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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Teatro Luna, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 10 of 10
1. Teatro Luna 's Shining Light

Teatro Luna Fabulousness!

Teatro Luna
has a BRAND NEW SHOW opening on March 6th, but you can catch it now! This Saturday and Sunday see a sneak preview of Teatro Luna's most intimate show yet... SOLO TU, a collection of
four interwoven solos all about different women's experiences with PREGNANCY.

One woman thinks she's finally built the perfect family - Mom, Dad, Cute Kid- until an invasion of mice makes her wonder what's really going on. Another woman finds herself caught up in the worst kind of Baby-Daddy-Single-Mama Drama. Meanwhile, a woman in her third year of trying to get pregnant decides her pregnant friends make her want to vomit, and her close friend wrestles with pro-life activists, hospital robes, and how she feels about having an abortion in her 30's.

Saturday @ 7:30 pm and Sunday @ 6pm
SHOW RUN: March 6-April 6 2008 Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays @ 7:30 pm Sundays @ 6pm Chicago Dramatists 1105 W. Chicago Ave, at Milwaukee Tickets $15, Student and Senior Discount on Thursdays and Sundays only, $10 $12 Group Sale price, parties of 8 or more For tickets, visit www.teatroluna.org

Mind, you the company is filled with talented, writers and performers, and it was rough to pair down, but gente, enjoy this interview with three of Teatro Luna's members, Diana Pando, who does administration for the group as well as writing, Tanya Saracho and Diana Herrera, both writers/actors.


Describe your own personal journey as a writer.

Well, I’m trying to catch up to myself in this writer’s journey. I write poems, press releases, blog, snippets here and there of scenes and dialogue. I want to spend more time writing fiction and trying to better understand my creative process. I’ve worked with a lot of people in the arts and enjoy supporting their creative efforts. This year, I’m going to be a little selfish and focus in on my creative pursuits. I’ve always liked journal writing. Just the other day I dusted one off and leafed through the pages and it allowed me to remember myself in another place and time. Writing is so powerful. I think when you write your higher self is revealed.

How did your voice and your message begin to reveal itself?

Voice is so powerful. You either use it or lose it. I think my writer’s voice is still revealing itself in these early stages of my writing life. For me it’s writing bits and pieces here and there. Eventually, coming back to the kladeiscope of writing that I do and putting it all together.

Who were/are important influences for you?

There are a lot of wonderful writers that inspire and influence me. The one that impacted me directly was my mom. She worked long hours at a meat packing plant and at the thrift store on the south side so I can have the luxury of writing. After she passed, I found a lot of notebooks with journal entries, unfinished letters and poems. Every now and then I find a little note that brings a smile to my face.

How does Teatro Luna feed your creative life and vise versa?

Teatro Luna has creative energy spewing out in every direction. The ensemble is such an energetic and hilarious group of talented women. You can’t help but be inspired. They are paving the way for that next generation of Latinas in the arts. I’ve had the opportunity to participate in one of their writing workshops. The piece that I created out of the workshop is called Tía Betty and the Glucose of Doom based on my mom’s struggle with diabetes. The workshop process is definitely a powerful one. It gave me the creative kick in the butt to nudge me a long. As a result, the 20 minute piece I wrote is slowly expanding taking on a life of it’s own. I work on and off on it because it’s a hard and personal piece to write.

What's the significance of working in an all woman-all Latina teatro?

I think it was in 2002 when I first went to see one of TL’s shows when they were at the Pilsen space. I was blown away! I had never seen Latinas on stage before. It was a major discovery for me. By creating new works Teatro Luna is impacting local and national audiences through touring. Teatro Luna is currently the only Latina theatre company producing full seasons. For me there is nothing better than seeing these brilliant Latinas blazing on stage and practicing their art and sharing the stories of Latinas with others. Their communal creativity is really in harmony with each other and adds to their success.

You work in a variety of discplines---playwriting, poetry, performance--
Talk about the differences in each. Is there a genre you feel is your "favorite?"

As an emerging writer, I think my strengths are poetry and fiction writing. I’m dabbling in playwriting because I’m absolutely fascinated by creating dialogue and having actors bring the characters to life. Even though I’ve been doing theatre administration for Teatro Luna they teach me so much about the process.

Talk a little about Proyecto Latina. What do you hope it provides for community writers, and book lovers?

Proyecto Latina is a wonderful community based initiative between Tianguis Bookstore, Teatro Luna and myself. This open mic takes place every 3rd Monday of the month at Radio Arte and it’s a place for Latina’s to come out and show off their talent whether it’s poetry, fiction writing, belly dancers and Hula Hoopers it’s an open mic that brings together emerging and established Latinas in the arts to share, explore and encourage their creative pursuits. We are impacting that next generation by giving them an outlet to show off their creativity. Irasema Gonzales, owner of Tianguis Bookstore, has done an amazing job of lining up some the best features. There’s even a chismé box where you can drop your anonymous chismé and we read them during the open mic. Please drop in and check it out. Log on to http://www.tianguis.biz

What are you sources of inspiration?

A source of inspiration for me is walking through the city. I’m a big fan of long walks despite a toe spur gone amuck. Anyway, too much information. Friends always look at me with suspicion when I tell them we are just three blocks away. Rightfully, so I guess. Three blocks is the equivalent of ten blocks for me. I’m a wanderer. I love to look at people, places and things. Me embobo luego, luego, especially when I’m in Mexico City. There is nothing like being in the Zócalo on a rainy day. Definitely inspires and leaves me drenched. I always forget my umbrella…

What's the role of female friendship in your daily life and as a writer?

Funny you should ask this question. It’s my lifeline! I can’t go back to anything else. In 2002, Irasema Gonzales invited me to see a reading of Sandra Cisneros up at Loyola. I was feeling a little lazy and it was cold out. Thankfully, she dragged me out there anyway. It was an amazing reading and what came out of it was such a blessing. After the reading Sandra was signing her book and answering questions. There was this annoying girl with a red shirt talking and talking to Sandra. “Hurry Up” I wanted to yell “We want to talk to Sandra too!” The line finally began to move and when we got there Irasema asked about writing groups and Sandra told us to connect with the woman in red. The woman in red is now a dear friend and fabulous writer. Our writing group consists of Lizann Acosta, Professor of World Literature & Teatro Luna Artistic Associate, Irasema Salinas, Tianguis Bookstore Owner, Family Dr. Yolanda Cardenas, Magda Banda Ph.d Candidate in Comparative Education and me. Sandra probably has no idea but she’s our writing group madrina.

Where would you like to be creatively and professionally in ten years?

In ten years, I will be producing consistent work in different generes of writing, collaborating with other Latinas on projects, encouraging Latino professionals to support the arts through philanthropy, create the Mariposa Atomica Arts Fund and do advocacy work for the arts. Latinos enrich the arts in the city of Chicago and it’s important that we support and cultivate those efforts.

Tell us something not in the offical bio.

I have an 800 pound Dalmation and he’s more than a decade old, I’m a mascara junkie and my favorite mantra is vision + action = Reality.

(Courtesy Time Out Chicago)

Describe your own personal journey as a writer.
How did your voice and your message begin to reveal itself?
Who were/are important influences for you?

I am undisciplined and disorganized. My journey is clunky and aimless lately. Ultimamente, I write because projects are due. I haven't written for the joy of it in a while. Well, angry emails and blogs, but nothing of note. Inspiration hits me like a headache, or a stomach ache-it's a painful process sometimes-and it hits at the most inopportune times. Like when I'm driving and talking on the phone, when I'm in a waiting room-with no paper or pen, when I'm in the bathroom. It just hits and runs through my body like diarrhea. It is not a pleasant experience sometimes. It used to be. The little lightning bolt that tingled. Now? It's mostly a painful thing. Maybe it's because of the pieces I've been working on lately. I don't know.

Everyday people influence me. I love how people talk. I love dialogue. I love talking. I sort of like listening. I like talking more. But when I do listen, I love the shifts in cadence and tone, tilts of accents and quirks of the vernacular. I love how people talk. I love how MY people talk. And that umbrella is a large one. I consider most MY people.

How does Teatro Luna feed your creative life and vise versa?
What's the significance of working in an all woman-all Latina teatro?

I would never have been able to explore the topics and styles I've explored during the last eight years, had it not been for Teatro Luna. Who would've produced a half bilingual play about a two young Mexican girls growing up in Texas? Who would have produced three monologues about being a woman of Mexican descent, and let me play them all? Who would have let me show my scars, both physical and emotional, and not judge me harshly for it? No where would I have been able to do that. Teatro Luna is a beautiful thing. It's a sisterhood, it's a womb-I don't care if I sound cheesy-it IS a womb. People feel it when they come around us. Everyone's worked is supported, pero tambien nos jalamos las orejas. It's a beautiful thing. I love women. I love women's stories. I love to give voice to women. I...I just love women.

In a related vein, Teatro Luna has plumbed the Latina experience and pushed the envelope on issues of identity, gender and relationship. Talk about TL's significance as a child of traditional teatro, of post-movimiento social commentary.

