International theatre and opera director James Blaszko has been called “a major young, new directing talent” (Zimbabwe Situation), generating amplified live experiences that show “the potential our increasingly multidisciplinary future holds for both theatrical innovation and inclusion” (Howlround.com). A first-generation American raised in a Polish-Pakistani household, Blaszko’s varied education in arts and culture began at an early age and has translated into diverse collaborations across the globe.
His directorial debut, an original adaptation of Cyclops: A Satyr Play, premiered at American Repertory Theatre’s Oberon, which DigBoston called “a shoe-in for Oberon’s raucous, challenging, crowd-pleasing programming” during its sold out run. In collaboration with Brad Learmonth, his site-responsive production of An Iliad incorporates drone technology and continues to tour nationally. Last season, Blaszko staged Puccini’s Il Trittico in South Korea, the opening ceremony of the Harare International Festival of the Arts in Zimbabwe, and an original dance/theatre work based on the memories of a ballerina before and after her brain hemorrhage in New York City.
James has worked as a creative producer for ArtsEmerson as well as a programming assistant at Harlem Stage, deepening his passion for civic engagement through risk-taking work. He has assisted and supported productions with Beth Morrison Projects, National Black Theatre, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Opera Omaha, Bronx Opera, Concrete Temple Theatre, The Drama League, Elevator Repair Service, City Theatre Company and Jeff Stark.
He studied musical theatre and opera performance at the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts before pursuing directing at Emerson College, training in sound design, clowning, percussion, ballroom dance, and other mediums along the way. He has lived in Central Harlem for the past six years.