Ep 17: The Brujx of Theater (Feat. Luis Alfaro and Alexis Scheer)

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This week the Friends experienced two shows. One was an immersive play for one person for Portaleza by David Israel Reynoso/Optika Moderna, presented by La Jolla Playhouse. The prompt is: Send a message to a person in your life who has died. It’s supernatural and kind of sci-fi. Then they review something more high-budget but also similarly technical: Romantics Anonymous, a new musical from Emma Rice, Christopher Dimond, and Michael Kooman. It was live-streamed straight from London’s Old Vic Theatre and it was fully staged! The musical is about two socially awkward chocolate makers who fall in love. What do the Brits know that we don’t about beating COVID and getting theater back?

This week’s guests are playwrights Luis Alfaro (Mojada, Oedipus El Rey) and Alexis Scheer (Our Dear Dead Drug Lord), in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. The two playwrights talk about theater as alchemy and magic, and how to find your voice as a writer, even when that voice is weirder than everyone around you.

Here are links to the things discussed this episode.

  • Portaleza by David Israel Reynoso/Optika Moderna, presented by La Jolla Playhouse
  • Romantics Anonymous, a new musical from Emma Rice, Christopher Dimond, and Michael Kooman
  • This Los Angeles Times piece about Luis Alfaro and Mojada, his riff on Medea.
  • This Q&A with Alexis Scheer about the weekly book club she’s hosting with SpeakEasy Stage Company.
  • This week’s Patreon shoutout: Diana Burbano, who’s gathering monologues for a Zoom reading series she’s producing called Breath of Fire, with Latina Theater Ensemble in collaboration with Protest Play Project. If you’re a Latinx writer, you can submit your original monologues here.

The transcript for this episode will be available at a later date.

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