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Guest Post: Mariana Carreño King Describes the Process Behind Writing “Señorita 744890”

Michael Palma for Mariana Correno KIng RepOn the brink of starting the last week of rehearsals, I think I speak for the rest of the crew when I say we are very excited!

It has been a very intense process, but also one filled with surprises. Even though, I have a few years working on this play, you really don’t know what works and what doesn’t until you work with actors and designers.

This play started as a monologue. I was reading an article about the effects of solitary confinement on imprisoned women and I remembered a legend which I love titled La mulata de Córdoba. In the story, there’s a beautiful dark-skinned women that doesn’t pay attention to any of the man from her town, her lack of interest in the men around her, causes people to accuse her of witchcraft which in turn leads to her being incarcerated; in some versions she was in a jail in other versions she was held in a cave. Nonetheless, the point is that she is alone and only has a piece of chalk to draw on the walls…I won’t tell you what happens next to not ruin the play for you.

While I wrote the monologue, it didn’t seem appropriate so I chose to add the other characters.

The idea that the play was written by a lonely writer sitting in a dark and depressing apartment is not necessarily true (my apartment is not depressing, just disorganized). Well, maybe the first draft. But plays are a product of many people working together. This play was not the exception. The ideas developed with the help of many artistic residencies where I was able to work with actors and directors, among them, “Playground” with Lark Play Development Center, a “Summer Intensive” with LAByrinth Theatre Company and “INKtank” with Rising Circle.

Daniel Jáquez, the director, has directed three lectures with different actors in the last three years. In every lecture along with the comments from different mentors and actors, the ideas and perspective kept growing. I may take the credit as playwright, but the real credit belongs to all those who have put their grain of sand.

To win the Metlife “Nuestra Voces” National Playwright Competition has been an incredible experience. Repertorio has been a generous and open to the bizarre ideas I come up with. I wrote the script in English, but I love to showcase it in Spanish. To do the translation has thought me a lot about the characters, the story and what I wanted to say; it also helped me to improve the English script. I am extremely grateful for this opportunity.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Miss 748890 was written and developed during a Playground Residency with The Lark Play Development Center, two Summer Intensives with LAByrinth Theatre Company, and an INKtank Residency with Rising Circle, under the mentorship of Migdalia Cruz y Deepa Purohit.

Mariana wishes to thank Migdalia Cruz, Deepa Purohit, Portia Jones, Marlene Forte, Teddy Cañez, Kohl Sudduth, Socorro Santiago, Lanna Joffrey, Harvey Gardner Moore, e Irene Sofia Lucio, for their support, feedback and for giving life to these characters in different incarnations.

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Meet The People Behind “Señorita 744890”

Señorita 744890 is coming soon to Repertorio! Meet the people behind the production of the 2014 winning play of Metlife Nuestras Voces Playwright Competition.

Mariana Carreño King’s Señorita 744890, follows the story of Maria, who finds herself in prison and held in solitary confinement. To accompany her, Maria only has a piece of chalk, sporadic visits from Howard, and a voice. Directed by Daniel Jáquez, Señorita 744890 will take us on a search for inner peace in the midst of the circumstances.

This new drama will premiere on Repertorio’s stage on Tuesday, February 5th at 8pm.

For tickets and additional performance dates, visit www.repertorio.nyc or call 212-225-9999.

Winning Play of the 2014 Metlife Nuestras Voces National Playwritting Competition. 

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MARIANA CARREÑO KING

 Playwright

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Mariana plays include The Prisoner (developed with The Lark and Rising Circle Collective) Patience, Fortitude and Other Antidepressants, (an urban riff on Federico García Lorca’s Yerma, commissioned by Intar Theatre for Unit52,  presented at LATC as part of Encuentro 2014), Dance for a Dollar (a dance-theatre collaboration with Daniel Jáquez, Miracle Theatre, Portland, OR) Ofelia’s Lovers (Mabou Mines Residencies, 2007-2009), Rare Encounters (Intar’s Hispanic Playwrights in Residency Lab, 2008), Darkroom, and The Wake (NewWorksLab, 1996 and 2007), Fool’s Journey (finalist, 2001 O’Neill Playwrights Conference) and La Mujer del tiempo (Autonomous University of Queretaro, Mexico). Her short plays, Pitahayas (finalist, 2003 Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Heideman Award), Mexico ’68, Riding Hope, Night of the Cat-Sitter, Pretty Little Imp, Clowns, and Static have been presented at The Public, Milagro Theatre, Intar and with LAByrinth Theatre Company.  As a director she has worked with Rising Circle, IATI Theatre, Intar, Cherry Pitt, Rising Circle and The Lark in NYC, and Stages Repertory in Houston, TX, among others. Mariana is in the Advisory Committee for The Lark Play Development Center US/Mexico Playwright Exchange, member of LAByrinth Theatre Company, and Alumna, Hispanic Playwrights in Residency Lab (HPRL) at INTAR.

