"LA CHINGADA" & "LA SIRENA" A Staged Stories Series
Time & Location
About the Event
Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble presents STAGED STORIES: The Live Streamed Series
Launching Saturday, May 30 @ 6pm PST
(Ep#1-Myths, Legends, and Realities)
(Warning: episodes may contain strong language and mature content)
LA CHINGADA written and performed by Elizabeth Szekeresh
Directed by Estela Garcia
They call her La Malinche, but it’s not her name. Welcome to her TedTalk.
LA SIRENA by Anatalia Vallez directed by Xochitl Vallez
La Sirena is a monologue that introduces the character Sierra during a pivotal moment in the full-length play For Her. The monologue questions: who do we idealize, can we love someone through pain, and what are the unexpected consequences of doing so. La Sirena shares a transformation that is equal parts beautiful and heart-wrenching. Through a fantastical persona, La Sirena is an opportunity to listen to the siren, a cry for support many womxn/femmes/non-binary folks have made and continue to make today.
Q & A to follow each episode with artists moderated by Diana Burbano, ensemble’s literary director.
Produced by: Victoria Yvette Zepeda, Santi Sámano and Angela Estela Moore
Graphic by: Ruth Veronica Madrid. Original music by Moises Vázquez.
Staged Stories is presented by Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble a 501c3 non-profit organization supported by artist of our community, volunteers, and donors like you. We make every little bit counts and happy and appreciative to accept your generous donation, when you can spare it.
Listen to all 4 Episodes May 30, Jun 13, Jul 11 and Aug 4 each @ 6pm PST / 7pm MST/ 8pm CST/ 9pm EST)
Donate here: https://www.paypal.me/breathoffiretheater
Or make checks payable to: Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble
Mail to: Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble,
c/o Yolanda Mendiveles, Treasurer,
320 Colleen Place
Costa Mesa CA 92627
ELIZABETH ISELA SZEKERESH* (Writer & Actor/La Chingada) is a playwright and poet. She is a founding member and the Managing Director of Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble, and an Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights Diversity Fellow. Elizabeth’s short play Down and Brown Thanksgiving is part of the “The American Playbook: Season One” podcast, and last year she performed a shortened version of her solo play Songleader Gone Bad! at ArtShare LA, was a participant of the National Winter Playwright Retreat, and was the 2019 finalist for Echo Theater’s “Big Shout Out Special Project”. Her plays have also been presented at the National Winter Playwrights Retreat, Breath of Fire Latina Theater, Chance Theater, Teatro Frida Kahlo, Code Red Plays’ #Enough Series, 365 Women a Year Playwright Project, Segundo Jueves Latina/o Play Project at the Culver Center for the Arts in Riverside, and South Coast Repertory Studio Series. Elizabeth received a B.A. in Women’s Studies with an emphasis in Chicana/Latina Studies from the University of California, Davis.
ESTELA GARCIA* (Director/La Chingada) is an interdisciplinary angeleno. She's an actress, mask performer, playwright, director and community engagement specialist. She is a Resident Teaching Artist at Center Theatre Group and teaching faculty at CalArts and South Coast Repertory. Garcia earned her MFA from Dell'Arte in ensemble devised physical theatre and has recently been studying the SIX VIEWPOINTS theory and practice under Mary Overlie. As an actress, Garcia is best known for her portrayal of surrealist painter REMEDIOS VARO in the play by the same name and Older Esperanza in The House on Mango Street. She created Remedios Varo: La Alquimista which showed at 2018's [LAX] Festival. As a director, Estela has worked on numerous projects that support new work by emerging playwrights and theatre makers. She is excited to be collaborating on this performance with Elizabeth.
ANATALIA VALLEZ* (Writer & Actor / La Sirena) is a writer, performer, proud daughter of migrants, and UC Berkeley graduate passionate about using art as a tool for creating consciousness and community. She's performed internationally and written several plays about being a young woman of color. Her work has been published in over seven zines including a self-published zine called Manos A La Obra based on a performance art piece first presented in Downtown Santa Ana. She is currently an ensemble member of Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble in Orange County (Acjachemen land), Playback Theatre in LA (Tongva land) and the author of The Most Spectacular Mistake.
XOCHITL VALLEZ (Writer & Actor / La Sirena) is a disabled, Mexican-American, artist from Orange County. She is passionate about supporting other creatives through a number of avenues including directing, video editing, and website management. Her most recent photography featuring her sister was seen in the LA Times. Beginning with her acting debut in 2010, Xochitl’s involvement with Breath of Fire includes numerous staged readings and was the home to her directorial debut in 2018. She is most interested in expanding mainstream media’s depiction of marginalized folks and allowing those stories to take center stage.
