Those who read my blog and those who know me personally, know that I have a passion for theater in Spanish, from the great works of the Spanish Baroque and Golden Age and zarzuela, to contemporary Latin American and Latino plays. I have had the pleasure of attending Bodas de sangre and also Azul, bilingual productions that were performed in Philadelphia. Tanaquil Márquez was instrumental in both of them (as well as others). I caught up with Tana and these are her exact words to questions I had about her involvement in bilingual theater in Philadelphia.
Deslumbrar: Tell me about the history of La Fábrica and your role in it. Why was this company created? What productions have you done so far?
– La Fábrica is a very new company, not even a year old yet! After Yajaira and I finished The Duende Cycle, a project I worked on with Eliana Fabiyi for the 2016 Philadelphia Fringe Festival, we formed a great friendship, which shared the love of bilingual theater. From there we worked on a show called Ni tan Divas ni tan Muertas by Indira Páez, which was produced three times around the city. Shortly after we created La Fábrica. Yajaira and I who both work as Artistic Directors and Producing Managers for the company. We felt like there a void that needed to be filled for the growing local Latinx community. There was such a beautiful response from the audience who saw Duende and Divas in their native language (Spanish) that we felt compelled to really establish something here in the city. By producing strong and bold bilingual theatre, we hope to be a vehicle for social communion and positive change in Philadelphia. Our past shows include Azul, which was written and directed by me, exploring Picasso’s blue period through live Flamenco music and dance; and A 2,50 la Cuba Libre, written and directed by Ibrahim Guerra about 5 ficheras working in a bar. Both shows were revived in the winter, with the help of Jose Aviles directing A 2,50 la Cuba Libre in February.
Deslumbrar: La Fábrica has a production in the upcoming Fringe Festival (September 2018) in Philadelphia, called PASSPORT, by Gustavo Ott from Venezuela. Why this play?
-PASSPORT is current, important and poetic, diving into the question of immigration and exposing the mechanics of language and power. It is a very NOW show that we hope will captivate the audience, while raising awareness of our current immigration crisis.
Deslumbrar: What future projects do you have in mind for La Fábrica?
-Definitely more Lorca! We want to explore Tanyo Saracho and Stephen Adly Guirgis as well as the theme of immigration. Yajaira and I are also developing a one act on the more comical side called Tu Gringa, Yo Chama. This is definitely a must see. It mixes the American and Venezuelan culture and humor very well, also anytime Yajaira opens her mouth she is hilarious.
Deslumbrar: Are you looking for sponsors, donors, actors, or production staff? How can those interested contact you?
We are always looking to grow our team! Specifically, for PASSPORT we have teamed up with Free Migration Project, an organization whose mission is to support immigrant communities and to advocate for the right of all decent people to freely migrate. You can donate to support both companies here https://freemigrationproject.org/la-fabrica/. We are also hosting a fundraiser on Thursday, August 16 from 8-11pm at La Fusion Lounge, 1136 S 11th st. It is a Latin Dance-A-Thon, will be a very fun time with amazing prizes!
For anyone who is interested in what we do and how they can be a part of it please email email@example.com.
La Fábrica is looking for your continuous support, in whichever form you can give, so that bilingual theatre can be a fixture in Philadelphia, allowing Spanish and English voices to speak and Spanish and English ears to hear in a constant communal dialogue.