It's hard for me to have perspective on this. I'm not objective. Obviously, I think what we do is really interesting. But I don't think we've pushed the envelope enough. What we do is pretty simple. We get up there and tell stories. If that's not traditional teatro, I don't know what is. In form, we are not that...I don't know, we are not that innovative. Episodic, ensemble-built work has been around since the Greeks, since Miracle plays, since Spanish pasarelas and posadas de la colonia and early twentieth century Latin American revistas. I think our uniqueness is found in the sum of our parts, in the combination of how we treat topics, how we build pieces, in our gender and our race/ethinicity/nationalities. It's the sum of all those things that create that special something that is Luna.

You work in a variety of disciplines---playwriting, poetry, performance--
Talk about the differences in each. Is there a genre you feel is your "favorite?"

I'm mostly a writer for the stage. I don't have a talent for poetry. I respect poets immensely. To be able to structure and mold words aurally and rhythmically is a talent I truly admire.

Talk a little about Proyecto Latina. What do you hope it provides for community writers and book lovers?

I can't believe we've been doing Proyecto Latina for two years now. I remember the first time we did it, and how we filled Meztli Cafe and how every one was excited about every performer. You could feel the electricity in the place. Not much has changed, the location perhaps, but people are still excited to hear and support new work by Latina writers-of all genres, not just poetry. It provides a much needed outlet and cocoon to nurture our work.

What are you sources of inspiration? What's the role of female friendship in your daily life and as a writer?

All my plays are about females. I don't think that's limiting in the least; They all deal with a female central character and I can't deny it, each and every one has at least a bit of coloring that I draw from the women in my life. My mother, my sisters, my Teatro Luna sisters (who are more than friends)... I take the ribbons of vernacular from their mouths and plaster them on the stage. Their words are much more brilliant than mine will ever be. They are wise and funny and flawed. It's my friend's Yadira's zinger lines and her obsession with the perfect meal. It's my friend Miranda's struggle for her dreams and the sting failure causes. It's Tatiana's depression and her unwillingness to come to surface, but her attempt at it every day. It's my friends navigating their contradictions. Those things are much more interesting than anything I'd come up with on my own. Now I might piss people off. Make them angry because I just take one tiny little shade of blue here, or a smudge of brown and they think that's definitive of my opinion of them. But that's never the case. I am often in trouble for it though.

Where would you like to be creatively and professionally in ten years?

I'd love to be feeding myself fully with the work. Sharing it with as many people as possible. In whatever form. Whatever that means. Whether bigger stages. More productions. Far reaching publications. I'm not sure what that means, but I'd like to have figured it out and be in a place to open doors for other people. Be on the founding stage of programming that makes sure our voice is being heard. In ten years I would have liked to have gotten out of my myopic state and attempt a period piece about hoodoo in the American South during the late 1800's. Nothing to do with Latinidad. That's just a little project that has been rattling in my brain. But it's a long time for that one. In a decade, I'd like to have a cannon of work I can be proud of, but having the best yet to come. Also, in ten years Teatro Luna will be an institution; financially healthy, administratively strong, artistically excellent. Still doing the work.

Tell us something not in the official bio.

I am addicted to divination and getting my cards read. Every week. Every. Week. My name is Tanya Selene Saracho Armenta, and I am a divination addict.


Describe your own personal journey as a writer.

I took a new plays workshop class in college as an actor, but the teacher made all of us write these six-line scenes…it was my first time writing dialogue and characters and I had a blast. My teacher thought I had potential, so he kept bugging me to take his Playwriting class. I was like, I'm not a writer but he persisted. I finally took the class and fell in love with writing. I write solo pieces and short plays now, and I'm working on trying to get a full-length completed…kinda hard when you have a 6 month old at home! But I'm trying!

How did your voice and your message begin to reveal itself?

I don't think my voice really revealed itself until I started working with Teatro Luna. I learned a huge lesson "write what you know". I also learned to write from a more honest place—my writing has progressed leaps and bounds since I started working with these lovely ladies!

Who were/are important influences for you?

Important influences—I'm not very well read when it comes to playwrights—I know, I know…it's a shame. But I do have to say that Tanya Saracho has been a huge influence on me. I love how ALIVE her characters seem—she is so good at mapping these journeys for her characters that are interesting and humanizing…you walk away from the show dazed, thinking where did that time go? It just flew by? What's going to happen to that lady now? And you find yourself still wondering about that character weeks later…that's the sign of a great writer. To keep you involved with the story even after you leave the theater.

How does Teatro Luna feed your creative life and vise versa?

Since a lot of the TL projects are ensemble-based, I tend to spark ideas off my fellow cast members. I love that they have workshops where you can bring in your writing and get feedback…I think it's such a great environment for developing new work.

What's the significance of working in an all woman-all Latina teatro?

The all-woman all-Latina teatro is a GODSEND. I worked in sketch comedy for a long time, and the male competitiveness is incredible. And if you are a woman who is a talented and prolific writer, watch out! One time, I actually had one of my cast members call me to tell me to stop writing so much…he was upset that I was constantly "showing him up" because I'd bring in 10 sketches to his 3. It's fine to have healthy competition, but not in an ensemble setting. That conversation ruined the project for me. Another wonderful thing about working with all women is when you're having a bad day, you don't get the "she must be PMS'ing" eye roll…you can be more open with your emotions. It also frees you up creatively because you are more likely to be more open with your work and more willing to accept criticism.

I enjoy the COLLABORATIVE feel of TL, and a lot of it has to do with the all-women role. As for all-Latina…it's like being home. I might not speak Spanish, but I identify as Latina…and it's nice to be in an environment where I don't have to explain why I'm not drinking margaritas on Cinco de Mayo!!! It's also inspiring to have this group of strong, talented women who embrace their heritage.

In a related vein, Teatro Luna has plumbed the Latina experience and pushed the envelope on issues of identity, gender and relationship. Talk about TL's significance as a child of traditional teatro, of post-movimiento social commentary.

Egads…that question feels like an essay test I haven't studied for!!!! I think Coya and Tanya will be able to give you a better answer than what I can give…pass!

You work in a variety of disciplines---playwriting, poetry, performance--
Talk about the differences in each. Is there a genre you feel is your "favorite?"

I don't work too much in poetry, except what I write in my journals that will never been shown to ANYONE 'cause it's really bad poetry! But here we go with the other two. My favorite has to be playwriting because I think I have a God complex. Seriously, it's intoxicating to create this whole world and populate them with these people that use YOUR WORDS to express themselves…then if you're lucky you get a chance to see it LIVE!! How cool is that? Also, though…there is that moment of CONNECTION. When you make a bulls-eye with the hearts of your audience members. There is nothing as gratifying as when someone comes up to me after a show and tells me, you were writing about me. I wrote a piece in "The Maria Chronicles" about visiting my brother in prison, and after shows I had several people tell me about their experiences with family members in prison. One lady told me that after my piece she reconciled with her brother and visited him for the first time in years. That really touched me. It might sound trite, but it's true…writing plays for me is like reaching out and saying "I'm not alone, you are not alone…for this moment we will be taking this journey together". I write because sometimes these feelings I have are so intense it becomes necessary to overflow them onto paper. I chose to share my journey, though, instead of locking it up in a diary (well, except my poems. Those don't need to be shared!).

So where does performance fit in? To me, performance is another level of connection with the audience. It's very cathartic, and it's wonderful because you get instant gratification…laughter during a one-liner delivered just right, silence during a dramatic moment…applause. Oh, the applause! Performing is such a high, because you are on this tightrope wire where any sudden change (even something like the theater being too hot or the seats too uncomfortable) will distract your audience…you have to EARN their attention…but once you've earned it what a RUSH.

Talk a little about Proyecto Latina. What do you hope it provides for community writers and book lovers?

I've enjoyed participating in Proyecto Latina in the past…unfortunately I've been absent from the monthly events for a while. However, I think it's such a wonderful opportunity for new artists…and I LOVE that there is a set limit of people that can perform, that it's a 5 minute time limit and that there is a featured performer. That is key…to be able to enjoy these "tastes" of performance without being overwhelmed by a 4 hour open mike. I know being able to hear various artists has inspired my own writing. I'm hoping I can start attending again…I've missed it!

What are you sources of inspiration? What's the role of female friendship in your daily life and as a writer?

My family is a HUGE source of inspiration for me—we have this carefully honed sense of humor that I use in my writing. They are very supportive of me—I talk a lot about them in my pieces and I haven't been disowned. Yet. I love comedy, so of course I'm all over female writers like Tina Fey—even watching the old episodes of The Carol Burnett Show gives me inspiration as a writer. Currently I'm working on a two-woman show, and we are using "The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe" as inspiration…Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin collaborated on this piece, and it's amazing.

Where would you like to be creatively and professionally in ten years?

Creatively, I'd like to still be writing and getting my work produced…if I can perform occasionally that would be a bonus. It's hard because I do have a family now, and I'm the primary breadwinner…so not only do I have to balance work with family, I have to find time to write and stay involved in projects as well. The good thing is that my husband is VERY supportive—in fact, he's the one that keeps pushing me to take on these projects and he's great about covering the night shifts at home, taking care of our daughter and the house. So it's just a matter of figuring out what the next step is…the point is, I can't figure out next year, much less TEN years from now!!

Tell us something not in the official bio.