DANIEL JÀQUEZ

Director

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Daniel is a stage director, theater creator and translator. Daniel grew up in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua and studied Actuarial Science at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of Texas and a Master of Fine Arts in Directing from the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater Institute at Harvard University.

Jáquez is the Interim Artistic Director of Milagro Theater in Portland, Oregon. In New York, Jáquez is the Director of the young company Unit52 from Intar Theater and was the producer and director of his NewWorks Lab Festival. Jáquez is an associated artist of V!da Theater in Springfield, Massachusetts and a member of the US/Mexico Playwright Exchange from Lark Play Development Center committee, where he participates as a director and translator.

Jáquez is also a member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, at Latina/o Theater Common’s Steering Committee, at Lincoln Center Theater Director’s Lab and NoPassport, a Pan-American theater coalition.

ZULEMA CLARES

Role: Maria

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Zulema holds a degree in Theater Techniques and Choral Direction from Cuba’s National Arts School.  She has worked in theater, film, and television as an actress, playwright, and director.  Her credits include, Las noches de Constantinopla, Tres veces dos y Larga distancia. Her credits with Repertorio include La fiesta del Chivo, La casa de Bernarda Alba, La vida es un sueño, Pantaleón y la visitadoras, Así que pasen cinco años, En el tiempo de las mariposas, Mariela en el desierto, El amor en tiempos del cólera, Fuenteovejuna, Citas a ciegas, La zapatera prodigiosa, Aire Frio, El loco por fuerza y La Tía Julia y el escribidor. Clares is the recipient of multiple ACE and HOLA awards.

BOBBY PLASENCIA

Role: Howard, Corrections Officer

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Bobby holds a MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. His NY credits include, Su nombre será su sombra  (Repertorio Español), 21 (Repertorio Español), La Ruta (Working Theater), Lawnpeople (Cherry Lane), Luz (La Mama), American Jornalero (INTAR), Brave Ducks (NY Fringe), Julius Caesar (The Drilling Company). Regional credits include Caliban in The Tempest, Feste in Twelfth Night, and Dromio of Ephesus in Comedy of Errors (Griffith Park Shakespeare Festival, LA). Water & Power (The Mark Taper Forum, LA), Water & Power (San Diego Rep, 2008 Craig Noel Award), Vesuvius (South Coast Rep), Blood Wedding (La Jolla Playhouse). Films include, Letters from the Bigman (Sundance Film Festival), Fidel (Showtime mini-series), and Maria Full of Grace (HBO).

INÉS DEL CASTILLO

Role: Voice

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Inés is an actress, director and author with a BFA from NYU’s Tisch School of Art in acting and directing. Her credits with Repertorio include En el Tiempo de las Mariposas and three short plays from the Siglo de Oro. For her work in The Window, she was nominated by Innovation Theater Awards in New York for Best Actress and with the rest of the cast won Best Cast. Last year she interpreted an original monologue at TEDx.  As a director, she is a member of Lincoln Center Directors Lab and is the recipient of the Van Lier scholarship for young Latino directors to direct two productions at Repertorio. Both productions were nominated for awards by ACE, HOLA, and won an award from ATI.

 

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It’s Summer at Repertorio!

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It is officially summer in the city, which means Repertorio is in the full swing of its summer session!

The theatre is offering up a specially curated summer season. Alongside the incredible plays you can find year round like En el tiempo de las mariposas and Cita a ciegas, new plays like Barceló con hielo and the Van Lier Series display the products of young, talented Latino writers, directors and actors flexing their muscle and sharpening their artistic skills on Repertorio’s Stage. Check out just some of the amazing shows that these young Latino artists have put together!

 

BARCELÓ CON HIELO
(BARCELÓ ON THE ROCKS)

By Marco Antonio Rodríguez
Directed by José Zayas

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Javier Fano & Ivan Camilo in “Barceló con hielo” (Photo courtesy of Michael Palma) 

Repertorio’s summer hit has received rave reviews from many publications and networks, including TimeOut New York, The Huffington Post, Univision41 and many others.

The play follows the story of the miserly Nino Antonio Ortíz whose hallucinations of former Domincan president Joaquín Balaguer force him to confront the dark secrets of his family embedded in the Caribbean nation’s history. Simultaneously, he must confront the debilitating effects of both his illness and children as he deteriorates in his Washington Heights home.

