The latest discoveries from the Jack Mitchell Archives, including never-before-seen photographs. Blog entries © 2016 Craig B. Highberger,
Photographs © 2017 Jack Mitchell, All Rights Reserved.

May 12, 2014
Found in the Archives: John Vaccaro and Play-House of the Ridiculous

I really loved interviewing John Vaccaro for my Jackie Curtis documentary “Superstar in a Housedress”. He founded the groundbreaking avante garde theater company "Play-House of the Ridiculous" in 1965. Jackie Curtis performed in many works directed by Vaccaro including "Cockstrong" and "The Life of Lady Godiva". Vaccaro's experimental theater troupe performed several of Jackie Curtis' plays including "Heaven Grand in Amber Orbit" which played at La Mama in 1970 and toured internationally for two years.


Jack Mitchell photographed John Vaccaro at La Mama Experimental Theatre Club in New York, April 8, 1972 while he was directing rehearsals of his Play-House of the Ridiculous play "Persia, a Desert Cheapie".


This is Play-House of the Ridiculous’s rock group “Darkages” performing "Persia, a Desert Cheapie" at La Mama in New York, April 8, 1972. The play was scripted by John Vaccaro and Bernard Roth and was billed as “Environmental Theater with audience involvement (as if they were the extras in the making of a movie of the Arabian Nights)!

Note the heavy use of glitter in the makeup, which was due to Jackie Curtis' influence!

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