Critically acclaimed actor and theatre director specializing in text-based impact theatre. With a track record and passion for directing new works, my approach is Stanislavski/Uta Hagen-based and influenced by years of training as an actor and working as a professional theatre practitioner. Trained in Stanislavski, Meisner, and classical acting (LAMDA), my work explores heightened realism, epic theatre, and post-dramatic expression of classical and contemporary text as a director. Earned a Master of Arts in Directing from one of Britain’s most prestigious conservatoires, the Bristol Old Vic.

ABOUT

 

VICTOR LIRIO is an actor, theatre director and producer. He founded and ran Diverse City Theater Company (DCT) as producing artistic director for ten years (2003-2012). He finished his UK conservatoire training at London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) in classical acting and earned his Master of Arts in Directing at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School (BOVTS). While in the UK, he was part of Tom Morris's (co-creator and Tony winner for War Horse) directing team for the world premiere of Stephen Brown's Semmelweis (Bristol Old Vic, National Theatre, Sonia Friedman Productions) starring Oscar winner Mark Rylance (postponed due to COVID-19 lockdown). He directed Three Days of Rain by Richard Greenberg (BOVTS Studio) and—while in lockdown—a live performance, virtual black box theatre staged readings of Edward Allan Baker's one-act plays, North of Providence and Dolores, live-streamed on May 1, 2020. He directed virtual presentations of West Country Oriental Gentleman by Jaisal Marmion and Pink's Furniture Store by Jacob Woods as part of BOVTS Writers Bloc series. The UK government’s ease on restrictions and new social distancing guidelines allowed Victor to produce and direct innovative (socially distanced) multi-cam full production live-stream of Baker's plays (North of Providence and Dolores) on August 7 and 8 from a converted soundstage in Bristol, UK on the Bristol Old Vic website. 


In New York, Victor directed Cassandra Medley's Coming Up for Air, a full length play about climate change (recipient of the Alfred P. Sloan Grant), for Ensemble Studio Theatre’s First Light Festival starring Tony Award winner Tonya Pinkins and Cell, a play about African American women working at an immigrant detention center in Michigan, with four-time Tony Award nominee Condola Rashad (Showtime’s Billions, A Doll’s House Part 2).


He directed the world premiere of Warren Bodow’s Race Music (New York Times Critic's Choice); Cassandra Medley’s award-winning Noon Day Sun (Time Out New York Critic's Choice), with Obie and Emmy Award winner Ron Cephas Jones (NBC’s This is Us), Gin Hammond, Michael McGlone (Brothers McMullen, Person of Interest), and Melanie Nicholls-King (HBO's The Wire) earning several nominations for the Audelco Awards including Best Dramatic Production of the Year.


Under Victor’s artistic leadership, DCT launched the Green Room Series, an incubator program that developed over 35 original plays including Clean Living by Tony Award nominee Robert Askins (Hand to God). He produced 18 of them in ten productions at Theatre Row including three theater festivals—The Equality Plays Festival (plays about gender identity); Snapshots (plays about mature women, New York Times Critics Choice); and The Pearl Project (plays about Filipino-American diaspora). For the Green Room Series, he directed several new works in-development including Yussef El Guindi's Pilgrims Musa & Sheri in the New World (winner of the 2012 Steinberg Award for Best New Play). At Miami Theater Center, he directed Sarah Ruhl’s The Oldest Boy (mainstage) and Neil Labute’s The Mercy Seat (The SandBox Theatre).


As an actor, he was in the First National Tour of the 1997 Broadway revival of The King & I that premiered at The Kennedy Center (starring Hayley Mills). He played reporter Walker Harris in Lee Blessing’s political drama, Two Rooms, to critical acclaim (directed by Jamie Richards, Theatre Row, NYC). Victor originated lead roles in new works by award winning Filipino-American playwrights alongside Obie Award winner Ching Valdes-Aran: Eduardo in the world premiere of Resurrection by Eric Gamalinda, directed by Michael Sexton; and Anghel in The Female Heart by Linda Faigao-Hall, directed by Jamie Richards. Under Deborah Hedwall's direction, he has been a member of DHCO acting company and residency in Maremma, Italy where he played Harry Bagley in Caryl Churchill's Cloud 9, Lopakhin in Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard, and Medvedenko/Trigorin in The Seagull. At LAMDA, he played Claudius in Hamlet (directed by Gari Jones) and Hippolito in Thomas Middleton's Women Beware Women (directed by James Wallace). He has worked at several Off Broadway and regional theatre companies including Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Public Theater, Huntington Theatre, Lark Theatre, Luna Stage, Ma-Yi Theatre Co., and Queens Theatre in the Park.


Victor has written for and directed Tony Award winner Lea Salonga (Miss Saigon, Les Miserables, Disney’s Aladdin and Mulan) award-winning and critically-acclaimed solo concerts in Manila, Philippines at the PICC (Best Major Concert of the Year, Aliw Awards), in San Francisco at the Nourse Auditorium as well as in New York's legendary venues: Kaleidoscope at The Town Hall, the New York Times acclaimed Back to Before at Café Carlyle, and Lincoln Center’s American Songbook Concert Series at Jazz at Lincoln Center. With special permission from Mr. Stephen Sondheim, he wrote and directed Suites by Sondheim, a star-studded concert event at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall. He produced Ms. Salonga's sold-out Carnegie Hall concert debut at Isaac Stern Auditorium.

Victor did his extensive training in Stanislavski with mentor Deborah Hedwall and in Meisner with Ron Stetson. At Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, he was awarded The Doris Dibden Prize for "exceptional achievements" during his conservatoire training in directing for theatre, radio, and film.

He has taught master classes at University of Miami's and Point Park University's Theater Arts Conservatory and has been an invited speaker at Pace University, Syracuse University, and The Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting panel in New York. On television, his theatre directing work has been featured on NBC's Saturday Morning Show and NY1.

Photo credit: Charlotte East Photography

 

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©2020 by Victor Lirio