I am a HUGE fan of science fiction—my favorite authors include Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, HP Lovecraft, Charles Beaumont…and I LOVE TV shows like "The Twilight Zone", "Heroes", "Lost"anything with a sci-fi edge to it! And yes, I was one of those geeks that stood in line for Star Wars tickets. Han Solo was my first crush.


Women and Creativity Conference/Lisa Alvarado Shameless Self-Promotion Department

Gente: I've been blessed enough to have been asked to perform The Housekeeper's Diary at the conference -- Friday, March 7, at 8 PM at the National Hispanic Cultural Center's Roy E. Disney Center for the Performing Arts, as well as a reading for high school students at the Center's Wells Fargo Auditorium, Monday, March 10th at 10 AM.

Conference Info: Women and Creativity 2008 is organized and presented by the National Hispanic Cultural Center in partnership with more than 25 local arts organizations, artists, writers and independently owned-business. This year, we have an inspiring offering of more than 50 exhibitions, performances, workshops, classes, and engaging discussions in Albuquerque and Santa Fe.

Women and Creativity
partners invite you to dedicate an afternoon, evening or entire weekend in March to attend events and workshops that awaken and nourish your own creativity and support the creativity of our communities. Although we shine a special light on women’s creativity during this festival, we invite and encourage the participation of men at all events.

The National Hispanic Cultural Center, along with our partners in Women and Creativity 2008, believe that creativity, art and self-expression are central to sustaining healthy individuals, organizations, business and communities – so, join in and celebrate the creative women in your community and the creativity inside yourself.

There will also be a fabulous PEÑA FEMENINA Sunday, March 9th at NHCC's LA FONDA DEL BOSQUE;

Other Artists:
Alma Jarocha,
Leticia Cuevas, Anabel Marín,
Otilio Ruiz, Victor Padilla

Jessica López

Bailaora Xicana, Flamenco
marisol encinias, vicente griego, ricardo anglada

Lenore Armijo


National Hispanic Cultural Center
1701 4th St, SW Albuquerque, New Mexico

More Conference News from Demetria Martinez

On Saturday, March 8 at 3 p.m. the first-ever Spanish-language anthology of work by women who reside in New Mexico will be unveiled at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque. Titled Metamorfosis, the book was co-founded by Demetria Martinez, Rosalee Montoya-Reed and Maria Nieves de Abajo Bajo. Please join us to celebrate International Women's Day, poetry, the Spanish language and creativity. A reception will follow. Please RSVP at 724-4777.

And Lastly, news from La Divina, Johanny Vasquez

Hola to Everyone:

I will be participating at the Nuestras Voces: Women's Poetry Night at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign this Thursday, March 6, 2008. The event will take place at from Caffe Paradiso7:00 to 9:00 pm. This will be my first time at U of I, so I'm extremely excited.

If you live in the area or know people that live in Urbana/Champaign, please come by or let them know.

For more information got to my blog at:


or to the University Site at:


Hasta la vista, Johanny

Lisa Alvarado

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2. The Bearable Lightness of Being

In Being Bodies, Lenore Friedman and Susan Moon offer the perspectives of a variety of women with varying Buddhist practices. The result is a contemplative and compelling work dealing with what it means to be female, what it means to fully and consciously inhabit the female body.

The last wave of the Western women’s movement critiqued the idea that a women was her body. In fact, a major focus of that movement was the position that biology was not destiny. This was primarily a response to the social construction of women’s identity, the objectification of a women as nothing more than physical self. However, there was little offered to support women in learning to fully live in that physicality, to know it as both vessel and endpoint.
Being Bodies offers a view that a woman’s self-knowledge is rooted in the flesh. Women’s awareness is based in surrendering to the body’s impermanence, its joy, its suffering, and its death. One of the most thought-provoking essays is Linda Chrisman’s "Birth".

In it, she describes the process of labor, and giving birth to her son. What's striking about this experience was how Chrisman was both deeply enmeshed in that process and separate from it. The most telling lesson, for both Chrisman and the reader, occurred at the height of labor. Here she realizes that all her physical conditioning, all her contemplative practice would not save her from pain. This selection beautifully illustrates the message of
Being Bodies. There may be another path for women, rooted in surrender to the fullness and limits of the body. Through that choice, a woman may find self-knowledge and ultimately, freedom. While the focus of Being Bodies is the female experience, it is a universal and object lesson about Buddhist ideas of impermanence, and becoming fully present in every moment by letting go. I was moved to tears reading this book. It reminds me that true beauty is the sum of both pleasing things as well the scars.

I feel such a strong, visceral connection to the stories of the women profiled in this anthology. (Interesting that "visceral" is the only word that comes to mind in reviewing a book dealing with the experience of being grounded in the body and the odyssey of transcendence.)
This book is a pivotal one as I try to develop a deeper spiritual practice - moving East in order to come West, hoping to re-encounter and reinterpret my own ideas of embodiment, spirituality and existence.

ISBN-10: 1570623244
ISBN-13: 978-157062324


Acentos and AWP Conference News

On Tuesday, January 29th at 7pm, we break from our normal schedule to bring you ACENTOS on a FIFTH TUESDAY, in conjunction with the Bay Area's own Craig Perez and Achiote Press.

The featured poets that night will be two amazing young writers:

Marina Garcia-Vasquez
, acontributor to the press' ACHIOTE SEEDS, Volume 2, and Javier O. Huerta, author of the acclaimed debut collection, SOME CLARIFICATIONS Y OTROS POEMAS. As always, the Uptown's best open mic will precede the festivities, and your host will be John Rodriguez.

On Thursday, January 31st at 6pm, the Con Tinta collective presents its annual awards dinner and reading.

Lifetime achievement awards are to be presented to Nuyorican writers
Sandra Maria Esteves and Tato Laviera. The dinner will take place at Mojitos', located at 227 E. 116th Street, between 2nd and 3rd Avenue. The reading will be held in conjunction with PALABRA, a journal of Chicano and Latino literary arts. Your hosts for the evening will be Urayoan Noel and Rich Villar.

Finally, on Friday, February 1st at 6:30pm, El Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños presents ACENTOS: A Gathering of Latino and Latina Poets. The event is slated to take place at the School of Social Work at Hunter College, 129 E. 79th Street, at the corner of 79th and Lexington. A lineup of more than 20 emerging and nationally recognized Latino and Latina poets are set to take the stage, including Martin Espada, Sandra Maria Esteves, Brenda Cardenas, Aracelis Girmay, Willie Perdomo, and many more.

It's going to be a busy January for your crew at Acentos, and we wouldn't have it any other way. Keep an eye on this list for further updates, news, features and even more poetry events for the '08, as well as information about our fifth anniversary show in March.

Details for all our January events are listed below. See you all there!

Rich Villar
for the Acentos crew.

Tuesday, January 29th @ 7pm
ACENTOS Bronx Poetry Showcase A reading in collaboration with Achiote Press featuring JAVIER O. HUERTA and MARINA GARCIA-VASQUEZ plus the Uptown's Best Open Mic

The Bruckner Bar and Grill
One Bruckner Blvd. (corner of Third Ave. and Bruckner Blvd.) 6 Train to 138th Street Station Hosted by John Rodriguez FREE! ($5 suggested donation) Thursday, January 31st @ 6pm Con Tinta's Annual Award Ceremony and Reading Honoring the work of Nuyorican poets SANDRA MARIA ESTEVES and TATO LAVIERA Mojitos' Bar 227 E. 116th Street (between 2nd and 3rd Ave.) 6 Train to 116th Street Station Hosted by Urayoan Noel, Rich Villar, and the Con Tinta collective FREE and open to the public.

Friday, February 1st @ 6:30pm ACENTOS: A Gathering and Celebration of Latino and Latina Poets Presented by El Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueñ os at Hunter College and Acentos Bronx Poetry Showcase

Featuring over twenty emerging and nationally recognized Latino and Latina poets
The School of Social Work @ Hunter College 129 E. 79th Street (corner of 79th and Lexington) 6 Train to 77th Street Station, two blocks north to 79th and Lex. FREE and open to the public.

Acentos: The Bronx's Premiere Spot for Poetry

"Acentos is one of the best audiences, one of the best venues, I've ever seen. The organizers do a great job, not only in terms of spreading the word, but also in terms of creating anticipation. I feel like I'm part of a community, part of a movement. Aquí estamos y no nos vamos." Martín Espada




After a sold out run at Chicago Dramatists, MACHOS is moving to the 16th Street Theater in Berwyn, IL, conveniently located near the CTA/Blue Line Austin stop.

Tickets are already on sale, and I hope you will help spread the word!

Here's the scoop:

At 16th Street Theater 4 weeks only! January 25 through – February 17, 2008

Fridays at 7:30 PM Saturdays at 5:00 PM Saturdays at 8:00 PM Sundays at 6:00 PM

at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/25539

Lisa Alvarado

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3. Teatro Luna's GREAT News


After a sold out run at Chicago Dramatists, MACHOS is moving to the 16th Street Theater in Berwyn, IL, conveniently located near the Blue Line Austin stop. Tickets are already on sale, and I hope you will help me spread the word! We've never moved a show before, so this is a first for us. But we couldn't pass up the chance to keep the show going! We're all so in love with our guys! Here's the scoop:
At 16th Street Theater 4 weeks only! January 25 – February 17, 2008

Fridays at 7:30 PM Saturdays at 5:00 PM Saturdays at 8:00 PM Sundays at 6:00 PM BUY TICKETS ONLINE at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/25539

0 Comments on Teatro Luna's GREAT News as of 12/17/2007 1:54:00 PM
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4. Tres Tresoros

Everynight Life

Celeste Frazier Delgado, Jose Esteban Muñoz (eds.)