A perfect mix of history, culture, comedy and tragedy, “Barceló con hielo” is a story with a universal message based on the psyche of not only Dominican immigrants, but anyone who has experienced to some degree the psychological and emotional effects of leaving home.

“Barceló con hielo” premiered at Repertorio Español on Friday, June 13th at 8pm.
SCHEDULE, TICKETS AND INFORMATION: http://www.repertorio.org/barcelo or call 1-212-225-9999

 

 

EL CRUCE SOBRE EL NIÁGARA*
(CROSSING NIAGARA)

By Alonso Alegría Amézquita
Directed by Victoria Collado

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Jorge Riverón & Eric Paterniani (Photo courtesy of Michael Palma) 

What happens when a famous tightrope walker is questioned on the genuineness of his act by a young scientist? They cross Niágara together, of course. El cruce sobre el Niágara is an excellent production by the young Victoria Collado that will make you laugh, gasp and marvel. Using Collado’s passion for incorporating dance and movement into her plays, El cruce sobre el Niágara is an exciting production that is guaranteed to leave you feeling good.

“El cruce sobre el Niágara” premiered at Repertorio Español on July 3rd at 7pm.
SCHEDULE, TICKETS AND INFORMATION: http://www.repertorio.org/niagara or call 1-212-225-9999

 

 

FIN DE SEMANA*
(WEEKEND)

By Julio Ramón Ribeyro
Directed by Diego Chiri

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“Fin de semana” is a lost treasure by one of Peru’s most prolific writers, Julio Ramón Ribeyro. Known mostly for his short stories and essays, the writer also produced beautifully written plays of which many are rarely produced. Directed by Diego Chiri, the play follows what happens when an indigenous child dies on the property of a private club. A young architect is forced to decide between protecting those of his social class or report the negligence, provoking a look at the dark side of class and race in Peru and Latin America.

“Fin de semana” will premiere at Repertorio Español on Thursday, July 24th at 7pm.
SCHEDULE, TICKETS AND INFORMATION: http://www.repertorio.org/semana or call 1-212-225-9999

 

 

ASÍ VAN LOS FANTASMAS DE MÉXICO, PRIMERA PARTE*
(SO GO THE GHOSTS OF MEXICO, PART ONE)

By Matthew Paul Olmos
Directed by Estefania Fadul

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The first part of a three-play cycle by Matthew Paul Olmos, Así van los fantasmas de México (Primera Parte), directed by Estefania Fadul, is a jarring look at the U.S/Mexico drug wars. Based on true events, a young woman volunteers to become the police chief in her village rife with violence and corruption. Using her new position to inspire pacifism and non-violence, she sparks a series of events that will affect her, her family, her enemies and her society as a whole.

“Así van los fantasmas de México (primera parte)” will premiere at Repertorio Español on Thursday, August 14th at 7pm.
SCHEDULE, TICKETS AND INFORMATION: http://www.repertorio.org/fantasmas or call 1-212-225-9999

 

 

*This production is part of the 2014-2015 Van Lier Directing Fellowship, sponsored by The New York Community Trust. For more information visit www.repertorio.org/vanlier

 

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Meet the New Van Lier Fellowship Directors!

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Every two years, Repertorio hand in hand with The New York Community Trust has chosen three accomplished, young, Hispanic directors the opportunity to hone their craft on Repertorio’s iconic stage. Now charged with two productions over two summers – one contemporary play in 2014 and a Siglo de oro (17th century Spanish) play in 2015 – Repertorio proudly welcomes Victoria Collado, Diego Chiri and Estefania Fadul and looks forward to the great energy these talented individuals will bring!

Their plays, El cruce sobre el Niágara, Fin de semana and Así van los fantasmas de México (primera parte) will be playing all summer. So check out the newest members of the familia Repertorio and don’t forget to buy your tickets to these three great plays!

For tickets, visit www.repertorio.org/fellowship or call (212) 225 9999

 

VICTORIA COLLADO

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HOMETOWN: Miami, Florida
BACKGROUND: Cuban
2014 PRODUCTION: El cruce sobre el Niágara by Alonso Alegría

Victoria Collado is a native of Miami, Florida of Cuban background and is a graduate of Florida International University where she received her BFA in Theatre Performance.

Both an actress and director, she is influenced by the works of Brecht, Pina Bausch and Agusto Boal and is very interested in mixing movement with naturalist plays to create an exciting energy in the theatre. Back in Miami, she directed for MicroTeatro Miami, What If Works and other theatres in the area.

