HOPE VILLANUEVA is a stage manager and playwright based in the DC area and originally from California, with her first full length play just produced in 2018 for the Women's Voices Theatre Festival. Her plays have received readings at The Kennedy Center, The Black and Latino Playwright's Conference, The Discovery New Play Festival, and Kitchen Dog Theatre. She also moonlights as a director and designer and is a proud member of Actor's Equity. In these tumultuous times, Hope believes that the theatre is an essential resource for the social and emotional education of our society.
MOTOWN is not just a company. It is an icon. This was the soundtrack of decades of change in America and still serves as the inspiration for current innovators in music. So it only seems inevitable that someone would see that this needed to be adapted for the musical theatre stage.BWW Feature: 2018 HELEN HAYES AWARDS at Theatre Washington May 15, 2018
The DC theatre community hurried along the waterfront on Monday night, attempting to beat the looming, black storm clouds that threatened, but this could not dampen the vibrant crowds as they entered the recently opened Anthem for this year's Helen Hayes Awards. This stunning, modern space will be greeting the likes of Belle & Sebastian, Janelle Monae, and Nine Inch Nails in the coming months, and on this evening, theatre creative showed off their finest.BWW Feature: VIETGONE at Studio Theatre, a Play for This Moment May 14, 2018
The preshow speech of VIETGONE is spoken by the playwright, in which we learn that the play is a love story of how Mom and Dad got together. We also learn that the Vietnamese characters will speak like action heroes/Joss Whedon archetypes and that the Americans will speak... Well, some of it will be words. As Marc de la Cruz, who plays Quang, the playwright's father, says, 'The characters speak and relate to each other as many young Americans today despite the fact that they are Vietnamese and it's 1975... Also, the play is hilarious in an 'omigosh I can't believe they went there' kind of way.' Instantly, we are aware that the universe of VIETGONE is a one of a kind place. Director, Natsu Onoda Power, elaborates: '...it allows audience to perceive 'Vietnamese' characters NOT as the 'other'; it is so rare. (In this play, 'American' is the other).' Regina Aquino, who plays Tong, the playwright's mother, adds, 'From the very first page I was immediately impressed by Qui's flipping of the stereotype script... doing to the Americans what is done to Asian characters in film/tv/theatre all the time. It was shocking and I was totally in love with how subversively clever the writing was throughout the entire play.'BWW Interview: HOLD THESE TRUTHS at Arena Stage March 16, 2018
Prejudice and Immigration are teachable moments in Arena Stage's HOLD THESE TRUTHS, a one-man play about a young man who stood alone against the injustice of WWII Japanese American internment camps. This interview features director, Jessica Kubzansky, and actor, Ryun Yu, discussing the parallels between 1940's racial issues and policies and today.