Here’s the press release from Teatro Vista:
CHICAGO’S TEATRO VISTA ANNOUNCES 2011-2012 SEASON
CHICAGO’S LARGEST LATINO THEATER TO INTRODUCE ITS NEWEST RESIDENT WRITER CANDIDO TIRADO WITH TWO PLAYS –MOMMA’S BOYZ (RE-SET IN CHICAGO) AND THE WORLD PREMIERE OF FISH MEN, A MULTI-ETHNIC ENSEMBLE TOUR-DE-FORCE – PLUS LUIS ALFARO’S OEDIPUS EL REY, A CHICANO TAKE ON THE MOTHER OF ALL TRAGEDIES
CHICAGO, April 21, 2011 – Teatro Vista announced today the company will welcome nationally acclaimed Latino writer Cándido Tirado as its newest resident playwright by opening its 2011-2012 season with one of his most acclaimed works, Momma’s Boyz, and closing it with the world premiere of Fish Men—the second production in the company’s three-year producing partnership with Goodman Theatre. Insert Luis Alfaro’s hot Chicano take on the mother of all tragedies Oedipus el Rey in between, and Teatro Vista’s 2011-2102 line-up promises to be one of the company’s most ambitious seasons in its 21-year-history.
An updated version of Momma’s Boyz, which Tirado is re-setting in Chicago for its Teatro Vista debut, kicks off Chicago’s largest Equity Latino theater’s upcoming season, October 23–December 4, 2011 at Chicago Dramatists, directed by Teatro Vista ensemble member Ricardo Gutierrez.
Next, Teatro Vista will stage the Chicago premiere of Oedipus el Rey, Luis Alfaro’s sizzling Chicano version of the classic Greek tale set in a modern-day East LA barrio, next February and March in a venue to be announced.
For Teatro Vista’s 2011-2012 finale, artistic director Edward Torres will make his Goodman directorial debut with the world premiere of Tirado’s Fish Men, a multi-ethnic, multi-cast, multi-generational tour-de-force about a high stakes game of urban chess hustlers set in New York’s Washington Square Park. Teatro Vista’s production of Fish Men will make its Chicago premiere at Goodman Theatre April 7-May 6, 2012 as part of Teatro Vista’s newly announced three-year producing partnership with the Goodman.
“Latino culture exists as the intersection of many different cultures and races…European, African, Chinese, indigenous, South, Central, Caribbean and North American. All have influences over what it means to be Latino, and nobody redefines the term more clearly than Luis Alfaro and our newest resident writer Cándido Tirado, who we are so excited to welcome into the Teatro Vista family this season,” said artistic director Edward Torres. “So ‘cultural intersections’ is the theme for our 21st season, because it syncs right up with our mission – to use the stage to engage, connect, and challenge audience members via stories that reflect the universality of our humanity, but which are told from the Latino perspective.”
The ideal way to secure the best seats at the lowest prices while simultaneously supporting professional Latino theater in Chicago is to purchase a Teatro Vista 2011-2012 Season Flex Pass, only $75 for three shows, now on sale at teatrovista.org or by calling 312.666.4659. Single tickets for each show will go on sale at staggered dates beginning September 15, 2011.
Cultural Intersections: More about Teatro Vista’s 2011-2012 season
By Cándido Tirado
Directed by Ricardo Gutierrez
October 23 – December 4, 2011; Press opening Thursday, October 27, 7 pm
At Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave., Chicago
Momma’s Boyz begins with the end of a journey; a young man stands by the coffin containing the body of his friend. He ponders the events that have led to this sad end and swears that if it were possible, he would turn back time to ensure that his friend doesn’t fall prey to the bullet fired. This humor-infused drama works backward chronologically to the moment when their lives change. For its Teatro Vista debut, Tirado is updating the script and setting it in the Chicago.
