As shot-caller for the Dallas-based arts group Dead White Zombies, Riccio puts the pedagogy of mythology and anthropology right on the line of Dallas culture, blending the politics, pastimes and social structures of the city with the cosmology of classical paganism (Homer, Virgil, Ovid) and a variety of shamanistic traditions, both ancient and contemporary.
He asks them to search in themselves, their experiences and memories and asks them to tell him about them. The appropriate revelations are then used where necessary being worked into the structure of the play ... Judging by what we were shown it is not very difficult to make him an equal with a master.
The Echo, Republic of Sakha, Siberia
But much is startling, nothing is quite predicable, in Thomas Riccio's collage of American Images. It manipulates American mythic figures--Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, and John F. Kennedy--and a garbage mountain of other cutout images from the American scene to paint a hallucinatory but precise picture of corruption. It starts with workshop of rock and roll idols, ends with the worship of Christ-as-a-TV-preacher, and along the way it builds momentum as a hammering moral indictment of the American way.
What Riccio brings to his circus, along with the pounding energy of the presentation, gives the production a manic power and sweep. It's like watching Niagara flow upside down. Streaks and blips of phoniness perversion, and illusion wheel, circle, and blend together to create a Dantesque vision of a gone world.
A funhouse of effects, through which director Tom Riccio has guided his characters with a fanciful but strong and almost unerring hand.
Northern Ohio Live Magazine
It is only natural that Tom Riccio should be the director to take this important step: he has long been a believer in style-dominated theatre based on clearly readable movement going back to Commedia del Arte.
Facets Features, Chicago
The Playwright has directed them beautifully.
Dallas Morning News
Riccio started to think about creating a piece of theater that didn’t necessarily take place in any particular space, but rather used the entire city as its theater, expanding the definition of a theatrical production so broadly that the Zombies could claim any space in which to perform.