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New Bi-Lingual Theatre Project Teatro Chelsea Launches With SONIA SE FUE

On January 14-17 you can view their online presentation of the Spanish language play Sonia se fue by the acclaimed Boston playwright Melinda Lopez.

New Bi-Lingual Theatre Project Teatro Chelsea Launches With SONIA SE FUE

A new bi-lingual theatre project has launched this year in Chelsea: Teatro Chelsea! Teatro Chelsea creates theatre at the crossroads of languages, cultures, and histories, and seeks to amplify and honor the voices that speak to these unique experiences. And by kicking off their first full-length production with a Melinda Lopez play, they are amplifying quite the amazing voice!

On January 14-17 you can view their online presentation of the Spanish language play Sonia se fue by the acclaimed Boston playwright Melinda Lopez. Performances will be streamed live at 7:30pm on YouTube and FacebookLive, and feature English subtitles. Talkbacks with the actors, playwright, and special guests will follow each performance.

Set in Minneapolis and Havana, Sonia se fue tells the story of a family across generations. Sonia, whose son has just enlisted in the army following 9/11, is confronted by her own childhood memories of conflict: being forced to leave Cuba at the rise of Castro's rule. Sonia se fue examines the impact of large cultural and political forces on the lives of ordinary men and women and examines questions such as: What do we owe our parents? Can we forgive the past?

The production is being directed by Armando Rivera, who also leads Teatro Chelsea as its Program Director. Mr. Rivera is excited "for Teatro Chelsea to be part of a growing and thriving arts scene in Chelsea. Sonia se fue is an exhilarating first step into the potential of producing dedicated bi-lingual theatre to be enjoyed by the city's diverse community."

Since this will be an online presentation, Teatro Chelsea was able to audition actors from across the country. Talent has joined the cast from as far away as Texas, and as close to home as Chelsea, Everett, and Jamaica Plain.

Local actor Ines de la Cruz shares, "Representation in the arts, especially in theatre, matters. I am proud to form part of the experience of telling Latinx stories in Spanish to audiences that traditionally may not attend theatre performances. Sonia Flew is a story that will resonate with many of our community members, and it is so important that the story is told in their native language." Fellow local actor Victor Hugo Hart shares, "It's wonderful to be involved in this local community Spanish production of Sonia se fue with Teatro Chelsea. In the past, working with Escena Latina I have seen just how excited audience members can get when viewing a production in their native language."

Melinda Lopez developed Sonia Flew in 2003 as part of the Huntington Playwrighting Program. The play had its world premiere in 2004 and was the inaugural production at the Wimberly Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company. The production received two Elliot Norton Awards: Best New Play, and Best Production. It has been performed in countless American theaters since!

In 2018 the Spanish language translation, Sonia se fue (translation by Alberto Sarraín), was presented as part of the 2018 Festival Nacional de Teatro, in Havana and Camaguey Cuba. Now it will be presented by Chelsea's own Teatro Chelsea!

For tickets to the production (pay-what-you-want pricing, no minimum, $20 recommended), visit: www.teatrochelsea.com

A panel discussion, hosted by Teatro Chelsea and the Huntington Theatre Company, will take place on Thursday January 7th at 7pm. Melinda Lopez will join a conversation with Armando Rivera, Hartford Stage artistic director Melia Bensussen, and Tufts professor and translator Noe Montez about the possibilities created by working in both Spanish and English. Information on how to view the discussion will be posted on the Teatro Chelsea website: www.teatrochelsea.com

Playwright Melinda Lopez is the recipient of the 2019 Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Achievement. She is a multiple award winning playwright and performer, and the Playwright-in-Residence at the Huntington Theatre Company. Plays include: MALA (Best New Play, Elliot Norton Award, available on Audible in Spanish and English,) YERMA (adaptation,) BACK THE NIGHT, BECOMING CUBA, ORCHIDS TO OCTOPI (Best New Play, IRNE) and SONIA FLEW (Elliot Norton, Best New Play, Best Production.) Melinda also performs on stage, radio and in film.

Ms. Lopez is active providing humanitarian aid for the people of Cuba, and was mentioned by President Obama in his speech to the Cuban and American people in 2016. Mayor Marty Walsh declared October 29, 2016 "Melinda Lopez Day" in the City of Boston.

Teatro Chelsea celebrates Latin cultures, showcases and fosters local talent, builds community in Chelsea through arts engagement and collaboration, and is establishing a hub for Latino artists in the Boston metropolitan area.

Teatro Chelsea was founded by Apollinaire Theatre Company and is supported by MassDevelopment's TDI Creative Catalyst Grant.

For information on how to log on and view the performances, please visit: www.teatrochelsea.com




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