Meet Fight Choreographer, Bill Warriner!

What inspired you to become a theater maker and fight choreographer? 

I started in the theater when I was 8, I was hooked. Being a fight director came later, thanks to Jamie Cheatham… my first stage combat teacher. It’s a way to tell a story without words and I was fascinated by that.

What kind of education prepared you for this career? 

My time at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy was very important, from there seeking every opportunity to learn what I could from whoever would teach me.

What school subjects that our students may be studying do you use everyday? 

All of them. History, Geometry, Science, Literature, Social sciences, Shop classes… just learn everything.

What unique qualities about Lucha Libre do you hope audiences see in the staged fights of Luchadora

Lucha Libre has a rich history and cultural significance, and it’s just fun. Everything in Lucha tells a story. The mask, how the performer moves, everything. I hope that story was well told.

How do we keep our actors safe while making the fights look as authentic as possible? Preparation, communication, training and rehearsal. When I step into rehearsal, I’ve put in a lot of time already. For Luchadora, hours of research to take Lucha Libre wrestling and make it safe to do over and over. Designing the matches according to the performer, not to what I can do.

If you were a lucha libre wrestler, what would your character’s name be?

El Escudo. The Shield. It’s my job to protect my performers.

Bill Warriner is a graduate of AMDA in NYC. He’s been an active fight director for 31 years, and his work has been seen on almost every Central Florida stage. He is the resident fight director for Phantasmagoria and Valencia College.


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