Thomas Riccio
  • Richardson, TX
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Thomas Riccio is now a member of Contemporary Performance Network
Mar 1

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Performance Discipline
Indigenous, Ritual, Immersion, Experimental, Post-Disciplinary
Thomas Riccio is the Poo Pah Doo (a.k.a. Founder and Artistic Director) of Dead White Zombies, a Dallas-based, post-disciplinary performance group, most notably writing/directing/designing performance immersions, Flesh World (2012), T.N.B. (2013), kaRaoKe MoTeL (2014), DP92 (2015), and Holy Bone (2016-17). The Dallas Observer named DWZ the Best Theatre in Dallas for 2017. Under development for DWZ is Blue Jelly, a year-long performance unfolding. Riccio is a post-disciplinary performance and media artist, writer, director. A Professor of Performance and Aesthetic Studies at the University of Texas at Dallas. Previous positions: Professor of Theatre, University of Alaska; Artistic Director, Organic Theater Company (Chicago); Dramaturg and Resident Director, Cleveland Play House; Assistant Literary Director, American Repertory Theatre (research assistant to Robert Brustein); Visiting Professor, University of Der es Salaam (Tanzania), University of Pondicherry (India), University of Nairobi, Korean National University for the Arts; Jishou University (China), Artistic Director, Tuma Theatre, an Alaska Native performance group for nine years. He has directed nationally and internationally, credits include, LaMama ETC, The New York Theatre Workshop, the Teatro di Roma, Center for the Arts (Zambia), Natal Performing Arts Council (South Africa), Lul Theatre (Ethiopia) and at the National Theatre, Republic of Sakha (Siberia), which declared him a "Cultural Hero." Riccio works extensively in the area of indigenous performance, ritual, and shamanism, lecturing, conducting workshops, research and developing performances in South Africa, Zambia, Kenya, Burkina Faso, Tanzania, Russia, Alaska, Korea, India, Nepal, Namibia (working with the !Xuu Bushmen) China, and Vietnam. Academic writings have appeared in TDR, TheatreForum, Theatre Topics, Theatre Research International, and PAJ. Peter Lang published Performing Africa: Remixing Tradition, Theater and Culture. He won an International Distinction Prize in Playwriting, Alexander Onassis Foundation, three of his plays were semi-finalist at the O'Neill Playwright's Conference; his play Rubber City ran in repertory at the Kleist Theatre, Germany. His photographs, videos, and installations have been exhibited in a variety of galleries, festivals and publications. He was a Watermill Resident Artist (2016) and collaborated with playwright Sibyl Kempson on the development of 12 Shouts, a ritual performance project at the Whitney Museum, NYC. His documentary film, Huan Nuo Yuan was recently shown at film festivals in Paris and Sofia, Bulgaria. Current and recent research and performance projects include: work with Miao (SW China) shamans and spirit mediums (2015-2019). He is working on two books, one documenting his work with the Miao, the second book, nearly completion is on his performance development work. For further information: &

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