Meet RISK! Storyteller, Thomas
Name: Thomas Anthony Dixon Jr.
Q: What’s the “riskiest” thing you’ve ever done in public? (Besides performing in RISK!…)
A: Starting a new life as a middle school teacher in South Korea OR going to the UAE this past New Year’s Eve. It was my first time going on one of my NYE trips entirely alone since experiencing a brain injury that caused me to lose my day-to-day episodic memory.
Q: RISK is all about bold, fierce, and uncensored storytelling. Where is the last place you would be caught dead telling the tale you’re going to perform on 4/11 at Underground Arts and why?
A: North Korea, or any other extremely repressive regime because I admit just how much I do not know and how meeting other people has challenged me to address that lack of knowledge/awareness of the world, which such regimes will not allow.
Q: Who is your performer/storytelling idol and why?
A: Jill Bolte Taylor because in sharing the story of her stroke and recovery, and in educating the
public about it via her speaking, she has provided a model for how I can process and share my own story.
Q: FPA’s mission is to transform the drama of real life into memoir and documentary art. What would chapter 6 of your memoir be called?
A: “Traumatic Brain Injury? Technologically Beyond It!” (It had been the title of my first Nerd Nite talk, actually.) OR “Would There Ever Be Enough? The Travels Continue…”
Q: What makes you a good storyteller?
A: I try very hard to put myself within the role of another person and analyze the parts of my own life that have led me to think and feel in particular ways. Examples: Do I think this way because I am from the USA? From this specific part of it? Because I am male? Or of a particular age? Because I pursued higher education? Because I’m white?
I tell myself when I meet another person that it was completely random that I was born as myself–and even that I was born at all. I end up treating others as if I could have been them instead. I try to treat other people how I would hope to be treated if I were them. One cannot assume to understand enough of another easily. That’s why I went into psychology and why I’m still studying the field.
See Thomas perform in RISK! hosted by Kevin Allison of MTV’s The State on 4/11 at Underground Arts. Tix on sale here. For a limited time: Get your tix to RISK! + Grand Slam and SAVE! More info/buy here.