The Year of Projects


Since graduating from Wesleyan University in 2018 with an English major and a minor in economics, Henry Lombino ’14 has kept busy. He’s been involved in multiple regional and off-Broadway performances and produced two successful independent productions in New York, a revival of Amiri Baraka’s Dutchman at Access Theater in November 2019, and the following month, an original oratorio, Above the Noise, at Dixon Place.

“This year in particular I made a promise to myself to make this ‘the year of projects,’” Lombino said. “Each one is a new opportunity to learn and grow and make mistakes.”

Lombino ascribes this propensity to be continually engaged to the exponential growth that happens in freelance art work. You do a good job on one production, he said, and you meet people who you admire and worked well with, and then those people reach out to you when they have another project, and vice versa. “The performing arts world can feel shockingly small,” he explained. With that interwoven community, and projects developing quickly, getting asked to work on something new sometimes feels like luck, he said, “but to use a snappy and overused quote, ‘luck is what happens when opportunity meets preparedness.’”
Working on theater projects began at Williston, where he was active in tech theater since seventh grade. “So many of my favorite high school memories happened in that theater,” he said, from learning how act drunk for his first role—the porter in Macbeth—to nailing the blocking and music for Urinetown, to performing his first dance solo. “Every time I was in that theater,” he said, “it felt like home.”

As for what’s in store for Lombino’s future, he’s not quite sure. He’s recently been partnering with filmmaker friends on capturing dance on film. He’s been working with a director on a devised—improvised, unscripted—immersive performance piece. And he remains interested in poetry and prose. “I’m always trying to find time to write or at least read something I haven’t read before,” he said. Ultimately, he would love to be a full-time producer or theater administrator. “Or not,” he said. “Maybe tomorrow I’ll decide I want to be a choreographer. Or become a tea expert. Or start an ice cream business. I’m a big proponent of figuring life out as you go along.”