New York-based Cándido Tirado, who joins Kristoffer Diaz and Tanya Saracho as Teatro Vista resident writer this season, is known for his works as playwright and director of works inspired in issues that affect the Hispanic community. His Off-Broadway productions include: King Without a Castle, Moribundo, First Class, The Barber Shop, Ilka: The Dream, Hands of Stone, The Missteps of Juan Pachanga; Some People Have All The Luck; Swallowed By The Sea; Momma’s Boyz, When Nature Calls, The Kid Next Door, Hey There Black Cat, Abuelo, and The Missing Colors of the Rainbow. His works have been presented at The District in Los Angeles; Repertorio Español, The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, INTAR, The Latino Experimental Fantastic Theater, NYC Hip Hop Festival, P.S.122, Songs of Coconut Hill Theater Festival, Ollantay, La MaMa, and Soho Rep. in New York; and Sundance Theater Lab in Utah. His play Some People Have All The Luck was presented at the National Theater of Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic. His plays have appeared in publications such as “Recent Puerto Rican Theater: Five Plays from New York” (Arte Público); “Nuestro New York: An Anthology of Puerto Rican Playwrights” (Penguin, Mentor Books); “Conducting a Life; Essay about Maria Irene Fornes” (Smith and Kraus Books) and “Positive/Negative: Women of Color Living with H.I.V” (Aunt Lute Books). Tirado has been the only playwright to receive four New York Foundation for the Arts’ Artists Fellowships including one for Momma’s Boyz in 2006.
Ricardo Gutierrez is an ensemble member and directing associate of Teatro Vista where he has directed La Magica Posada and the staged reading of Yamaha 300 for Goodman Theatre’s Latino Theatre Festival. Recent directing credits include Quita Mitos by Tanya Saracho at Next Theatre and Romeo and Juliet and The Magic Ofrenda for Glass Onion Theatre, where he is the co-founder and Artistic Director, and The Glass Menagerie for Absolute Shakespeare. As an Artistic Associate of Theatre 40 in Los Angeles, Gutierrez directed the world premieres of Goodsand Pasquini the Magnificent. Goods earned Gutierrez a Los Angeles Dramalogue Award for Directing. He also has directed more than twenty musical productions including Let the Eagle Fly for Goodman Theatre’s Latino Theatre Festival.
Oedipus el Rey
By Luis Alfaro
¿Quién es este hombre? With Oedipus el Rey, MacArthur Genius Grant winner Luis Alfaro updates the “mother” of all tragedies and the ultimate story of forbidden love. Amid the sizzling rhythms of the present-day East LA barrio—the gang capital of America with the highest recidivism rate—a juvenile delinquent rises to be a king. But his passion for one woman will violate our most sacred law.
The nature of urban cities and the intersection of cultures that have created the barrios and even the language of the streets play prominent parts in this stunning contemporary gang version of Sophocles’ classic Greek tale. As such, Alfaro’s Chicano adaptation is peppered with Spanish words and phrase, resulting in the seamless combination of Spanish and English so prevalent in today’s South Central LA culture that provides the backdrop for the play.
Luis Alfaro is a Chicano writer/performer known for his work in poetry, theater, short stories, performance and journalism. He is also a producer/director who spent ten years at the Mark Taper Forum as Associate Producer, Director of New Play Development and co-director of the Latino Theatre Initiative. His plays include Electricidad (Goodman Theatre/Teatro Vista, Teatro Vision-San Jose, Mark Taper Forum-Los Angeles, Borderlands Theatre-Tucson), Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner (Teatro Vista, Taper Too-Los Angeles, and Hartford Stage Connecticut), Downtown(Institute of Contemporary Art-London, XTeresa Performance Space-Mexico City), No Holds Barrio (Goodman Theatre), Body of Faith(Cornerstone Theater-Los Angeles), Straight As A Line (Goodman Theatre, Primary Stages-NY, Edinburgh Festival-Scotland, The National Theatre of Romania [2 year run]) Bitter Homes and Gardens (Latino Chicago, Playwrights Arena-Los Angeles) Ladybird (La Jolla Playhouse) andBlack Butterfly (Smithsonian Museum, The Kennedy Center-Washington D.C., Mark Taper Forum-Los Angeles). Alfaro is the recipient of a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “Genius” fellowship. A Rockefeller Fellow and University of California Regents Chair Fellow, he is the only artist to have won two awards in the same year from The Kennedy Center’s Fund for New American Plays. Alfaro is the recipient of awards from the National Endowment of the Arts, TCG and PEN USA, among others. He is featured in over 25 anthologies, has an award-winning spoken word CD, and was nominated for a local Emmy for his short film, Chicanismo.
by Cándido Tirado
Directed by Edward Torres
A Teatro Vista world premiere presented at Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn St., Chicago
April 7-May 6, 2012; Press opening Monday, April 16, 7 p.m.