She has chosen El cruce sobre el Niagara (Crossing the Niágara) as her New York Premiere, though her previous work on Los últimos días de una casa was nominated for an ACE award as well as an ATI Award win for Best Director of a Monologue.

El cruce sobre el Niágara by Alonso Alegría will be premiering at Repertorio on July 3rd. Following the story of an acrobat who is questioned by a skeptical young man, he is impelled to do what he has never done before – cross the Niagara with a man on his back.

 

DIEGO CHIRI

Diego M. Chiri by Natt McFee

HOMETOWN: Lima, Perú
BACKGROUND: Peruvian
2014 PRODUCTION: Fin de semana by Julio Ramón Ribeyro

Diego M. Chiri is a native of Lima, Peru – a graduate of the Champagnat High School and going on to graduate from the Community College of Philadelphia and Bucknell University with Cum Laude honors and degrees in Film and Theatre.

Diego has an impressive directing history in both film and theatre, having directed Ashes (2010), The Zoo Story (2011) and the documentary Devising the American Family (2012) which was screened at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Throughout his education, he garnered various scholarships and academic accolades, including the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship, the CCP Foundation Scholarship, and membership in the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.

A fan of the work of Julio Ramón Ribeyro – particularly the writer’s lesser known scripts – Diego will be directing the powerful Fin de semana (Weekend) by said author, premiering July 24th. Following the death of an indigenous child on the property of a private club in 1960s Lima, the architect of the building must decide between reporting the negligence or protecting his own social class – a decision made more difficult by the clubs owner, an oligarch capable of anything when his interests are threatened.

 

ESTEFANÍA FADUL

Estefanía Fadul by Shelly Rodríguez

HOMETOWN: Hannover, New Hampshire
BACKGROUND: Colombian
2014 PRODUCTION: Así van los fantasmas de México, primera parte by Matthew Paul Olmos

Estefania Fadul is a Colombian born, New Hampshire raised director with her own company – Pleiades Productions – of which she is Artistic Director. Aside from that impressive feat, she has also directed and co-produced various readings, workshops and productions including Well by Lisa Kron and Persephone by Mathew Minnicino (FringeNYC). She has assisted various directors like Ed Sylvanus Iskandar (The Flea), Jo Bonney (MCC), Sheryl Kaller (Powerhouse Theatre/NYSAF), Tracy Young (Oregon Shakespeare Festival) and Michael Barakiva (Upstart Creatures).

A graduate of Vassar College, she has also studied at the Prague Film School and the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab.

For her first Van Lier production at Repertorio, Estefania has chosen Así van los fantasmas de México, Primera Parte (So Go the Ghosts of México, Part One) by Matthew Paul Olmos, a fascinating play exploring the effect of the current U.S/Mexican drug wars. Inspired by true events, a young woman becomes the police chief of her village when nobody else dares to. Armed with a pacifist message, she must reevaluate the worth of her fight after she sets off a chain of events.

 

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“The Theatre of Rice & Beans” Premiere

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It’s not everyday that a lifetime achievement is immortalized in a documentary, but that’s exactly what happened at the May 12th premiere of The Theater of Rice & Beans. The film by University of Florida professor Tony Mata is an in depth look at the origins and trajectory of Latino theatre in New York, as well as the stories of René Buch, Miriam Colón and Max Ferra who founded Repertorio Español, The Puerto Rican Travelling Theatre and INTAR, respectively.

Also in attendance were some of the Latino stages’ biggest talents, including Zulema Clares, Ana Margarita Martínez Casado, Carmen Rivera, Chita Rivera, Miriam Cruz, among many many others. Check out just a few of these photos from this big night out!

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Luís Carlos de la Lombana & Founding Artistic Director René Buch

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Founding Artistic Director René Buch

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Carlos Navedo (Impacto News) and Actress Zulema Clares

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Manny Alfaro (HOLA), Public Relations Associate Kevin Tighe Martínez (Repertorio Español), Carlos Navedo (Impacto), Actresses Zulema Clares and Ana Margarita Mart’inez Casado, Director Leyma López

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Actresses Zulema Clares and Ana Margarita Martínez Casado, PRTT founder Miriam Colón and Director Leyma López (Repertorio Español).

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Actresses Ana Margarita Martínez Casado and PRTT founder Miriam Colón.

 

 

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In Memoriam: Repertorio Says Goodbye to Gabriel García Márquez

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On May 2nd, Repertorio will be honoring the memory of writer Gabriel García Márquez with a special performance of Crónica de una muerte anunciada, one of Repertorio’s longest running productions based on the novel of the same name. García Márquez changed world literature with his countless novels and stories, one of the main figures in the development of the genre of magic realism. Through that vein, he made an indelible impact on our theatre. Repertorio has a long history with the stories of “Gabo”, and check out the past plays that we have had and still have.

