Lark Play Development Center Partners with Mexican Cultural Institute for 7th Annual U.S./Mexico Playwright Exchange

Lark Play Development Center Partners with Mexican Cultural Institute for 7th Annual U.S./Mexico Playwright Exchange

The Lark Play Development Center in collaboration with Mexico's National Fund for Culture and Arts (FONCA) has announced the 2012 U.S./México Playwright Exchange Program. For the seventh year, the Lark will host playwrights from México and pair them with U.S. playwrights, actors, and directors for a ten day cultural exploration which establishes ongoing channels of communication between artists in both countries. This year's exchange is presented in partnership with Mexican Cultural Institute.

One of Lark's many international exchange initiatives-which have involved artists from nearly 50 countries-this program focuses on the creation of stage-worthy translations of new plays from México; it also introduces the visiting international writers and guest observers from other countries to New York's theater scene, industry leaders, and the Lark community. The Lark's Artistic Director John Clinton Eisner says of the program, "It is the act of listening to one another that unifies us, forming the trust and respect that are the foundations of civil society. This is baldly apparent in the wake of our recent presidential election and the nation's renewed awareness of shifting demographics. Forming a sustainable platform for bilateral exchange between the U.S. and México is critical right now so that we can share and compare ideas, practices, cultural perspectives and personal experiences and begin to create a language for talking about how we will intersect and connect in the future."

Public readings of these newly translated works will be presented on December 8 and 9 at the Lark BareBones Studio, followed by a closing night Celebración on December 10 at The Peter Jay Sharp Theatre on 42nd Street. All events are free and open to the public.

This year's exchange includes Leakages and Anticoagulants by David Gaitán, translated by Julián J. Mesri, directed by Mallory Catlett; Ropes by Bárbara Colio, translated by Maria Alexandria Beech, directed by Lou Moreno; Schnauzer Duck by Saúl Enriquez, translated by Mariana Carreño King, directed by May Adrales; and Mestiza Power by Concepción león Mora, translated by Virginia Grise, directed by Daniel Jáquez .

The 2012 U.S./México Advisory Committee includes Maria Alexandria Beech (playwright), Mariana Carreno-King (playwright), Ana Graham (Artistic Director, Por Piedad Teatro Producciones), Daniel Jáquez (director), Debbie Saivetz (director), Tobie Stein (Director, Brooklyn College Graduate Program, Performing Arts Management), Caridad Svich (playwright), and Andrea Thome (U.S./México Playwright Exchange Program Director).

This program is a collaboration between the Lark and Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes (Mexico's National Fund for Culture and Arts) with support from the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York, and City of New York Department of Cultural Affairs. The Washington Jefferson Hotel is the official hotel or the U.S./México Playwright Exchange Progam.

December 8-9 at 3pm & 7pm
full schedule at
@ Lark BareBones Studio
311 West 43rd Street, 5th Floor (between 8th and 9th Avenues)

December 10 at 7:30pm
@ The Peter Jay Sharp Theater
416 West 42nd Street (between 9th and 10th Avenues)
(followed by a reception at the Lark)

Reservations are required.

For more information on Lark Play Development Center, visit or call 212-246-2676 x224.

A laboratory for new voices and new ideas, the Lark Play Development Center provides playwrights with indispensable resources to develop their work, nurturing artists at all stages in their careers, and inviting them to express themselves freely in a supportive and rigorous environment. The Lark reaches into untapped local populations and across international boundaries to seek out and embrace unheard voices and diverse perspectives, celebrating differences in language and worldviews. By encouraging artists to define their own goals and creative processes in pursuit of a unique vision, we believe we are reinvigorating the theater's ancient and enduring role as a public forum for discussion, debate and community engagement. The Lark is led by Artistic Director John Clinton Eisner, and Managing Director Michael Robertson.

Maria Alexandria Beech
Her play Wombtown, commissioned by Primary Stages and Aspen Theater Masters, will be presented in a reading in November 2012. Her play, Breaking Walls, was produced a The Cherry Lane Theater. Her play, Little Monsters, was produced by Primary Stages and Brandeis Theater Company. Her translation of Eduardo Machado's The Cook was produced by Stages Theater. Musicals: Class, with composer Karl Michael Johnson, was presented in a reading at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Member: The Dorothy Strelsin New American Writers Group at Primary Stages (Class, Charity, Bonds, and Little Monsters), Hispanic Playwrights Lab at Intar (Gloria). Translations: Luis Ayllon's The Camels and Hitler In My Heart by Noe Munoz Morales (Lark Play Development Center). Alumnus: BA (cum laude) and MFA in playwriting, Columbia University, and MFA in musical theater writing, NYU. Awards: The Aspen Theatre Master's Visionary Award, 2009, Outstanding New Script Award at the Planet Connections Theater Festivity forWhat Are You Doing Here, 2011. Alex is a Prime Candidate for Membership at the Ensemble Studio Theatre, a member of the U.S./México Advisory Committee at the Lark. She has served as a panelist at the New York Foundation for the Arts and for the Pony Award at the Lark Play Development Center.