In Fish Men, a group of urban chess hustlers engage each other in spirited matches on a hot summer day in Washington Square Park, hoping to draw unsuspecting players into a high-stakes hustle. Their patience is soon rewarded by the appearance of Rey Reyes, a young student who naively agrees to their challenge. But as the game progresses, the chess tables are turned—raising the stakes and revealing the tramatic circumstances that have made them seek refuge in a game that has become their obsession. Resounding with biting humor and unexpected pathos,Fish Men focuses on a group of unforgettable characters drawn together by their need to overcome individual tragedies.
“When I graduated from college, I decided I wanted to combine two great loves of my life: writing plays and playing chess!” said Tirado, who has since become a chess master rated by the United States Chess Federation. “But it wasn’t until 2000, as I was walking by the chess tables in Washington Square Park, that suddenly the play Fish Men revealed itself to me. Outwardly, the play deals with the cruel art of the chess hustle—but underneath is man’s inhumanity towards his fellow man. I am thrilled to premiere this play in Chicago, with Teatro Vista and Goodman Theatre.”
Tirado’s multi-ethnic, multi-generational play Fish Men a world premiere, marks the second production in a newly announced, three-year producing partnership between Teatro Vista and Goodman Theatre dedicated to new work by Latino writers. Currently on stage at the Goodman through April 24th is the first production that launched the partnership, the critically acclaimed world premiere of Tanya Saracho’s El Nogalar.
Edward Torres (director) is co-founder and Artistic Director for Teatro Vista…Theatre with a View. For Teatro Vista he has directed The Show Host, Jamie Pachino’s Aurora’s Motive, Romulus Linney’s Ambrosio, Edwin Sanchez’s Icarus and Reuben Gonzalez’s The Boiler Room, and elsewhere, Migdalia Cruz’s Lolita de Lares at Latino Chicago Theatre Company and The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity at Victory Gardens Theater/Teatro Vista (Jeff Award for Best Direction and Best Production) and off Broadway at Second Stage Theatre (Lortel nomination, Outstanding Play).
About Teatro Vista
Teatro Vista was founded in 1989 by Chicago theater artists Edward Torres and Henry Godinez, along with a collective of Equity and non-Equity actors. Today, Teatro Vista is Chicago’s largest non-profit Equity Latino theater company producing full scale, Latino oriented, theatrical productions in English. Teatro Vista is firmly committed to sharing and celebrating the riches of Latino culture with all Chicago theater audiences. This commitment stems from the belief that there are as many similarities between us as there are differences, and that the answer to breaking down the walls of prejudice and stereotypes lies in understanding these differences. Ultimately, it is through this “view” that Teatro Vista intends to bridge the gap between Latino and non-Latino cultures in Chicago.
The Teatro Vista Ensemble includes Edward Torres, Executive Artistic Director; Cecilie Keenan, Producing Director/Resident Director; Joe Minoso, Associate Artistic Director; Sandra Marquez, Associate; Desmin Borges, Liaison Secretary; and Ensemble members Charin Alvarez,Maximino Arciniega, Cheryl Lynn Bruce, Marcus Castillo, Ivonne Coll, Laura Crotte, Lauri Dahl, Deb Davis, Lisa Fernandez, Khanisha Foster, Ricardo Gutierrez, Erik Juarez, Jon Lyon, Gustavo Mellado, Marcela Munoz, Maricela Ochoa, Tony Sancho, Cecilia Suarez, Juan Francisco Villa; Resident Writers Kristoffer Diaz and Tanya Saracho; and Junior Ensemble members Christina Nieves, Marvin Quijada andJuan Gabriel Ruiz.
Teatro Vista’s Board of Directors includes Betty L. Cleeland and Cesar Nu?oz, Co-Presidents; Jim Doyle, Treasurer; Edward Bark, Secretary; and Tom Greensfelder, Amy Lindner, Gabriela Najera, and Joan Pantsios. Teatro Vista’s Advisory Board includes Henry Godinez, Dennis Langley, Ben Lenz, Paul Roldan and Carlos Tortolero.
Teatro Vista is supported in part by Alphawoods Foundation, Artswork Fund, The Boeing Company Charitable Trust, Chicago Community Trust, a CityArts Program grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation,Hispanics In Philanthropy, Illinois Arts Council, Joyce Foundation, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, National Association of Latino Arts and Culture, and Woods Fund of Chicago.
For more information, visit teatrovista.org