Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Beginning of a Beautiful Producing Partnership

By Jeffrey Fauver, Publicity Manager

Yesterday I saw a run-through of Tanya Saracho’s El Nogalar in the Goodman’s Polk Rehearsal Room—the company’s last run-through before they move into the Owen with the set next week. No “spoiler alerts” here; all I’ll say is that it continues to amaze me what a group of actors and a director are capable of in just two weeks of rehearsal. Especially with a new play! Tanya has been so active in the process writing, rewriting, dewriting (or is it unwriting?) and keeping all of her friends, family and fans up-to-date on the whole process on Facebook and Twitter. I can only imagine the amount of work the company is putting in outside of rehearsal just to keep up.

Above: Charin Alvarez and Sandra Delgado in rehearsal for El Nogalar. Below: Henry Godinez and Sona Tatoyan in Jose Rivéra's Massacre (Sing to Your Children), a co-production between the Goodman and Teatro Vista.

What a way to kick off the Goodman’s new three-year producing partnership with Teatro Vista!

El Nogalar marks the fourth joint production between the Goodman and Teatro Vista (TV). The relationship began in 1995 at the old Goodman when co-founding member of TV Henry Godinez—prior to his appointment as resident artistic associate at the Goodman—proposed a co-production between the companies: Cloud Tectonics by José Rivera. Sixteen years, three productions and five biennial Latino Theatre Festivals later, both companies have decided to take the plunge and commit to a three-year collaboration dedicated to new work by Latino writers. The first? Tanya Saracho. The second and third? Who knows.

A commitment to new work is not an easy one to make, let alone a three-year co-commitment between two companies to as-yet-to-be-determined playwrights and plays. It’s risky. But it’s a risk Chicago audiences insist we make. And I for one couldn’t be more excited.

Performances of El Nogalar begin Saturday, March 26.

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