Joe Cerqua, Co-Founder

Joe is a freelance, award-winning composer, producer, vocalist and sound designer. Joe has composed/designed sound for over 300 productions nationally and internationally. Original music and sound design: Steppenwolf, Goodman Theatre, American Players Theater, Milwaukee Rep, Asolo Theater, The Alliance, Mark Taper Forum, Geva Theater, Deaf West, Northlight Theatre, Skyline Opera, Cleveland Playhouse, Clarence Brown Theatre, Forward Theatre, Kansas City Rep, Indiana Rep, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Shakespeare and Co, Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Repertory Theatre of St Louis, Remy Bumppo. National Tours: Sideman, American Buffalo, How I Learned to Drive, The Laramie Project, Broken Glass, Master Class. Joe is the Composer in Residence for the Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre and the Creative Director and Producer for the Music Department at Columbia College. Future projects include concerts in Chicago with Cerqua Rivera, original music and sound designs for productions with the Arizona Theater Company, American Conservatory Theater, American Players, and Forward Theatre.

Wilfredo Rivera, Co-Founder & Artistic Director

Wilfredo Rivera (Artistic Director) is a co-founder of the Chicago performing arts collective Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre, Artistic Director since 2007. In 2016, he launched his most ambitious artistic project to date, American Catracho. This 3-year exploration of immigration will premiere in segments and debut in celebration of CRDT's 20th Anniversary in 2019. Wilfredo was born in Honduras, trained with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and was a founding member of River North Dance Chicago. Mr. Rivera was honored with the 2009 Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation Choreography Award and a 2001 After Dark Award. Concert work featured at Auditorium Theatre, Chicago Jazz Festival, Hyde Park Jazz Festival, Harris Theater, Ruth Page Center for the Arts, DuSable Museum, Links Hall and Mayne Stage. Additional choreography for Goodman Theatre, Bailiwick Theatre, Metropolis Arts Center, Columbia College, American Theater Co., American Players Theater, Porchlight Theater and Pegasus Players.

Matt Lamb, Co-Founder

Matt Lamb was a funeral director-turned-artist-sculptor-philosopher-peace activist. Oh, yes, and globe-trotting dynamo. Matt made the career switch after mistakenly being diagnosed with an incurable disease and deciding he wanted to do something different with the rest of his life. His artistic work has been exhibited in major galleries in Germany, France, Greece, Ireland, Mexico, Switzerland and Israel. He won a bronze medal from the National Federation of French Culture and served as president of the Midwest Patrons of the Arts, and director of the Vatican Museum Foundation. But Matt, who firmly believed that "art can change the world," is best known for his Umbrellas for Peace project. It began as a therapy for 38 children who lost parents in the terrorist attackts of Sept. 11, 2001. But in the next decade the idea of painting umbrellas for peace spread to more than 2-million participants in 29 countries. The CRDT family was privileged to work with him. Matt will be missed.

Catherine Painter, Executive Director

Catherine Painter became the first Executive Director of CRDT in 2015.  She is also Development Consultant to the Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Praize Productions Inc., and Rivendell Theatre Ensemble and on the faculty of the University of Illinois - Chicago Certificate in Non-Profit Management Program. Previously, she consulted with the American Indian Association, Trinity Irish Dance Company, and independent artists, and worked with Victory Gardens Theater, Merit School of Music, Northlight Theatre, and Latin School of Chicago. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s of Science degrees from Northwestern University.

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