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OSF presents Latino play project

Intended to develop and present new plays and provide a forum for artists, producers, scholars and audiences to discuss and advance Latino theater, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's annual Latina/o Play Project will include play readings, a panel discussion, a variety show and “Cafecito” chats.

“The Latina/o Play Project at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is continuing to grow and expand by joining the national theater conversation of how the work of Latina/o artists impacts our field and our community,” says Christopher Acebo, OSF associate artistic director and the project's producer. “I'm excited to present new work, engage in discussions about aesthetics and open up channels of communication to learn how OSF can continue to nurture, support and present the work of Latinos in our theaters."

The Latina/o Play Project begins with a "Medianoche Variedad," or Midnight Variety Show, at 11 p.m. Friday, Sept. 25, in the Black Swan Theatre on the OSF campus, 15 S. Pioneer St., Ashland. The three-day event continues at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 26, with a reading of playwright Luis Alfaro’s "This Golden State: Part One, Delano," at the Historic Ashland Armory, 208 Oak St. Alfaro's play was co-commissioned by Magic Theatre of San Francisco and OSF. The reading is directed by Juliette Carrillo, with dramaturgy by Olga Sanchez.

On Sept. 26, the events include a "Cafecito" — an opportunity for visitors to connect over coffee — at 1 p.m. at Mix Bake Shop, 57 N. Main St. A panel discussion will follow at 4:15 p.m. in Carpenter Hall at OSF. The discussion will be moderated by OSF resident dramaturg Lydia G. Garcia and feature Brian Eugenio Herrera of Princeton University, Tiffany Ana López of University of California at Riverside and Chantal Rodríguez of the Latino Theater Company of the Los Angeles Theatre Center. 

At 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 27, there will be a reading of "La Ruta" by Isaac Gómez of Victory Theater in Chicago, directed by Laurie Woolery, with dramaturgy by Garcia. The reading will be followed by a reception at noon.

A second "Cafecito" featuring Acebo and American theater artist Diane Rodríguez will be held at 10 a.m. Sept. 27 at Carpenter Hall.

All events are free, but advance tickets are required because of space constraints. Tickets and information are available by calling 541-482-1111, ext. 295, or emailing obedm@osfashland.org.

Left to right: Luis Alfaro, Freda Casillas, Sara Guerrero, Tiffany Ana Lopez and Marissa Chibas Preston participate in a 2013 Latino Play Project panel discussion. Photo courtesy of Brad Eastburn