This book explores the varied tradition of dance throughout Latino/a America: salsa, merengue, rumba, mambo, tango, samba and norteña as a language of resistance. The editors reveal the history of these popular forms of dance as syncretic practices of African, indigenous, and mestizo people in the Americas. Much in the same way popular forms of African-American dance preserved traditional values of an oppressed people, so did the people’s of Latino/a America survive a dominant culture of of liquidation and negation. The most striking example of this is the Brazilian example, capoeira. It is both a syncretic dance practice of Yoruba devotees and a martial art. Slaves and former slaves developed capoeira as a means to resist and defend themselves. To a lesser extent, dance forms as popular as salsa, merengue, etc. reflect ancient tribal forms which celebrate the earth and body, resisting co-optation by European invaders. In fact, these dances insinuated themselves into mainstream culture and became popular themselves. They represent a kind of subversion to a Eurocentric idea of body, personal space and identity. I was fascinated by the editors’ premise that dance uses the body and its movement as a language, a code. I was reminded of the possibility to invent story by movement, by the symbolism of moving flesh.

ISBN-10: 0822319195
ISBN-13: 978-0822319191

Riverbed of Memory
Daisy Zamora

Daisy Zamora was a member of Nicaragua’s Sandinista Liberation Army. She was program director of the clandestine Radio Sandino during the revolution, and later became a Vice Minister of Culture in the revolutionary government. In Riverbed of Memory, Zamora writes poetry about the horrors of war, its causes and its aftermath. What is stunning about the book is its elliptical, subtle portrayal of its subject matter. She creates a riveting portrayal of violence and death, by inference, and it is all the more powerful because of it. I was spellbound by a writer who could capture the essence of something horrible without cliche, without beating the reader to a bloody pulp. Zamora accomplishes this with economy and simplicity. In a particularly strong piece, Zamora compares the spilled blood of a child to the first fruit of the harvest, crushed under the boot of a soldier, its pulp staining the earth. I found in Riverbed of Memory examples of how to write about strongly charged material indirectly, helping the reader to understand the enormity of catastrophe by describing the shadow it casts.

ISBN-10: 0872862739

ISBN-13: 978-0872862739

Gringa Latina: A Woman of Two Worlds
Gabriella De Ferrari

Gabriella De Ferrari is a curator, lecturer and Peruvian expatriate living in New York City.
Gringa Latina is the story of her journey between two worlds. She describes in loving detail her life in a small rural town where her father was a doctor. The reader follows De Ferrari through her home town, along its riverbank, its grove of olive trees, the sights and sounds of her mother’s kitchen. With similar detail, she describes her culture shock at the crowds of people in New York, her first subway ride, her first nervous attempts to mount and promote an exhibit. While clearly De Ferrari’s affluence protected her from the worst aspect of being a stranger in a strange land, she captures the emigre’s sense of loneliness, loss and anomie. Her language is clean and spare, and I found this book helpful in thinking about the creation of memoir as a whole, and my piece in particular. Gringa Latina uses the very personal account of one woman’s journey to tell a larger human story through the use of the particular, connection to place, and the recreation of home.

ISBN-10: 1568361459

ISBN-13: 978-1568361451


Presented by


6:30 p.m. wine and cheese reception

8-9:30 p.m. performance

Friday, Nov. 9

Chicago Dramatists

1105 W. Chicago Ave.


Call (312) 577-2801 ext. 229. Tickets are $45.

Proceeds from this event benefit the Unidas Fund of the Latina Leadership Council. No refunds or exchanges.A world premiere production, "MACHOS" is an interview-based play about contemporary masculinities. As always, Teatro Luna asks hard-hitting questions, such as: Exactly how did you learn to use the urinal? "MACHOS" presents a range of true-life stories with Teatro Luna’s trademark humor and unique Latina point-of-view.

"MACHOS" follows Teatro Luna's critically-acclaimed shows "S-E-X-OH" and "LUNATIC(A)S." It moves beyond the everyday stereotypes of gender, offering a complex look at how 50 men (and eight Latina women) learned how to be men. Performances
are drawn from interviews with 50 men nationwide and performed by an all-Latina cast in drag. After the performance there will be a reception with director Coya Paz and the actors.

Featuring Belinda Cervantes, Maritza Cervantes, Yadira Correa, Gina Cornejo, Ilana Faust,
Stephanie Gentry-Fernandez and Wendy Vargas.

Learn more about the Latina Leadership Council of Chicago Foundation for Women

Chicago Dramatists is wheelchair-accessible.
If you have other accesibility needs or questions, please contact Marisol Ybarra by Nov. 6 at (312) 577-2836 / TTY (312) 577-2803 or mybarra@cfw.org.


November 3, Saturday

¡Siempre Latina!
Gala Dinner

Garden Manor
4722 W. Armitage
Chicago, IL

$60 advance
$70 at door

Available: Mestiza 1010 W. 18 Street Chicago, IL   312 563 0132 

Early to Bed

5232 N. Sheridan Rd. Chicago, IL
773 271 1219




MARGO TAMEZ is the recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from the Arizona Commission on the Arts and a First Place Literary Award from the Frontera Literary Review. She is the author of Naked Wanting, also published by the University of Arizona Press. She is of Jumano and Lipan Apache as well as Spanish Land Grant ancestry of South Texas and currently lives in Pullman, Washington.

Friday, November 9th at 7:00 p.m. 

Antigone Books,
411 North 4th Avenue 


RAVEN EYE Written from thirteen years of journals, psychic and earthly,
this poetry maps an uprising of a borderland
indigenous woman battling forces of racism
and sexual violence against Native women and children.
This lyric collection breaks new ground, skillfully
revealing an unseen narrative of resistance on the
Mexico–U.S. border. A powerful blend of the oral
and long poem, and speaking into the realm of global
movements, these poems explore environmental injustice,
sexualized violence, and indigenous women’s lives.
These complex and necessary themes are at the
heart of award-winning poet Margo Tamez’s second
book of poetry. NAKED WANTING Speaking with the voice of the cicada and the cricket,
the raven and the crane, Margo Tamez shows us that
the earth is a vibrant network of birth, death, and rebirth—
a sacred intertwining from which we as humans have
become disconnected. Through images that remind us
of Nature’s beauty and fragility, reflections on childbirth
and children, and warnings of environmental abuse,
she brings to her poetry the insight of someone
who has experienced firsthand what happens
when our land and water are compromised.

“Margo Tamez’s poetry works like a heartsong,
it makes us brave. Her alive response to what kills
makes us want to stand up with her and sing in
the face of the enemy. . . . They say that women
at war pose the most serious threat, and so it is
that Margo Tamez’s call to battle both instills
fear and thrills us.” —Heid E. Erdrich


Juan Felipe Hererra offers a personal and illuminating perspective on this issue in his new book 187 Reasons Mexicanos Can't Cross The Border: Undocuments 1971-2007. He launches his "187 Express" at City Lights on Thursday, November 15th, 7pm, with music and spoken word, and is available for interview.

Herrera has enlisted a team of "word-callers" to join the festivities --

Emilio Robles Kirkpatrick, 12 year old wordsmith - MC
Ginny Lim, SF, Poet
Arlene Biala, Santa Clara, Poet
Margarita Robles, Fresno, Poet
Francis Wong, SF, Jazz musician
John Carlos Perea, SF, bassist
Yolanda Muñoz, San Diego, sculptor

The "Express" takes Herrera across the border states,
and up and down California in a series of
event/performances involving guest musicians and artists.

Raised in the fields of California in a family of migrant workers,
Herrera has blended art and activism for over 30 years
as a pioneer of the Chicano spoken word movement.
He has spent the last three and half decades
assembling the collection found in 187 Reasons –
at rallies, walkouts, under fire and on the run,
in cafés, under helicopters and in the midst of
thousands of marchers for civil rights and new
immigration policies. Some of the work is a result
of secret reconnaissance information given to him
by travelers in Central America as they documented
the atrocities of the military. There are sections
devoted to the first Chicano encounters and
journeys in the Mayan Indian ground of Chiapas,
now recognized globally. And there are spoofs
and sparks and lists of things that speak about
migrant Street Poets' experiences. Most provocative
is the photo album of Herrera’s family and his
journeys documenting close to a hundred
years of migrante life.

Juan Felipe Herrera is Professor of Creative Writing
at the University of California, Riverside.
Author of 23 books, he is a community arts leader
and a dynamic performer and actor.
He is the son of Mexican immigrants
and grew up in the migrant fields of California.



Children's Reading with Rene Colato

Instill the love of reading early on and bring your children,
nephews, nieces, or grandchildren to meet children's
author Rene Colato and play loteria. He will read
from his book "Playing Lotería / El juego de la lotería."

"PlayingLotería" is about a little boy who visits his
grandmother in Mexico, and with the help of la lotería,
learns a new language and how special the bond
between a boy and his grandmother can be.

