinking skills and talent in the arts began long before then.

Through Abelman’s real world experience as an actor, playwright and critic, he brings professional insight to his ability to engage Cleveland State students in arts journalism.

Abelman has recently been recognized as the “Best Critic in Ohio” by the Society of Professional Journalists for his work at Cleveland Jewish News.

He also received recognition as “Best Ohio Theater Critic” in the Press Club of Cleveland’s All-Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards, winning first place.

These awards not only recognize Abelman as a critic, but also emphasize the quality of the professionalism he offers students at Cleveland State.

Before becoming a professor, Abelman was a professional actor in New York City. Years later, when his daughter AJ went into acting, he came out of retirement so they could perform on stage together.

Abelman began reading reviews, and realized that many of the local critics didn’t capture the artistry of theater production in their writing.

“I made some mistakes early on [in my critical review writing] and it took some time to find my voice as a columnist,” Abelman said. “But once I did, I landed the position at the Cleveland Jewish News.”

Cleveland State junior Abby Burton is taking Abelman’s Media Criticism (COM 327) course now. Although school has only been in session for less than a month, she said feels she’s already gaining practical critical thinking skills through his teaching.

“I think that Professor Abelman is very knowledgeable in theater and critical thinking,” Burton said. “He is very passionate about what he teaches and will go to about any length to make sure his students fully understand what it is he is trying to say. I feel like I am lucky to have this course with him to learn now to think critically in what seems like the most enjoyable way possible.”

Abelman writes as a theater critic/columnist for the Cleveland Jewish News, and in syndication, for The News Herald in Lake County and The Morning Journal in Lorain.

He earned his bachelor’s degree at Hartford University, his master’s degree at Michigan State University and his doctorate from University of Texas.

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Bob Abelman





School of Communication professor Bob Abelman has recently been recognized for his work as a critic by two area journalism professional organizations. Read more ...







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