The Inferno Project The untitled play-in-development is an exploration of Dante’s Inferno through the playwright’s humorous self-reflection on mental health, religion, his atheistic point of view, and queer love. Guiding him throughout all the circles of hell is the spirit of his dead Filipino grandfather. Part ritual, part play, part comedy-drama with audience participation and some communal drinking. dtroublewnormal, a study in temperament A radical adaptation of Willa Cather’s 1905 short story “Paul’s Case." Paul, a young queer first generation Asian American teen from Memphis, TN, runs away to New York in hopes to lose himself in his dreams of the Metropolitan Opera; Rey, a NY-based Asian Am gay male, is trying to make sense of his HIV status; and a queer Asian American playwright, who cannot distinguish fact from fiction, faces head on his own mental health issues. The three stories intertwine and create a narrative that explores people's longing to find acceptance, belonging, celebration, community, love, and mentorship.
Ntozake Shange's Why I Had to Dance I was personally asked by playwright-director Ifa Bayeza to create a new three-person choreopoem based on her late sister Ntozake Shange’s essay “Why I Had to Dance” for her memorial presentation in the Anspacher Theater at The Public Theatre in New York. Using Ntozake's words, I created/edited/curated the text for three black women who take on the names of three dances in the Afro-Latinx diaspora.
First read, April 2019 @ The Public Theatre, New York, NY for a Memorial dedicated to Ntozake Shange.
Ma'am Lys, or The Plan Inspired by the real-life community of women in the Dado Village of Mindanao who organized a sex strike against their husbands to bring peace to their villages, the women of the town's sewing collective have everything they need for their livelihoods except for the ability to bring their goods to the market which is two villages away. The problem is, one of the villages is closed due to historical differences between the male village leaders. Ma’am Lys rallies the women to not have sex with their husbands until they stop the fighting. This adaptation of Aristophanes' Lysistrata hopes to examine the corrosive nature of the gender binary in Filipino cultures, opening possibilities to recognize the multiplicity of womanhood in the Philippines through its diverse community of Muslim, Catholic, queer, cis- and trans women. Together they interrogate and challenge the overwhelming toxic masculinity and machismo that has re-emerged in the politics of Duterte and Trump. Their battles with the men bring both laughter and revelation as they reconnect with the matriarchal and indigenous traditions that existed before the colonization by Europeans. This is a ritual play for all Filipino/a/x/os of the diaspora to try to reconnect with cultures, languages, and spirits that have been hidden by the hundreds of years of colonialism.
commissioned by The Sống Collective with Filipina actor Regina De Vera