SATURDAY, Nov. 3rd at 2 p.m.

Cine Sin Fin Screening

Cine Sin Fin will be screening films and videos by
aspiring independent Chicana/o filmmakers.
The purpose is to empower those who personify
and humanize the Chicana/o experience to
those who would otherwise not be familiar with it
and promote positive images of Chicanas/os in film.
There will be a panel discussions throughout the evening.
Featured Films:

The Great Tamale War
Tomoko's Kitchen
Search for the Chupacabra

Wednesday, Nov. 7th at 7 p.m.

10258 Foothill Blvd.
Lake View Terrace, CA 91342
(818) 896-1479
Fax: (818) 896-1489

Lisa Alvarado

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5. A Note fromTeatro Luna

Teatro Luna is so excited to share with you the projects we have coming up! We hope you can come and share in the excitement with us! We are performing a new short play from Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of Teatro Luna, Tanya Saracho, SURFACE DAY, commissioned by the Chicago Humanities Festival, in collaboration with Steppenwolf Theatre on Saturday October 27th.

We are also performing S-E-X-OH! at the University of Chicago on Friday October 26th at 6:00pm. MACHOS, our newest ensemble built show opens in just under weeks, with previews beginning 5 November 2007, and Opening Night taking place on Thursday 8 November 2007. Read on to see how you can get involved and support Teatro Luna on these and other artistic endeavors. Happy Halloween!

SURFACE DAY. A new short play by Tanya Saracho. Commissioned by the Chicago Humanities Festival. A collaboration between Steppenwolf Theatre and Teatro Luna Theatre Company Saturday, October 27th @ Steppenwolf Theatre. Saracho is the Co-Founder of Teatro Luna and a resident playwright at Chicago Dramatists. She is the author of QUITA MITOS, OUR LADY OF THE UNDERPASS, and KITA Y FERNANDA. Performances will be followed by discussion among the playwrights, creative team members, and other special guests.

Teatro Luna...Anda performs S-E-X-OH! at the University of Chicago, Friday October 26th 2007!

MACHOS... Teatro Luna's newest ensemble built show opens in November @ Chicago Dramatists!


Want to get involved? Here are some ways:

-Come to Proyecto Latina or OYE-LISTEN, two free events we offer every month/every other month.

-Are you proactive, enthusiastic, and love Teatro Luna? If yes, then talk to us about joining our Board! With your support we can continue to grow and produce new work.
-Join our Myspace and Facebook


Six writers were commissioned by the Chicago Humanities Festival, in collaboration with Steppenwolf Theatre to write about climate change. SURFACE DAY is what Tanya Saracho A. came up with.The Lovely and Talented Coya Paz co-directs the piece.

Come and see Teatro Luna ensemble members Belinda Cervantes and Gina Cornejo, with new LUNA friend, Carlo Garcia, as they play post apocalyptic citizens of a new territory called AMEXICA...where "Caucos" (whites) are the minority, Spanglish is the national tongue and NOTHING grows.

Saturday, October 27 | 3pm and 7:30 pm
Upstairs Studio @ Steppenwolf Theatre Company
1650 N. Halsted St.
Tickets $5


As part of our annual Caras de América—Latina/o Heritage Month Celebration, the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs is proud to present S-E-X-Oh!, a witty and provocative cabaret-style show performed by members of Teatro Luna, Chicago's first and only all-Latina Theater company. S-E-X-Oh! offers a bold new look at Latina sexuality from the point of view of six very different Latina women. Based on true life stories and a few strategic re-imaginings, it uses Teatro Luna's trademark ensemble-based aesthetic to enter into the taboo terrain of sex, gender, and sexuality. The themes are universal, crossing cultural barriers, and presented with humor and brutal honesty.

The play will begin promptly at

Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Biological Sciences Learning Center
Room 109
924 East 57th St.
Room 109

Chicago IL 60637

Stay after the play for an exciting Q&A session and reception!

This show is co-sponsored by The Center for Latin American Studies (CLAS) and Resources for Sexual Violence Prevention (RSVP).

Lisa Alvarado

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6. Teatro Luna --Bright, Bright Light

Teatro Luna was founded in June 2000 by Coya Paz and Tanya Saracho, with an original ensemble of ten women from diverse Latina/Hispana backgrounds. They came together because they realized that the stories and experiences of Latina/Hispana women were undervalued and underrepresented not only on the Chicago stage, but beyond. Many of them had similar experiences of being asked to perform stereotyped images of that were often one-dimensional and, at times, offensive: spicy sexpots, voiceless maids, pregnant gangbangers, timid "illegal" immigrants, etc. They were also concerned that the few parts written for Latina women often went to non-Latina actresses. They felt that they had to do something. Their answer was Teatro Luna, Chicago's first and only all-Latina theater.

En el Futuro, they plan to perform published pieces and original works by new and established Playwrights along with their own original works. Teatro Luna is constantly looking for new works written by Latinas/Hispanas or about Latina/Hispana women.

If you'd like to make a submission, send a copy of your script to Reading Series Director, Teatro Luna, 5215 N. Ravenswood, Suite #210, Chicago, IL 60640 or email her at nrey1@msn.com.
They look forward to nurturing la voz de la mujer Latina inside their artistic home, to giving Latina/Hispanas of all backgrounds an opportunity to tell their story.

In the meantime, a large percentage of their energia is spent on creating original pieces, developed by the ensemble. This has prompted the creation of the "Teatro Luna Developement Process." Poco a poco, the ensemble developed its own vocabulary and artistic vision which improves with every project. The ever changing process is described below. Ensemble members share stories, memories, ideas and thoughts with each other in a brainstorming session.

Members then bring in written stories, monologues, or more specific research to propose specific ideas for pieces.

During workshop/rehearsal, members divide into smaller groups (2-4 people) and experiment with adding movement, chorus, additional characters and other stylistic devices to the stories. The responsibility of these smaller groups is to find two or more dramatically different approaches to present the idea/story.

Versions of the story are "presented" or "pitched" to the rest of the ensemble, who critique and comment on the proposal. Often, different actresses will "try on" the same role to further expand and explore the possibilities of the subject and style of the piece.

Once the ensemble has chosen a "format", the scene is improvised several times (with the game of "character musical chairs" described above). The women who are watching write down character traits, story concept and themes, and any dialogue that stands out (at times particularly lively workshops have been videotaped).

5 The scenes are then scripted by an ensemble member and presented to the group in an "official" version.

6 Creating doesn't stop there. The rehearsal process remains open. Although actors work from the script in a relatively traditional manner, the entire process involves on-going discussion and collaboration from the ensemble. A couple of times, a finished scene or two were not finalized until a few hours before opening.

7 This is the "official" teatro luna process when developing original works, but they continue to refine and expand it to fit their needs, practicing our techniques in on-going workshops that include both established Teatro Luna members and newer Artistic Associates and Friends.


COYA PAZ (co-founder/co-Artistic Director) was raised in Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Columbia, and Brazil, and moved permanently to the United States in the late 1980's. She is a Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Performance Studies at Northwestern University, where she also holds her MA. She has collaborated with Teatro Luna on all of our ensemble built projects (Generic Latina, Dejame Contarte/Let Me Tell You, The Maria Chronicles and S-E-X-Oh!) Additional Chicago acting credits include Impassioned Embraces, Etta Jenks, Death of a Salesman and Baby Boom En El Paraiso.

Directing credits include The Maria Chronicles and S-e-x-Oh! (with Tanya Saracho), The Drag King Rooftop Karaoke Hootchie Cootchie No Name Show and Musical Latin Extravaganza (with Michelle Campbell), Diane Herrera's The Dress and Marisabel Suarez's Three Days (part of Teatro Luna's Sólo Latinas Project). She has appeared in numerous independent film and performance projects, and enjoys singing in the shower. Coya is a contributor to the Oxford University Encyclopedia of Latino/as in the United States, and is committed to using performance as a strategy for social and individual change.

TANYA SARACHO (cofounder/co_Artistic Director) is a proud Co-Founder of TEATRO LUNA: Chicago's All-Latina Theater Ensemble and a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists. She was born in Sinaloa, Mexico and moved to Texas in the late 80's. Saracho attended Boston University where three of her plays, Miss Norma and the Alligator, Maya Takes a Moonbath and La Dueña, received Premiers. Tanya has studied writing with Maria Irene Fornes (Latin Am. Writers Retreat), Derek Wolcott, Kate Snodgrass and Claudia Allen. In Chicago, La Dueña received a staged reading at the Tony-Award-winning, Victory Gardens Theatre. Also while in Chicago, her writing has been featured in all of Teatro Luna's ensemble-built works including Generic Latina, Dejame Contarte, The Maria Chronicles, SOLO Latinas and S-E-X-Oh! Saracho's play Kita y Fernanda received a full production at Luna in early 2003, along with a reading at Repertorio Español while a finalist for the 2003 Nuestras Voces playwrighting competition. Other Awards include: The Ofner Prize given by the Goodman Theatre and Christopher B. Wolk Award at Abingdon Theatre in NYC (finalist).