VICTORIA YVETTE ZEPEDA* (Producer/BOFStaged Stories Live Stream Edition 2020; Director/Departure) is a Mexican director, producer, and actor from South San Diego, CA. They are a UC Irvine Alum (Honors in Drama, 2019) whose career has driven them to decolonize Western theater by pushing forward narratives of the Latinx community. As they continue to navigate their professional career and question the erasure of QTBIPOC artists, they would agree with Victory Garden’s former Artistic Director Chay Yew when he states, “...you need to break that [...] table down and build your own.” Their most recent credits include: Assistant Director of American Mariachi (José Cruz Gonzalez, South Coast Rep), Director of Culture Clash in AmeriCCa (Culture Clash, UC Irvine), Mitra’s Suitcase (Yasaman Madadi, Frida Kahlo Theater 10-Minute Play Festival 2020), Bad Hombres, Good Wives (Herbert Siguenza, UC Irvine), and Xicanas in Xicanalandia (Shanelle Darlene, Frida Kahlo Theater 10-Minute Play Festival 2019).
SANTI SÁMANO (Co-producer/BOFStaged Stories Live Stream Edition 2020, Stage Manager) is a singer and actor from San Diego, California that takes a holistic approach to art and life. While their passion lies in singing and music, Santi is led by their curiosity to expand, learn and integrate as much as possible throughout their life. Santi’s greatest goal is to use their privilege to create a radically inclusive theatre company that entertains, heals, and empowers people of color at their varying intersections, emphasizing accessibility to queer and low-income communities. They are currently a fifth year at UC Riverside, studying Theatre and French and Assistant Director for UCR’s Latinx Play Project.
DIANA BURBANO* (Literary Director/Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble) a Colombian immigrant, is an Equity actor, a playwright and a teaching artist at South Coast Repertory and Breath of Fire Latina Theatre Ensemble. Written work includes: Policarpa, Oregon Shakespeare Festival Brown Swan lab 2017, Drama League Rough Draft series May 2017, Honorable Mention, Jane Chambers Award 2017, Parsnip Ship 2017 Fabulous Monsters, Latinx Play Festival, San Diego Rep 2017, Festival51 2016 winner, about women in Punk Rock,Picture me Rollin’ (featured at the 35th annual William Inge Festival and Inkfest at 2cents.), Silueta, (about the Cuban artist Ana Mendieta), with Tom and Chris Shelton, and the TYA Shakespeare mash-up, Caliban’s Island winner 2017 Headwaters New Play Festival at Creede Repertory. (Published by YouthPLAYS). Libertadoras, Vamping and Linda were written for the 365 Women a Year project and have been performed around the world, with Linda featured in more that 20 festivals over the last year, including Center Theatre Group’s community library series. Her short play Rounds Per Second is in Smith and Kraus’s 5-minute play anthology. She is currently writing material for Center Theatre Group’s Chisme y Queso series, for Rogue Artists Plummer Park project and for Kaiser Permanente’s Educational touring show. She has also been a working actor since leaving the Professional Actors Conservatory in 1991. She originated the roles of Ama de Casa in the Spanish version of Menopause the Musical, Thumb in Imagine, and Holo-1 in the Labors of Hercules. She recently played Ana Guerrero in Jose Cruz Gonzales' Long Road Today/El Largo Camino de Hoy Dialogue/Dialogos project at South Coast Repertory. TV includes The People vs OJ Simpson, Cold Case, Betas. She played punk Praetorian guard Viv in the cult movie musical, The Isle of Lesbos She manages Sleep Till Noon Productions and The Gourmet Detective. Diana is one of the original members of the writers circle for Latino Theatre Association/ Los Angeles. She is also a member of The Dramatists Guild and The Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights.
MOISES VÁZQUEZ* (Composer/Musician) is a musician and composer, proud Santanero, and community activist. He has composed and performed original music for South Coast Repertory, San Diego Repertory, Pacific Symphony, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Brown Bag Theater of UC Irvine, Costa Mesa Playhouse, Orange County New Play Festival, The Musco Center, SanArts, Arts Orange County’s Dia de Niño Festival, El Centro Cultural de Mexico, Latino Health Access, and the list goes on. Additionally, Moises composed and performed original music for El Largo Camino de Hoy / The Long Road Today by José Cruz González, inspired by stories of the Santa Ana community.
* Breath of Fire Ensemble Member/Artist/Teaching Artist