Workshop Production of KISSING CHE Set for Celebration Theatre, 4/2-23


The recent Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle Award winning Celebration Theatre has announced the workshop production of a new play, Kissing Che, written by Brooklyn playwright Augusto Federico Amador and directed by award-winning New York-based director Victor Maog. Kissing Che will begin Tuesday, April 2nd at 7:30pm followed by a performance every Tuesday night closing on April 23rd at the Celebration Theatre, 7051B Santa Monica Blvd in Hollywood.

Amador's Kissing Che, was developed during his time as a member of the 2011 Emerging Writers Group at The Public Theater in New York City and was featured in their "Spotlight Series", with Tony Award-winner Adriane Lenox, directed by Victor Maog.

Kissing Che centers around a man named Reina who is dying in a Miami nursing home. He claims to have been Cuba's last famous drag queen ("I turned Kings into Queens!") and to had a love affair with the iconic Cuban revolutionary, Che Guevara. Tamika, an African-American nurse, strikes up a friendship with him. United by untold pasts, shared confessions change their lives forever against the background of Cuba in the late 60's and 70's, when Castro's regime begins it's systematic and brutal persecution of homosexuals. Amador's play with its seductive visual sense, heart-breaking characters, and tale of resiliency was recently a finalist for the 2013 Terrence McNally Award.

The cast features stage veterans Sal Lopez (films include Selena and American Me; founding member, The Latino Theater Company), Saidah Arrika Ekulona (Ruined, Manhattan Theatre Club/Goodman), Juan Francisco Villa (Steppenwolf, Goodman), Lelia Parma, and Celebration Theatre Co-Artistic Director Michael A. Shepperd (Little Shop Of Horrors, Bway; Caroline Or Change, Ahmanson; Steppenwolf).

Victor Maog (Director) is a New York City-based stage director and producer with national and international credits. He's collaborated at NYSF/Public Theater, Hartford Stage, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Intar, Ma-Yi Theatre Company, New York Theatre Workshop, Lark Play Development Center, Signature Theatre, The New Group, MCC Theater, New Dramatists, and directed/taught for NYU/Tisch School of the Arts, University of Pennsylvania, Fordham University, and others. He started his career assisting directors Mary Zimmerman (Metamorphoses), Mark Lamos (Edward Albee's Tiny Alice with Richard Thomas), Bill Rauch (James Still's The Long Bridge Over Deep Waters), Ted Sperling (Michael John LaChuisa's Rashomon with Audra McDonald and Michael C. Hall), and Peter DuBois (Adrienne Kennedy's Mom, How Did You Meet the Beatles?). Victor was one of six directors in the United States to become a Fellow of the 2004-06 NEA/TCG Career Development Program, in addition to being awarded the 2009 Sweet Briar Fellowship at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, 2005 Paula Altvater Fellowship at Cornerstone, 2000-2002 Van Lier Directing Fellowship at Second Stage, and the 1993 U.S. Dept. of Labor's Presidential Award for Outstanding Academic Enrichment for his collaborations with disadvantaged youth. A member of the Lincoln Center Director's Lab, OBIE-winning Partial Comfort Productions and the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, Victor is the former Director of Theatre for the Perry-Mansfield, the oldest performing arts school in the nation. A. Rey Pamatmat's Out of Joint, a play he commissioned and produced at P-M, was just honored with the 2012 Princess Grace Special Project Award. He's the newly appointed Artistic Director of Second Generation Productions (2g) and Director of the Waterwell Summer Theater Lab @ PPAS.

AUGUSTO FEDERICO AMADOR (Playwright) is the son of a pianist/composer father and a Austrian-chef mother. He was a playwriting fellow with the 2010/2011 Emerging Writers Group at the fabled Public Theater in New York. His plays have also been presented at The Lark Play Development Center, Terra Nova Collective's Groundbreakers Series, Repertorio Espanol, Red Room, Queens Theater in The Park, and INTAR Theater. In Los Angeles, the Audrey-Skirball Kenis Theater Projects, Playwrights Arena, The Blank Theater, Ricardo Montalban Theater, Imagined Life Theater and the John Anson Ford Theater as well as playwright residency at the Arkansas Repertory Theater in Little Rock, Ark. His plays have been finalists or semi-finalists for the Eugene O'Neill Conference, The Metlife National Latino Playwriting Award amongst many others, as well as a being a strong contender for the Sundance Theater Lab. Recently, Augusto was named as a finalist for the 2013 Terrance McNally Award. His other plays include, Stillborn, Jesus Descending, Solterona and Waking Up. Augusto has developed two original TV pilots based on two of his plays and is in the process of adapting another of his plays into a feature screenplay.

Kissing Che workshop production will open April 2nd on Tuesday, 7:30 pm and run every Tuesday through April 23rd at Celebration Theatre, 7051B Santa Monica Blvd (1/2 block east of La Brea) in Hollywood. Tickets are $10 for all performances. For tickets, please call (323) 957-1884 or visit to purchase tickets online or to view a complete schedule or for further details.

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