CRONICA DE UNA MUERTE ANUNCIADA

DIRECTED BY JORGE ALÍ TRIANA 1999-2014

michael palma for repertorio cronica 028 Set against the backdrop of a small Colombian town, Chronicle of a Death Foretold explores the chain of events, false accusations, petty errors and biases that lead to the unnecessary, yet pre-determined murder of a young man. It is a tightly woven tale that really captures García Márquez’s spin on “magic realism”, exploring the antiquated moral codes, the conspiracy of silence, and the explosive issues of race and class that lead the story to its tragic ending.

EL AMOR EN LOS TIEMPOS DE CÓLERA

DIRECTED BY JOSÉ ZAYAS 2012-2014

michael palma for repertorio love in the time_061 A lyrical, imagistic play that focuses on an extraordinary love story between a poetically-inclined man named Florentino Ariza and a sensual, practical yet somewhat elusive woman named Fermina Daza. Spanning fifty years of time, the story plays out in a series of short scenic episodes filled with poetry, song, movement and heightened moments of theatricality. One of García Márquez’s most recognizable stories, this critically acclaimed play is a beautiful take on the world renowned novel. 

LA CANDIDA ERENDIRA

DIRECTED BY JORGE ALÍ TRIANA 1991-1996

CANDIDAERENDIRA0046-OfeliaGonzalez   Based on a strong story by Gabo, this play follows the dark travels of a grandmother and her granddaughter. Starring the famous Ofelia González, the production was directed by famous Colombian director Jorge Alí Triana, who was also friends with Gabriel García Márquez himself.

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A Vibrant Team for “Barceló con hielo”

JoseZayas Color by MPalma EM300

With the highly anticipated world premiere of Repertorio’s newest production, Barceló con hielo, on the horizon, two of Repertorio’s most dynamic figures have teamed up to make this a one-of-a-kind and provocative production that will be a must-see for those interested in Caribbean culture, history and tradition. Resident Director José Zayas has teamed up with playwright Marco Antonio Rodríguez, combining a praised and distinct directing style with a unique story taking place between today’s Washington Heights and the Dominican countryside of the 1970s.

Well on the road to readings and rehearsals, take a minute to be introduced to the writer and director of this play that is bound to be one of the hallmarks of contemporary Hispanic-American theater.

Barceló con hielo will premiere on Friday, June 13th at 8pm. For tickets and reservations, go to www.repertorio.org/barcelo or call (212) 225 9999. 

 

JoseZayas Color by MPalma EM300José Zayas
Director

In 2004, José Zayas’ began his journey at Repertorio as part of the Van Lier Directing Fellowship. Born in Puerto Rico and a graduate of Harvard and Carnegie Mellon Universities, he has proven to be a major force in the world of Latino arts and culture. Alongside an impressive list of achievements outside of Repertorio, he would go on to direct seven productions for the company, and was recently named the official Resident Director. Many of his productions have gone on to win prestigious ACE (Association de Cronistas de Espectaculo) and HOLA (Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors) awards. Some of them include Madre, el drama padre ; Letters to a Mother, Nowhere on the Border; No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy; In the Time of the Butterflies; and Love in the time of Cholera.

Zayas has already made impressive and influential strides in New York’s theater scene. As co-Founder of the Immediate Theater Company, he has also held a residency at The Ensemble Studio Theater, has been listed on nytheater.com on their 2007 People of the Year list, is a Drama League Fellow, and is also an alumnus of Lincoln Center’s Directing Lab.

Marco Antonio Rodríguez
Writer 

Marco 4 no nameA native of New York City with deep roots in the Dominican Republic, Marco Antonio graduated from the famous La Guardia High School for the Performing Arts and graduated from Southern Methodist University. With a vibrant energy both on and off stage, he has acted, written, produced and directed – becoming one of the Latino theater scene’s most powerful emerging voices.

With a long and impressive list of credits, Rodríguez’s work has become widely known and increasingly visible. Some of his screenplays – namely Silence, Mariscal and Covenant – have swept various national screenwriting competitions including the NYC Midnight International Screenwriting Competition. He is also a contributor to Latino Leaders Magazine, and his play Heaven Forbid(s) was named outstanding new play by the Texas Critics Forum.

Rodríguez’s play La luz de un cigarillo was praised on an international level, receiving multiple HOLA and ACE awards as well as three Soberano awards – the most prestigious awards in the Dominican Republic. The play has been widely published, and is currently being included in various curriculums in multiple universities, including the University of Puerto Rico and Rutgers University.

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