Directing (and co-directing) credits include: The remount of Generic Latina, Piece of Ass for Estrogenfest and The Maria Chronicles for both the Goodman's Latino Theater Festival and the critically acclaimed full-length run at Teatro Luna, S-e-x-Oh!, Que Bonita Bandera and Three Days for SÓLO Latinas, and the upcoming Knowhatimean written by Idris Goodwin and Kevin Coval.

Chicago acting credits include: Sandra in Living Out with American Theatre Co./Teatro Vista, Vecina in Electricidad at the Goodman Theatre, The Angel in Angels in America, and Martirio in La Casa De Bernarda Alba with Aguijon Theater. In the winter of 2005, Saracho premiered her solo play To Red Stick at Chicago Dramatists, in Teatro Luna's critically acclaimed evening of solo work, SÓLO Latinas, which was later remounted in the 2005 Theatre-On-The-Lake Season. Tanya's voice can be heard around the country in many radio and television commercials.

DANA CRUZ (artistic ensemble) loves the ladies de Teatro Luna and is excited to team up with them. Recent Chicago credits include the Let the Eagle Fly at the Goodman's Latino Theater Festival, Maria Chronicles, and S-E-X-Oh! with Teatro Luna and Generic Latina with the touring company Teatro Luna... Anda, CityGirl & Game/Place/Show with the Neofuturists and Acts of Mercy by John Michael Garces with Flushpuppy Productions to name a few. She has performed professionally with companies in Chicago, New York and Boston and is currently teaching theater at Our Lady of Tepeyac High School and working as a massage therapist in Evanston, IL. She is an Aries. She hates talking about herself in the third person and is oh so excited to be marrying the T-man on June 2005.

MIRANDA GONZALEZ (artistic ensemble/touring director) is an original founding member of Luna. Teatro Luna credits include the original production of Generic Latina, Probadita, Mas Probadita, both the New York and Chicago mountings of Dejame Contarte, SOLO Latinas and S-E-X-Oh! She has appeared in numerous industrials and commercials in the midwest, as well as the dearly departed Joan Cusack television series What About Joan? where she played a recurring role. Miranda is a loan officer and mother by day, and a Lunatica by night.

suzette MAYOBRE(artistic ensemble) comes to us from the sunny state of Florida, where after a life of sun and fun, she decided to move to the bitter cold of Chicago! Fortunately, she met the wonderful ladies of Teatro Luna, who have made the transition easier and have provided her with numerous opportunities to nurture her art. Her roots in entertainment were planted while at the University of Miami, where she co-hosted a live, weekly morning show, worked at the university radio station, and produced a feature-length documentary entitled Last Night In Cuba, which she holds very dear to her heart. After receiving her degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Miami, she decided that she wanted to pursue her acting. She has worked on several commercials, industrials, voice overs, independent films and television, most recently as a guest reporter for Control, a Univision Network program. Her theater credits includes work with Teatro Luna, Teatro Vista, Salsation! and Eclipse Theatre among others.

maritza Cervantes (artistic ensemble) is a Mexican-American actress/musician/artist born and raised in Chicago. Past credits include: Al son..que me toques Lorca La Molecula Artistica: Nido del Mar, La Casa De Bernarda Alba, Aguijon Theatre, Polaroid Stories, En Mortem Flush Puppy Productions, and S-E-X-Oh! with Teatro Luna. Maritza is Co-founder of the acoustic/hip-hop/soul influenced musical outfit the LUNA BLUES MACHINE.

yadira CORREA (artistic ensemble) Crazy curly haired Puertorican who's acting credits include: Vagina Monologues, For Colored Girls/Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enough, María Chronicles, Sketchbook and S-E-X-Oh! yco76@hotmail.com


November - December 2007 at the Chicago Dramatists Teatro Luna is doing WHAT???? This fall, presentamos A new play by Teatro Luna.

MACHOS: Be a Man?...
Men. Women. Women dressed as men. Teatro Luna, Chicago's All-Latina Theater Company, announces the world premiere of MACHOS, an interview based play about contemporary masculinities. In 2006, frustrated with boyfriends, brothers, and bosses, the company of Latina women set out to answer the question: what are men really thinking?

The result is MACHOS, a performance drawn from interviews with 50 men nationwide and performed by an all-Latina cast in drag. From a young man's relationship with his correctional officer father to man cheating on his wife with himself, to an epic confrontation between fraternity brothers, MACHOS presents a range of true-life stories with Teatro Luna's trademark humor and unique Latina point of view.

MACHOS follows the critically acclaimed shows S-E-X-OH and LUNATIC(A)S and moves beyond the everyday stereotypes of gender, offering a complex look at how 50 men (and eight Latina women) learned how to be men. As always, Teatro Luna is cheeky, straightforward, and willing to ask even the most hard hitting questions: exactly how did you learn to use a urinal? MACHOS is presented In English with a sprinkle of Spanish.

Developed and directed by Coya Paz . Created by El Teatro Luna. Coya Paz is the Co-Artistic Director of Teatro Luna, and was named one of UR Magazine's 30 Under 30 in 2005 and one of GO NYC! Magazine's 100 Women We Love in 2007. She was the 2006-2007 Artist-In-Residence at the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture. Previous collaborations with Teatro Luna include Generic Latina, Dejame Contarte, The Maria Chronicles, and S-e-x-Oh!

Chicago Dramatists 1105 W Chicago Ave Chicago, Il 60622 Previews: November 5, 6, 7 @ 7:00 pm Runs: November 8th 0 December 16th 2007 Thursdays, Fridays, & Saturdays at 7:30 pm & Sundays at 6:00 pm

For more information, please call 773-878-LUNA
or email us at: info@teatroluna.org


Tia Chucha's Centro Cultural & Bookstore

A Sentence with the District
A compelling collection of essays based on the actual experience of a former at-risk youth who became an inspired teacher at his alma mater high school in the San Fernando Valley. The stories reveal a moving glimpse into LAUSD, the nation's second largest school district, which repeatedly fails students of color and those on the front lines -- classroom teachers. The author sheds insight from a first person point of view that others, including administrators, dare not mention. In its frank and passionate tone, the book raises key issues that underscore a dire need for change.

SATURDAY Oct. 27th at 1p.m.
Tia Chucha's Centro Cultural & Bookstore
10258 Foothill Blvd.
Lake View Terrace, California 91342

Celebrate with Amigas Latinas!


November 3, Saturday

¡Siempre Latina!
Gala Dinner

Garden Manor

4722 W. Armitage
Chicago, IL
$60 advance
$70 at door


1010 W. 18 Street Chicago, IL
312 563 0132

Early to Bed
5232 N. Sheridan Rd. Chicago, IL
773 271 1219

Lisa Alvarado

2 Comments on Teatro Luna --Bright, Bright Light, last added: 10/26/2007
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7. Dancing in the Flames: The Dark Goddess

Marion Woodman is a Jungian analyst—and is one of the most inspiring voices in the global movement for peace. Here she joins forces with Elinor Dickson, Director of Psychological Services at St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto to produce an informed and penetrating investigation of a source of spiritual and creative power, not popular in Western circles. In Dancing in the Flames, they point to a constellation of archetypal ideas which they hope will be a source to inspire and inform: the mythical complex of the Dark Goddess. Their book operates on two levels, as a guide for individual transformation and ultimately transforming society.

The core of the book is a cluster of chapters using psychoanalytic material that draws on the mythology of the Dark Goddess. Mind you, the frame of reference is European, but Woodman does attempt to bring in a non-Western perspective, honoring as best she can the thousand years of Hindi veneration to Kali, the root source for this archetype.

At a broad-brush level, this initially involved the matriarchal phase, a belief in a living world where everything in nature held spirit-life flowing from source, the Great Mother. This was followed by the emergence of a separate. individual 'self', then the formation patriarchal and hierarchical power structures.

Throughout the early part of this history, the archetype of this Goddess progressively is split off more and more from that of the Great Mother, emerging as a her polar opposite---killer, and scourge. In reality, it's the cleansing aspect of the Good/Bountiful/Great Mother. The split of the Great Mother vs. Dark Mother mirrors that schism between matriarchy and patriarchy, the body and the spirit.

The authors make the case that in the period that followed, both the Great Mother and the Goddess are repressed, and driven into the "murky depths of our unconscious." Yet the culture of the Goddess lives on, underground, in succeeding centuries. It eventually finds expression, despite repression, in the form of the Black Virgin from the twelfth century onwards. And I would argue, our own veneration of La Virgen, of Tonatzin, who survived colonization, a remains a vital life force in the Chicano/Mejicano soul and psyche.

The authors make an impassioned case that society as a whole must reclaim the Dark Goddess. To underscore, they turn to personal analytic material, allowing the reader to make their own contact with the goddess archetype. The mythological aspects of Virgin, Mother and Crone, making up the European triple goddess, are followed through their appearance in the therapies of both men and women, these images used as tools in the process of personal evolution. In my experience of Eurocentric, new-age feminism, its subtle racism links creativity/goodness with the idea of light and so I found it powerful and liberating to be reminded of the imagery of the holy darkness, its power to cleanse, nourish and renew.