Mariana Carreño King
Her plays include Ofelia's Lovers (Mabou Mines Residencies, 2007-2008 and 2008-2009), Rare Encounters (Hispanic Playwrights in Residency Lab at Intar, 2008), Darkroom and The Wake (NewWorksLab, 1996 and 2007), Fool's Journey (finalist, 2001 O'Neill Playwrights Conference), La Mujer del tiempo (Autonomous University of Queretaro, Mexico), Two Minutes in the Lobby and Dessert Stories, (Labyrinth Summer Intensive Retreats and at the Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre, among others venues). Her short plays, Pitahayas (finalist, 2003 Actors Theatre of Louisville's Heideman Award), Mexico '68, Riding Hope, Night of the Cat-Sitter, Clowns and Static have been presented at The Public, The Milagro Theatre, Intar and with LAByrinth Theatre Company. She collaborated with Daniel Jáquez in Dance for a Dollar, a dance-theatre piece to be produced at the Miracle Theatre in Portland Oregon in 2013. As a director, she has worked at Stages Repertory Theatre (Houston, TX), Aaron Davis Hall, Intar, The Lark, The Cherry Pit and The Neighborhood Theatre among others. She has also acted in many off and off-off Broadway productions. Mariana is a member of LAByrinth Theatre Company, alumna of the Hispanic Playwrights in Residency Lab at Intar Theatre, and has been involved with The Lark's U.S./México "Word Exchange" Program as a juror, translator, director or observer since the program's inception.

Bárbara Colio
Dramaturg. Born in the desert of Baja California and currently lives in México City. Barbara is a member of the national System of Creators of Art. She has been a writer in residence in London, New York, and Spain. Her theatrical pieces have been premiered and published in Mexico, United States, Spain, France, England, and all over South America. She has received various awards and honors for her playwriting including: International Award for Dramatic Writers of 2004 in Spain for Pequenas Certezas, Scenic Creator Award for Ventana Amarilla, Award for Literature of Baja, California 2002 for La Habitacion, The National Victor Hugo Award 2009 and Award for Best Journalism Play presented by the Association of Theatrical Journalist of Mexico for Usted esta aqui, National Award for Dramaturgy of Bellas Artes 2009 and Awarded the Gold Medal of Bajacaliforniano for Cuerdas. Her play Little Certaintiescan be found in English published by Nick Hern Books in the anthology "Mexican Plays". You can find out more about her work at

Saúl Enríquez
Born in Cardel, Veracruz in 1979. Graduated from ANDA as Actor, Director, and Dramaturge. Started his career as actor in Mexico City and has participated in over thirty plays at the best venues in the country. His prime opus being Los Mochados. In 2004 he relocated to Cancun and founded Nunca Merlot Theater company. He wrote and directed his Trilogy of Solitude: Poema Para Tres, Corazon, Desazon and Esprinbreiquer, which won the prestigious IV and V Muestra Internacional de la Dramaturgia and Muestra Nacional de la joven Dramaturgia, Coloquio de Teatro de N.L., IBERESCENA, AND ECTI; AMONG OTHERS. He has twice received the Honor PECDA. This year, he premiered Corazon, desazon in Queretaro and Monterrey, Intrigulis in Mexico City, Poema Para Tres in Monterrey, Pato Shnauzer in Quintana Roo, Mexico City, and (coming up) in Tijuana, and Graves, pero Estables in Quintana Roo. He has plays published in journals such as "Anonimo Drama" and "Texto de la Capilla". He is now part of the International Dramaturges of The Royal Court Theater of London. He is currently in Paris presenting Autopsie de L'Amour (Poema ParaTres) in Paris, directed by Anne-Laurie Teboul.

David Gaitán
Born in 1984 in Mexico City. Has studied acting in the National School of Theatrical Arts from which he graduated in 2009. In 2006 he founded the theatrical company Teatro Legeste where he has written and directed 5 major plays: ReMar, La Pura Idea Excita, Filial en 4, and Escurrimiento y Anticoagulantes y Rastro. In 2009 co-founded the theatrical company Ocho Metros Cubicos where he an actor and dramaturge. There he has directed Pato Schnauzer, Disertaciones Sobre Un Charco, and El Camino del Insecto. As an actor he has been in more than fifteen works, both of his own direction and those of by distinguished directors, and four films, he has written thirteen plays, of which ten have been staged and four published, and has directed seven pieces. In 2010 he was selected to participate in the group of International Dramaturges of The Royal Court Theater of London. He has been invited three times to the Muetra National de Teatro. At the moment he is a director at the Theatrical Company of the University Veracruzana in Xalapa, Veracruz where he will be directing a piece of his own creation.

