John Jesurun is a playwright,director and designer living in New York. His presentations integrate elements of language, film, architectural space and media. His exploded narratives cover a wide range of themes and explore the relation of form to content, challenging the experience of verbal, visual and intangible perceptions. His work is distinguished by his integrated creation of the text,direction,set and media design. Born 1951 in Battle Creek, Michigan. B.F.A. Philadelphia College of Art/1972. M.F.A. in Sculpture from Yale University/ 1974. 1976-79/Television Content Analyst for CBS.1979-82/Assistant to producer/ Dick Cavett Show producing shows on John and Mackenzie Phillips, John Hammond Sr., Odetta and Tito Puente. In 1982 he began began his theatrical career at the Pyramid Club on the Lower East Side with his groundbreaking serial play CHANG IN A VOID MOON, now in its 60th episode. (Bessie Award). Since 1984 he has written,directed and designed over 25 pieces including: the media trilogy of DEEP SLEEP (1986 Obie Award, Best Play), WHITE WATER and BLACK MARIA , NUMBER MINUS ONE, DOG’S EYE VIEW, RED HOUSE, SHATTERHAND MASSACREE, PHILOKTETES, EVERYTHING THAT RISES MUST CONVERGE, SLIGHT RETURN, IRON LUNG, BARDO, SEPTET and SNOW. His company has toured extensively in Europe and the United States. His work has been produced and presented by numerous venues including La Mama, the Kitchen, the Walker Arts Center, On the Boards, Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Wexner Center,Kampnagel Theater, Prater Theater,National Theater of Mexico, Mickery Theater, Theater am Turm, Granada Festival, Eurokaz Zagreb, Bogota International Festival,Vienna Festival,Kyoto Performing Arts Center and Spoleto USA. His short films have been shown at festivals and alternative spaces in Europe and the US. He is the recipient of numerous grants including the: Rockefeller Foundation Playwrights Fellowship Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship National Endowment for the Arts Playwrights Fellowship Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts Fellowship MacArthur Fellowship National Endowment for the Arts-Visual and Media Arts Fellowships Asian Cultural Council Rockefeller Multi-Arts Production BAM/Lucent Technologies Arts in Multimedia MAP Fund He has taught theater at Goethe University/ Frankfurt, Justus Liebig University/ Giessen, DASARTS/Amsterdam, New York University, LaMaMa Umbria, Tokyo University, Kyoto University of Art and Design and the New School. His work is published by Performing Arts Journal(DEEP SLEEP,FAUST), Ediciones El Milagro (PHILOKTETES) (Spanish),Theater Communications Group (WHITE WATER), Sun and Moon Press(EVERYTHING THAT RISES), Yale Theater Magazine(PHILOKTETES) Index, 2Wice, Felix .
PHILOKTETES- German translation by Anna Kohler in Theater der Zeit, Dec. 2004. FAUST/HOW I ROSE-Performing Arts Journal, Sept. 2004. PHILOKTETES in “Divine Fire” Backstage Books/Aug. 2005. He has worked with various artists including Molissa Fenley, Steve Buscemi,Christian Marclay, John Kelly, Hideo Kanze, Neil Greenberg, Rebecca Moore,David Cale, René Pollesch, Fiona Templeton, Frank Maya, Martin Acosta, Barbez and Ron Vawter. His music video for Jeff Buckley was nominated for an MTV award. Other projects include the 2000 staging and video design for the concert performance of Roy Nathanson’s Jazz Suite “Fire at Keaton’s Bar and Grill” featuring Debbie Harry and Elvis Costello at St. Ann’s,Brooklyn and Royal Festival Hall, London,the set and video design for the opera “Dennis Cleveland” at Lincoln Center.
Text, Direction, Design By John Jesurun, presented at KaaiTheater Brussels December 2006.
PHILOKTETES Text, Direction, Design By John Jesurun -Soho Rep -October, 2007
Jesurun will direct and design a new staging of Harry Partch's seminal music/theater piece DELUSION OF THE FURY/ Japan Society, December 2007. 2007 Residencies at Yaddo and the Liguria Study Center.
Publication of FIREFALL text in Performing Arts Journal
CHANG GUIDE- an annotated synopsis guide to the 60 episodes/25 years of CHANG IN A VOID MOON.
Four new pieces: SEPTET:PARTS 1 & 2 STONED LOVE(with Black-Eyed Susan) FIREFALL/PHASE 2 LIZ #1