This idea of darkness, again, is no stranger to indigenous ideas of the Mother--She Who Is. I have a personal source of connection to the Santeria/Yoruba deity of Oya Yansa. Oya is also also Dark Goddess, keeper of the whirlwind, sweeping clean all that is decayed, corrupt. It was important for me to reframe my own ideas of Mother, particularly in contrast to the long-suffering Virgin of my youth. This book was a thought-provoking resource, stirring up a fleshy, full-bodied, powerful female deity, one with deep hunger, deep ability to consume, transmute and transform.

The authors give a picture of integration inspired by the qualities of the Dark Goddess, a process in which fear of death, fear of nature, and fear of our own femininity (whether we are men or women) are reconciled in the dark. They stress the dangers of yearning for a world of "pure" spirit and "light," a state where in our yearning for perfection, we confuse a certain kind of "perfection" with wholeness.

I would further challenge the notion of light equaling perfection---light without the regenerative power of darkness is half of what is and only half. And under the harshness of unending, unshrinking light, all fades and withers away, spent beyond resources, starving for rest, for the dream world, for losing oneself and finding the body made anew.

One of the most interesting parts in the book subdivides the process according to the traditional chakra system, while still basing the account firmly on the actual material of analysis. From this viewpoint, integration is seen as a process of “building the subtle body,” of embodying spirit in a complete and integrated way.

The key step in this process, for the individual, involves the recognition of our own autonomy, the acceptance of ourselves, and the finding of our own voice. For this to happen, "it takes great resolve to enter the darkness of our own chaos, to give up the familiar path and begin to trust in our own experience. The recognition and unconditional love of oneself is never a selfish journey."

It's a journey of seeking awareness, increasing confluence between those things we normally separate as "physical" and "spiritual." At the end, the book returns to the societal level, where the authors’ believe the protests of the Sixties "were the seeds, at a culturally recognized level, of a movement based on hope for a more meaningful existence.... What began as a protest has become a challenge, a challenge that will involve not only technology, but a new understanding of human mythology."

Depending on how we choose to phrase it, either ideas of ' science' must be revamped to include experiencing this relatively unused 'female' approach, or needs to be blended into a larger view that gives equal status to this view. The authors’ account at the end gives us a start -- some tools that may enable us to do this. They give us immense hope, and also a profound challenge. This new vision is not one that we can dream up intellectually: it can be reached only by transformation, only if we "throw ourselves into the flames and dance in the refining fire..."

Our traditional ideas of 'science' stresses the intellect, the rational—in archetypal terms, a 'masculine' construct. It operates with ideas of impersonal, 'objective' discovery and 'absolute' truth. While it's an important way of knowing, it has limits as a basis for a new world view. There are deep questions that emerge. How do we construct gender and identity? How are those concepts linked to to behaviors like violence and passivity? How can we integrate complicated, contradictory ideas of male/female that include ‘dark’ and healing forces in both?

This book kept me up at night. It was another piece of encouragement to let go, to delve deep, and look at what's revealed without flinching. I'm always on the lookout for things that will strengthen me, as well as shake me up. The themes of violence, sexualized violence in particular, are shot through the fabric of this American life, and to ignore them is one darkness I find unacceptable. Dancing in the Flames provides a kind of comfort, as well as a challenge.

ISBN-10: 1570623139
ISBN-13: 978-1570623134


Presented by


Latina Leadership Council

An Evening with

6:30 p.m. wine and cheese reception
8-9:30 p.m. performance
Friday, Nov. 9
Chicago Dramatists
1105 W. Chicago Ave.

all (312) 577-2801 ext. 229. Tickets are $45.

Proceeds from this event benefit the Unidas Fund
of the Latina Leadership Council.
No refunds or exchanges.

A world premiere production, "MACHOS"
is an interview-based play about
contemporary masculinities.
As always, Teatro Luna asks
hard-hitting questions, such as:
Exactly how did you learn to use the urinal?

"MACHOS" presents a range of true-life stories
with Teatro Luna’s trademark humor and unique
Latina point-of-view. "MACHOS" follows
Teatro Luna's critically-acclaimed shows
"S-E-X-OH" and "LUNATIC(A)S."
It moves beyond the everyday stereotypes
of gender, offering a complex look at how 50 men
(and eight Latina women) learned how to be men.
Performances are drawn from interviews
with 50 men nationwideand performed
by an all-Latina cast in drag.
After the performancethere will
be a reception with director Coya Paz and the actors.

Featuring Belinda Cervantes,
Maritza Cervantes,
Yadira Correa,
Gina Cornejo,
Ilana Faust,
Stephanie Gentry-Fernandez
and Wendy Vargas.

Learn more about the Latina Leadership Council
of Chicago Foundation for Women.

Chicago Dramatists is wheelchair-accessible.
If you have other accesibility needs or questions,
please contact Marisol Ybarra by Nov. 6 at
(312) 577-2836 / TTY (312) 577-2803 or


The 17th Annual Gwendolyn Brooks
Conference on Black Literature and Creative Writing

Fine Fury: Celebrating Gwendolyn Brooks at 90
October 17-20 2007 Chicago State University

As for that other kind of kindness,
if there is milk it must be mindful.
The milkofhumankindness must be mindful
as wily wines.
Must be fine fury.
Must be mega, must be main.

-- from Young Afrikans (of the furious)
by Gwendolyn Brook

Sonia Sanchez
Martin Espada
Ed Roberson
Tayari Jones
Donda West
Cheryl Clarke
Julius E. Thompson
Haki R. Madhubuti
Sterling Plumpp
Angela Jackson
Sandra Jackson-Opoku
Margo Crawford
Camille Dungy
Jacqueline Jones LaMon
Evie Shockley
Adrian Matejka
Gregory Pardlo
Randall Horton
Kelly Norman Ellis
Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu
Bayo Ojikutu
Kalisha Buchanon

Workshops by Martin Espada and others.
For registration information visit
www.csu.edu/gwendolynbrooks or call 773-995-3750

Lisa Alvarado

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8. News From Teatro Luna

OYE-LISTEN! A Bi-monthly Performance Series

About the performance and presenting artists -
Sharmili Majmudar & Amisha Patel, Dawn Herrera/Terry

Teatro Luna and Jane Addams Hull-House Museum join forces to showcase new works by emerging, Chicago-based performing artists. This collaboration aims to provide women artists of color a space to share personal stories and reflect on contemporary social issues facing their community. By remaining true to the lives and experiences of women of color, this series creates bridges among Chicago ethnic communities.

OYE-LISTEN! MONDAY, September 24, 7-9pm

Our Living by Sharmili Majmudar & Amisha Patel
Our Living a collaborative spoken word piece with musical background written and performed by two Gujarati Indian American women that interweaves our experiences and explores identity, sexism, racism, colonization, and re-emergence through reclaiming our true selves. In this piece, we remind ourselves of how our living depends on each other, despite and in the face of the oppression we experience. Through poetry, we reclaim truth and each other.

PORTALES: Mitologia Subjetiva (Matrilineal) by Dawn Herrera/Terry
Something between monologue and performance, PORTALES is a gently surreal portrait of a personal history, offering one possible account of the how borders may be internalized and inhabited. A work in progress, PORTALES will eventually weave together more strands of family narrative to further explore physical, cultural, emotional and spiritual legacies.

For more information about the artists, please visit: www.hullhousemuseum.org.

7pm - 8:40pm Performance
8:45pm - 9:00pm Post-show discussion
Jane Addams Hull-House Museum
Residents' Dining Hall
800 S. Halsted St, Chicago, IL

This is the third event in the series; the first two were standing room only:

make your reservation soon!

This event is FREE. Light refreshments will be served.

Reservations are recommended,
call 312.413.5353
This event is ADA accessible. If you have a disability and need additional accommodations to attend this event, please inform us at the time of reservation

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9. Coco Fusco -- English Is Broken Here: Notes on Cultural Fusion in the Americas-

Coco Fusco

In this series of essays, Fusco concentrates on examining the work of Latino/a performance artists born in the U.S., and the themes of “otherness” and culture clash. Performers such as Andres Serrano, Laura Aguilar, and Fusco’s longtime collaborator, Guillermo Gomez-Pena, are held up to the light for close consideration.

In the essay targeting her collaboration with Gomez-Pena, she details a performance done in public venues (museums, municipal buildings) where she and Gomez-Pena created a living exhibit, posing as “specimens” of a fictional indigenous tribe. They displayed themselves in a cage, with dress and talismans gleaned from Pan-Latino/a and popular culture. Her commentary on the experience, on being the observed ”other,” and what she saw as the fascination of the predominately Anglo audience as observer, underscored the themes of objectification and the blurring of public and private.

I had mixed feeling in reading about this performance. On the one hand, I think it was a bold and important artistic move to skewer the dominant culture's idea of 'preservation' and 'curation ,' to challenge it as a kind of pandering to that culture's fascination with they perceive as the 'exotic' indigenous. Never mind that in many cases, these exhibits are only possible as a direct result of colonialism, genocidal practices, and grave robbing. How different is Fusco's and Gomez-Pena's living exhibit behind bars from the guided tours held on the the rez, or in barrios, in farm worker camps?

I wonder to what extent the audience grasped that under the rubric of "Latino," there exists hundreds of complex societies, with a heterogeneity of language, practices, rituals. I'm concerned that the work only engenders the knee-jerk, superficial shudder of guilt in primarily white, middle-class audiences.

