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The Latinx Theatre Commons Announces The Diane Rodriguez Teatrista Award

Diane Rodriguez is an award-winning, multi-hyphenate theatre artist who tirelessly advocated for other artists and opened doors for future leaders in the field.

The Latinx Theatre Commons Announces The Diane Rodriguez Teatrista Award

The Latinx Theatre Commons (LTC) today shared the creation and inaugural recipient of The Diane Rodriguez Teatrista Award, "The Diane." It is the LTC's first award dedicated to an individual working in the theatre field who is committed to increasing Latinx representation across disciplines. With this award, the LTC aims to continue the legacy of Diane Rodriguez (1951-2020), an award-winning, multi-hyphenate theatre artist who tirelessly advocated for other artists and opened doors for future leaders in the field.

Jacqueline Flores, LTC Producer, says, "The LTC is excited to continue supporting the work of Latinx artists with The Diane, and to give them full autonomy over their work via an unrestricted grant. In a poem written by Evelina Fernandez about Diane, she says, 'my childless but mother to hundreds sister.' This award is our way of continuing the nurturing spirit Diane imparted on everyone she met and the impact she has made on so many of us."

To honor Diane's own work in comedy through Latins Anonymous, Culture Clash, and her own plays, this award was first announced in person in early June at the 2022 LTC Comedy Carnaval. In a 2018 interview with the National Endowment for the Arts, Diane reflected, "I think that humor is the biggest weapon to change people's minds."

The Diane Rodriguez Teatrista Award recipient will receive a $5,000 unrestricted grant. Nominations for the 2023 award will open in Fall 2022. The LTC will seek applicants who are nominated by peers and colleagues throughout the field, and award recipients will be selected by an appointed committee. With this approach, the LTC aims to amplify Diane's spirit of generosity and her commitment to empowering fellow artists throughout her remarkable career. Diane Rodriguez served on the LTC's Advisory Committee for six years.

About the Inaugural Recipient, Patricia Garza

Patricia is the Producer and Director of Los Angeles Programs at Los Angeles Performance Practice (LAPP) supporting the production and presentation of contemporary performance. Before joining LAPP, they served as the Director of Programs and Engagement at the Network of Ensemble Theaters (NET) overseeing programmatic activities and marketing/communications and have now shifted into the role of NET/TEN Program Director continuing to manage NET's cornerstone grant program. A former member of the artistic staff at Center Theatre Group (CTG) for over a decade, Patricia filled roles spanning artistic, education and community partnerships, and management. Patricia had the honor of working alongside CTG Associate Artistic Director Diane Rodriguez for six years. Together they engaged world-renowned international and local companies on multi-year projects focused on collective and ensemble creation. Patricia frequently speaks at public events, facilitates group conversations, and has served as a grant panelist for the NEA, Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, and The Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture, among others.

Patricia's passion is working with other theater professionals nationally on issues surrounding anti-racism towards collective liberation with a focus on the LGBTQIA+ community through artEquity. Patricia has an MFA/MBA in Theater Management from California State University, Long Beach, and a BA in English with a minor in Theater Studies from UC Berkeley. They reside on Tongva/Kizh land known as East Los Angeles with their wife and two adorable dogs.

The inaugural award recipient was selected by a group of seven nominators: Amelia Acosta Powell, Jacqueline Flores, Anne García-Romero, Lisa Portes, José Luis Valenzuela, Abigail Vega, and Karen Zacarías.

Learn more about the award and Patricia at https://howlround.com/diane-rodriguez-teatrista-award.

The Latinx Theatre Commons (LTC) is a national movement that uses a commons-based approach to transform the narrative of the American theatre, to amplify the visibility of Latinx performance making, and to champion equity through advocacy, art making, convening, and scholarship. The LTC is a flagship program of HowlRound.

Our values include Service, Radical Inclusion, Transparency, Legacy & Leadership Cultivation, and Advancement of the Art Form. The actions of the LTC are championed by a volunteer Steering Committee made up of passionate Latinx theatremakers and scholars from across the country. The LTC Steering Committee a self-organized collective that has chosen to adopt a commons-based approach to advocate for Latinx theatre as a vital, significant presence in the New American Theatre. We foster emergent national leadership through an organic organizing method of activating our networks and expanding our circles of connection. We seek to celebrate diverse connections, honor our past with reflection, and envision our future with optimism and enthusiasm.

HowlRound, located in the Office of the Arts at Emerson College, is a free and open platform for theatremakers worldwide that amplifies progressive, disruptive ideas about the art form and facilitates connection between diverse practitioners. Using a commons-based approach, HowlRound invites open participation from theatremakers worldwide around shared values and envisions a theatre field where resources and power are shared equitably in all directions, contributing to a more just and sustainable world. For more information visit howlround.com.




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