Richard Orlando founded the Northside Theatre Company in 1978 as a city-run youth theater and took it to independent, non-profit status as an arts education resource in the aftermath of Proposition 13 budget cuts. In 2002, Northside Theatre Company became a fully professional theater. Richard directed and designed over 150 plays, including the world premiere of Nathan Sanders’ The Sugar Witch, which was published by Samuel French Inc. He was a mentor to dozens of young artists and impacted hundreds of lives. From 1990 to 1992, he served as a California Artist in Residence for the San Jose Unified School District. He was a leader in the local arts community and an active San Jose resident. He served as a consultant to the San Jose 2020 Task Force for Mayor Tom McEnery, the San Jose Youth Service Committee for Mayor Susan Hammer, and the Arts Council of Santa Clara County for Germaine Cummings. Orlando was awarded the Certificate of Excellence from State Senator John Vasconcellos in 1990.
What did the Fellowship or Laureate mean to you at the time you received it?
What do you do now? Has your art evolved or changed?
What is one piece of advice you would give to an emerging artist?
Briefly, how would you describe the state of the arts locally, as well as national and beyond?