In the post-performance discussions of Housekeeper's Diary, the comments from some middle-class people reveal discomfort and their own lack of knowledge as to how to even treat their own maids in a more real, humane way. But there are also comments about what is the vitality and vibrancy of working people--comments about the inherent dignity they sense, despite an external objectification. This, to me is the kind of dialog and engagement I find most satisfying as a performer.

While those points of divergence are significant, I felt I had read something that will challenge me to keep thinking about the political context of performance. One last reservation with this book was Fusco’s tendency make referential comments about to different artists, without always placing them in context. This can make for a limited appreciation of the the work as a whole, as well as perpetuate an unfortunate tendency of performance artists conversing amongst themselves. (Particularly since Fusco plumbs the legacy of imperialism, colonialism in her work, it strikes me as odd that she gears her writing to the art intelligentsia. ) It's a challenge, however, worth the effort of cross-referencing and research for the reader.

ISBN-10: 1565842456
ISBN-13: 978-1565842458


Una Notita Del Teatro Luna (A Note from Teatro Luna)

Teatro Luna has a VERY exciting show opening in early November. It is called Machos, and it is based on interviews with 50 diverse men nationwide. Our ensemble members will be performing as men (we have a movement coach and everything) talking about their lives, their work, and, of course, women. If you'd like to bring a group of students to see the show, please contact info@teatroluna.org. We'd be happy to arrange a group rate, a post-show discussion, or even a classroom visit.

Volunteers Wanted!!!

We desperately need volunteers to help us transcribe the last few interviews. Transcription is a time-consuming, tedious process, but nothing could help us more as we work to finalize our script. We're looking for people who can dedicate 10-12 hours in the next week - a lot of ask, we know! In exchange, we will offer you your choice of $50, 4 tickets to MACHOS, or 2 VIP tickets to a MACHOS special event. And of course, a thank you in the program and our undying love. Well, at least MY undying love. I can't speak for everyone. if this sounds like something you can commit to, please e-mail Belinda at bcervantes@teatroluna.org.

Oye-Listen! Call for Submissions for September & November

So far, OYE-LISTEN! - a new collaboration between Teatro Luna and Jane Addams Hull-House Museum- has been a blast. Our June and July series had packed houses and vibrant performances from Yolanda Nieves, Sandra Santiago-Posadas, Lani Montreal, Francis Allende-Pellot, Gesel Mason, Toni Asante Lightfoot, Anida Yoeu Ali, Cristal Sabbagh, Andrea Wukitsch, Keiko Johnson and more. There's still time to join the fun! We are currently seeking performers for slots in September and November.

For submission guidelines or questions, please email to submissions@teatroluna.org.

Proyecto Latina - AUGUST 20th

The next Proyecto Latina is on Monday, August 20th @ 7 p.m. Our August feature is Stephanie Gentry-Fernandez, she shares from her collection of poems. As always there will also be Chisme box and open-mic . Free. Join us at Tianguis, 2003 S. Damen.

Stephanie Gentry-Fernandez A native of Chicago's South Side, has been involved with a number of organizations including Teatro Luna, About Face Theater, and el Cafe Teatro Batey Urbano. Stephanie has facilitated journaling and poetry workshops for young incarcerated women and adult female survivors of domestic violence. She moved back home to Chicago after a two and a half year stint in the hippy Bay Area. Her work addresses issues like anti-oppression, survival, healing, and hope. Stephanie is currently working as Associate Director of the Chicago Freedom School.

About Proyecto Latina: Proyecto Latina is a collaborative between Teatro Luna, Tianguis, and Mariposa Atomica Ink. We are excited about showcasing Latina talent and are always seeking outgoing Latina poets and performers for our monthly open mic series. Proyecto Latina takes place the third Monday of every month. Its an open mic so everything's game: Poetry, spoken word, music, monologues, shorts y en el idioma que prefieras. And if you're too shy to get on stage come and be one of the lucky spectators.

***Proyecto Latina takes place the 3rd Monday of every month.
Held at Tianguis Books
(2003 S. Damen, Chicago, IL)***

Teatro Luna Upcoming Season!

Get ready for a whole year of Teatro Luna! We have three brand new shows coming up.

Machos, a new ensemble performance based on interviews with men nationwide, opens November 8th. Solo Tu, a collection of four solo plays about four very different women, opens February 28, 2008. Restaurant Spanish, an ensemble play about immigration and communication, opens late summer (dates TBA).

Visit us at www.teatroluna.org or www.myspace.com/teatroluna

Lisa Alvarado

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10. Noticias de Teatro Luna

Teatro Luna was founded in June 2000 by Coya Paz and Tanya Saracho, with an original ensemble of ten women from diverse Latina/Hispana backgrounds. We came together because we realized that the stories and experiences of Latina/Hispana women were undervalued and underrepresented not only on the Chicago stage, but beyond.

Many of us had similar experiences of being asked to perform stereotyped images of ourselves that were often one-dimensional and, at times, offensive: spicy sexpots, voiceless maids, pregnant gangbangers, timid "illegal" immigrants, etc. We were also concerned that the few parts written for Latina women often went to non-Latina actresses. We felt that we had to do something. Our answer was Teatro Luna, Chicago's first and only all-Latina theater.


Teatro Luna, Chicago’s only all-Latina Theater company is pleased to announce the world premiere of LUNATIC(a)S, a new play about women’s everyday insanity.


From Chicago-style road rage to an obsession with catching muggers, LUNATICAS uses Teatro Luna’s trademark humor and honesty to tell a truth we don’t always want to tell: Sometimes, we’re just a little bit crazy.

Directed and developed by award-winning playwright Tanya Saracho,
LUNATIC(a)S tackles Teatro Luna’s namesake The Moon (La Luna) and places our true-life stories in the context of myths and superstitions about women, Latinas, and the moon.

LUNATIC(a)S follows Teatro Luna’s critically acclaimed shows Quita Mitos and S-e-x-Oh!, bringing a range of Latina stories to light. Reimagining the Mayan goddess lx Chel as a modern day urban Latina, LUNATIC(a)S moves from the mythical (the moon is always female) to the serious (violent mothers) to the tragically hilarious (the slow slide from jealous girlfriend to bonafide stalker). As always, Teatro Luna is cheeky, straightforward, and willing to tell even the most outrageous secrets about our Latina lives.

Where: Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago, Chicago, IL

When: PREVIEWS: June 1st, 2nd and 3rd 2007 || OPENING: Thursday June 7th, 2007 || RUNS FROM: June 7th to July 15, 2007 (Thursdays @ 7:30pm, Fridays and Saturdays @ 8pm, and Sundays @ 3pm)

Who: PERFORMED: by Belinda Cervantes, Maritza Cervantes, Gina Cornejo, Yadira Correa, Miranda Gonzalez, and Suzette Mayobre. DIRECTED AND DEVELOPED BY: Tanya Saracho

How Much?: PREVIEWS: $10, $7 Students (ID required) || GENERAL: $15, $10 Students (ID required), Groups of 8 or more, $12

For Reservations: Call 773-878-LUNA

For more information visit: www.teatroluna.org

As all Teatro Luna shows, LUNATIC(a)S is performed in English with a sprinkle of Spanish.

Important note: This show features frank discussion about intimate topics as well as images of real women’s bodies and may not be appropriate for younger audiences.

About Teatro Luna:

Teatro Luna is Chicago’s first and only all-Latina theater ensemble dedicated to creating work that showcases the talents of Latina/Hispana artists. Founded by Tanya Saracho and Coya Paz in 2000, Teatro Luna is dedicated to expanding the range of Latina/Hispana roles visible on the Chicago stage and beyond. Previous shows include Generic Latina, Dejame Contarte, Kita y Fernanda, The Maria Chronicles at Theatre on the Lake, and Solo Latinas at Chicago Dramatists. In addition, Teatro Luna is frequently asked to bring their trademark blend of ensemble performances to theatres, universities and festivals across the county. www.teatroluna.org


Teatro Luna announces auditions for our fall run of MACHOS, an interview based project drawn from conversations with men all across the country.
We are looking for Latina/Hispana performers of all ages who are comfortable and able to play MEN. Previous performance experience is a plus, but not mandatory.

Performers must be able to commit to the following dates:

Performances Thursdays through Sundays,
November 1-Dec 15th.
Rehearsals Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays
starting September 4th.
Performance/writing workshops twice a week (TBD)
June 15-July 15th

Auditions for Machos will be held June 2nd, between 10am and 2pm. To schedule an audition, please e-mail coyapaz@teatroluna.org with your preferred time (15 minute slots) and a phone number where you can be reached.

To audition:
-Please come dressed to show us that you can perform as a man. We are looking beyond the stereotypes, so whatever that means to you! (There is a changing room available if you would like to change before or after your audition.)

-Please prepare a short (1-2 minutes MAX) original piece - it can be a joke, a story, some chisme, a monologue, a poem, lo que sea - we just want to get a sense of what you have to say and how you say it! Pieces should be memorized if possible.

-Please bring a recent headshot or photo, and a copy of your resume.
Teatro Luna is Chicago's first and only all-Latina theater company. Visit us on the web at www.teatroluna.org and don't miss our upcoming show Lunatic(a)s, playing June 1-July 15th at Chicago Dramatists.

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