Rich is an award-winning international theatre maker, writer, deviser and movement director. He has been directing professionally since 2000 and his work spans a wide spectrum of participatory arts projects, outreach and professional productions. Rich has worked in over 25 countries, leading masterclasses, making shows and collaborating with theatre companies. Rich's projects have been included in the London International Mime Festival, The British Council Showcase and in worldwide festivals from Toronto to Aukland.
As part of creating over 200+ original works for small and mid-scale touring, Rich has worked with top devising companies including Hoipolloi, Les Enfants Terribles, New International Encounter and Gecko, and during this time Rich has been involved in the creation of over 35 five-star Edinburgh Fringe productions.
"RICH RUSK CREATES WORK WHICH PLACES IMAGERY AND CREATIVITY AT ITS CORE" - Metro
Rich's early work usually involved touring original children's theatre across the UK. Regular venues included The Lyric Hammersmith, Battersea Arts Centre and Cambridge Junction. Rich was Associate Director at Cambridge Junction for 3 years, running young companies and developing new mid-scale touring work for young audiences. Rich continues to work regularly with young people as a writer, director and workshop facilitator and he continues to run his physical theatre master-classes with young companies and artists across Europe, China, America and the UK.
In 2008 Rich began making and touring work with physical theatre pioneers, Gecko Theatre. As an Associate Director for Gecko, Rich has worked on 'The Overcoat', 'Missing', 'Institute', 'The Time of Your Life' and 'The Wedding’. He toured internationally for over 10 years, throughout Europe and in countries including China, Malaysia, South Korea, Russia and Mexico. The experience of sharing work with audiences across the world has given Rich a unique perspective on communicating ideas and has inspired him to find themes in his work that are universal and innately human.
In 2016, Rich directed 'The Dreamer' in Shanghai. The show is a co-production between Gecko and The Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre. The Dreamer is an original physical theatre production for midscale touring across China and Internationally (which continues to date), developed with support from The British Council.
In 2018 Rich began making work independently again and is now developing several original productions for 2021/22 including children's theatre, immersive theatre, musical theatre, drama school showcases and international collaborations. He is also currently in process of remounting 'Shan Hai Jing', a large-scale international touring production to tour across China.
Professional commissions include straight text, drama school showcases, site specific, immersive, puppetry, children's theatre, physical theatre, dance, interactive, digital, festival experiences, street theatre, musicals, circus and film.
The core values of Rich’s process as a theatre maker are:
Make work which inspires, excites and challenges audiences to be imaginative.
Make bold, brave decisions which push boundaries for performers and audiences.
Make theatre for everyone, tell stories which mean something to all.
Rich is from a working class background and has worked hard throughout his career to keep the arts accessible for all.