Saturday, March 19, 2016


Below is our full itinerary for Mexico.  Please forward this info to anyone who might be able to make the remaining performances  or who might know folks in Mexico City or San Miguel de Allende.

In Oaxaca, with Mariana Mordente:

Tuesday, March 15, 5:00 pm
Oaxaca Lending Library
Pino Suarez #59, Oaxaca Centro
$150 pesos - benefit for OLL

Wednesday, March 16, 7:00 pm
La Jicara
Porfirio Diaz #1105
Oaxaca Centro
Free admittance

In Mexico City, DF, with Minerva Valenzuela:

Friday, March 18, 5:30 pm
Auditorio Plantel del Valle, UACM
San Lorenzo 290, Colonia de Valle, DF
Free Admittance

Sunday, March 20, 8:00 pm
Punto Gozadera, restaurante cultural de encuestas feminista
Plaza San Juan #15,
Centro Delegation, Cuauhtémoc DF
Free Admittance

In San Miguel de Allende:

Tuesday, March 29, 5:00 pm
Teatro Santa Ana
The Biblioteca Publica
Insurgentes #25, Col. Centro
$150 pesos, benefit for La Biblioteca

Wednesday, March 30, 5:00 pm
Teatro Santa Ana
The Biblioteca Publica
Insurgents #25, Col. Centro
$150 pesos, benefit for Ser Mujer

For those in theater, you will recognize that this is an insane performance schedule in a foreign country.  Three cities, five different performing spaces, five tech rehearsals, two different Mexican actresses to work with.  However, this is the kind of thing Carolyn does when left to her own devices, which I foolishly did for the two months in Mexico before I arrived.  But, as she said, I'm the perfect partner for her, because no one else would be ABLE to do this tour -- let alone WILLING.  

Here's Carolyn and her daughter, Mica, who lives and works in Oaxaca and is the reason we performed there.

We're at a rooftop restaurant with a view of the city
and famous mescal cocktails.
Carolyn did an incredible amount of work finding people to help with booking, publicity, tech, and performing the Spanish narration that she had written. Here's our Oaxaca narrator, Mariana Mordente, rehearsing howling with my lesbian werewolf in rehearsal on the roof of the Oaxaca Lending Library.

Rehearsing the Restoration Coming-Out Scene

The saving grace of this intense and stressful first week is that everyone we've worked with couldn't have been nicer or more competent  or creative or calm or cheerful.  I know machismo is a huge problem here.  I KNOW it.  I've seen the feminist posters about it.  But the men we've worked with have been truly gentle and  -- there's no other word for it -- sweet.  Of course the women were fantastic, but that's more to be expected.  

Now we're in Mexico City, having done two shows in Oaxaca and one here last night.  Phew.  So we're on the downhill slope, in terms of work.  


Oaxaca is a very special place.  It's a beautiful Colonial city with a famous cuisine and a notoriously rebellious past and present.  It's surrounded by Indian villages with very deep craft and art traditions.  And there are ancient pyramids nearby.  Unfortunately, I only got a little taste of Oaxaca, because we had so much work to do -- but enough to know I'll come back soon, to do one of those immersive Spanish courses.

It was late Spring, still some flowers:
Jacaranda everywhere
Unknown Fabulous Yellow Flowers
The Door to my Studio Apartment with Patio

On my only free night, I saw a Oaxaca wedding celebration with women dancing with flower baskets on their heads and giant puppets and fireworks in front of one of the old churches.  Sorry, no good photos of puppets or fireworks.

That same night, we came upon a demonstration/art installation.  Women had spent the day dying shoes red, to represent all the women who have been killed in Ciudad Juarez -- and elsewhere.  It's hard to capture how moving these scattered scarlet boots and shoes were.

There is a vibrant feminist consciousness among women here that is very militant and widespread, unlike in the U.S.  Very exciting.  These posters below were in La Jicara, where we performed.
Verbal, Sexual, or Institutional:
it's all the same violence.
 Caution:  Machismo kills!
My Body is Mine.
Caution:Machismo kills!

We were so thrilled to find our poster below a lesbian poster, although we never found out what the rest of the poster said.
You think it's easy to translate "Crackpot Crones" into Spanish?  Carolyn consulted with a LOT of people.  She can't tell me exactly what "Rucas" means.  Of course "locas" means "crazy."  But she says everyone laughs when they hear "Las Rucas Locas," so that's enough for us.  The poster, designed by Margo Tufo, delighted the Oaxacans.

Our first performance was at the Oaxaca Lending Library, which is the cultural center for English speakers living here.  Here's Mariana (our narrator/clown), Saskia (publicist, booker, sound tech and probably a few other things) and Carolyn working on translating the script in the Library.  
I think this might have been the moment when we were searching for the Mexican names of Donald Duck's nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie (as mentioned in the Coming-Out Sitcom).  EVERY country in the WORLD has their OWN names for the plucky little avians.  Saskia says in Holland it's Quik, Quak and Quok.  These are the kinds of things you investigate deeply when you're a serious theater artist.  In Mexico, it's Hugo, Paco and Luis. Just google it.

The Crones and Mariana before the Library Performance.
As Carolyn said, she tried to find someone who looked as much like us as possible.
The Library was our Mexican debut and the debut of our wild and wonderful backdrop designed by Judy Schavrien.  
"Red Hanky Grannies" 
Mariana introduced our scenes and then interrupted us at various points to describe what would happen in the next part of the scene.  So Spanish-only speakers were told what they were going to see before they saw it.  This was an audience of mainly English speakers, so we couldn't really tell how well it worked.  But Mariana was a completely adorable clown and improvised her own jokes with the audience.  She's a gem.  

People loved the show.  They loved the humor, the feminism, the lesbianism, the blasphemy -- and the fact that we took the trouble to bring our theater to them.  We did the "Lesbian Werewolf" scene in Spanish.  I felt terribly inhibited and awkward speaking Spanish, and did not acquit myself well.  Carolyn only had three short lines, so she did better.  

On to La Jicara the next night!  I wish we had something like La Jicara in San Francisco -- a community center/bookstore with great food.  I feel a sense of space for things like this to happen in Oaxaca, whereas there's no space remaining for such quixotic ventures in SF.  Here's the main room, with the Crone backdrop -- safety-pinned to nails, instead of velcroed liked the night before.  The ceiling is partially open and vine-covered.

Posters at La Jicara Protesting Genetically Modified Food
Unfortunately, I have no photos of our performance at La Jicara.  The place was PACKED and the audience was very enthusiastic.  It was exciting.  Again, most people knew SOME English.  Our performance took a step up, inspired by the energy of the crowd, which included lots of young people.  My Lesbian Werewolf en Espanol was MUCH better except…. oh, except… Instead of "hermosos pechos"  (trans. beautiful breasts), I said "hermanos pechos" (trans. brotherly breasts or something like that).  Oy vey.  What a mistake for a lesbian werewolf to make.    

After the performance, everyone hung out.  We had a full dinner!  We were starving.  How great to perform somewhere that people can stay long and chat and eat.  
Carolyn with Mica and friends
Crones with Jose Antonio, our dear lighting man

To end:  Just some cool Oaxaca images:

People drive on the Left Side of the Road for One Block!?!
Oaxaca is famous for its green stone walls.
Never seen THIS image anywhere before!
One of the many strange and beautiful murals
Just Plain Fun

Th….th…..That's all, folks!


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