Virginia Grise
From panzas to prisons, from street theatre to large-scale multimedia performances, from princess to "chafa" – Virginia Grise writes plays that are set in bars without windows, barrio rooftops, and lesbian bedrooms. Her play blu was a recipient of the Yale Drama Series Award and was published by Yale University Press. Her other plays include Making Myth, Cuerpo Descubierto, rasgos asiaticos, and a farm for meme. Her one-woman show The Panza Monologues (co-written with Irma Mayorga) will be published by The University of Texas Press in the Fall of 2013. Virginia is a Time Warner Fellow at the Women's Project Lab and a recipient of the Princess Grace Award in Theatre Directing, The Playwrights' Center's Jerome Fellowship, and Pregones Theatre's Asuncion Award for Queer Playwriting. She holds an MFA in Writing for Performance from the California Institute of the Arts.

Concepción león Mora
Born in Merida, Yucatan, México in December of 1973. In 1981 she started her studies in Folklore and Acting. Later receiving a diploma in Direction for Children's Theater, Dramaturgy, Protocol, Literature, and Journalism. As a professional actress she has been involved in over seventy productions. Her play Las Creyentes is included in the theatrical collection "New Dramaturges of the Yucatan." In 2002 she assisted in the reunion of W.P.I. in Manila, Philippines where she mounted a reading of Las Creyentes. Her play, Mestiza Power, published in "Tierra Adentro," is often presented in the most representative festivals of the country; it also is kept in repertory in various countries including Spain, Argentina, Peru, and The United States. Mestiza Power forms part of The Didactic Anthology of Mexican Theater which contains the most relevant plays of the past twenty years. Her plays have been published by U.N.A.M., The Cultural Center Rojas of The University of Buenos Aires, in addition to various journals and periodical such as Trilogos, El Milagro, The National Institute of Theater in Argentine, Tramoya, Paso de Gato, and The National Drama Center of Madrid-Consulta-I.N.B.A. Her play Cronica de un Presentimiento was first mounted as part of the III International Festival in the city of Merida and was co-produced by I.N.B.A. in the XXVIII Muetra National de Teatro. In 2008, she had a premiere of her play Santificaras las Fiesta in Buenos Aires. She has lectured at the dramaturgical seminary sponsored by the Royal Court in cooperation with The Hellenic Cultural Center. Has been a participant in The VII and IX International Week of Contemporary Dramaturgy. Also a participant in the IV and IX Muetra National of young dramaturges. She is a recipient of the PECDA Honor as artist for 2010-2011 and is the director of The XII National Scholastic Theater Program. She was selected as resident artist for FONCA 2012. She is also a member of the National Collection of Artists. In November 2012 she premiered her play Todavia…siempre under the direction of Claudio Valdes Kuri. She is currently artistic director of the theatrical company Saas Tun and is a frequent contributor to the periodical Milenio Yucatan where she writes the column "Donde Mora el Leon", a theatrical and cultural critique.

Julián J. Mesri
A New York based Argentinean-American director, playwright, and composer. He is currently an Emerging Artist of Color Fellow at New York Theatre Workshop, where he is developing a large scale original work based on Gerhart Hauptmann's "The Weavers" using a multicultural cast. He represented the United States in the 2012 edition of Panorama Sur, sponsored by Siemens and the Goethe Institut, a seminar featuring playwrights from all over Latin America led by distinguished Argentine writer/director Alejandro Tantanian. He was 2010-2011 Van Lier fellow at Repertorio Español where he directed Rafael Spregelburd's La estupidez in its New York premiere (ACE nominee, Best Direction) and Calderón de la Barca's La dama duende and this year will be presenting Lope De Vega's Fuenteovejuna on the main stage. He is also the Playwright Spotlight at Magic Futurebox, which will present three of his plays in 2013. He participated as a director in the 2010 U.S./México Playwright Excange at the Lark, and has directed readings for Repertorio Español, Monarch Theatre, NYU and Teatro IATI. His play The King in Exile was presented in a new translation by the playwright in Buenos Aires in 2011. He is also a proud alum of EMERGENYC at the Hemispheric Institute, NYU, where he presented the audio-piece Inventing the Audience in 2010. BA Williams College.

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