Diversionary Theatre Presents LEARN TO BE LATINA, 11/11-12/18


Groundbreaking playwright Enrique Urueta's Learn To Be Latina is an uproarious romantic comedy that uses humor to explore issues of gender, race and identity, popular culture and fame. Performances begin November 11, 2011.

Learn To Be Latina follows Hanan, a beautiful and promising pop star, whose Lebanese heritage is seen by record executives as a stumbling block. Rather than scrap her career, the record label decides to exploit her slightly Latina looks and package her as the next J.Lo. Anxious for stardom, Hanán surrenders to "Latina Boot Camp".

Inspired by screwball comedies and musicals of the 1930s and 40s, Learn To Be Latina is a multi-media dance infused laugh riot about a young woman's quest to make the big-time and come to terms with her sexuality and ethnic identity. Bitingly satirical and decidedly politically incorrect, Latina skewers every popularly held sacred cow with gusto. In other words, this production contains offensive language and subject matter that not may be suitable for the faint of heart. But is completely appropriate for those willing to laugh at themselves and familiar stereotypes.

Playwright Enrique Urueta's plays include The Johnson Administration, The Danger of Bleeding Brown, Learn To Be Latina, and Forever Never Comes. He has received a Theatre Bay Area CASH grant, a Theatre Bay Area New Works Fund award for Forever Never Comes and was selected by Sir David Hare as a runner-up for the 2009 Yale Drama Series prize for The Danger of Bleeding Brown. Learn To Be Latina received Aurora Theatre Company's Global Age Project award, won the inaugural Great Gay Play contest sponsored by Pride Films & Plays, and was named Best Ensemble Comedy of 2010 by the SF Weekly, which also named him Best Up-And-Coming Playwright of 2010. Southern Theatre Magazine identified him as one of "40 Groundbreaking Playwrights" who are "changing the U.S. theatre." He is a proud member of NoPassport, an on-line collective of theatre artists who advocate for cross-cultural theatrical exchange, with an emphasis on US Latina/o and Latin American theatre. Most recently he received a Jerome Fellowship for 2011-12 from The Playwrights' Center of Minneapolis. He holds a BA in Theatre from The College of William & Mary and a MFA in Playwriting from Brown.

Diversionary Theatre is thrilled to welcome director Isis Saratial Misdary back to San Diego to helm the production. Misdary has directed in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Cairo, Tunis and London. In San Diego, Isis directed Medea (chosen by SD Reader as the "pick of the week"), Tanya Barfield's Blue Door and the highly acclaimed production of Ronald McCants' Strangest Fruit, all through La Jolla Playhouse/University of California San Diego. Isis co-founded the Cairo-based Egyptian theater troupe WAMDA, who use traditional Egyptian folk spectacle to address contemporary issues. She is the recipient of the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans, a Ford Foundation Fellowship, a Fulbright Grant to Egypt (studying with epic storytellers, puppeteers and music hall performers), the National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Career for Development Program for Directors and a Van Lier Directing Fellowship at Second Stage Theater. Isis holds an MFA in Directing from University of California San Diego. She is a member of SDC, the Lincoln Center Directors Lab and the Women's Project Directors Forum.

Learn To Be Latina is Written by Enrique Urueta. Directed by Isis Saratial Misdary. Featuring Tamara Dhia, Faeren Adams, Amanda Davis, Olivia Espinosa, Dangerfield G. Moore, and Steve Smith. The Learn To Be Latina design and production team includes Matt Scott (Set), Michelle Caron (Lights), Raquel Barreto (Costumes), Kevin Anthenill (Sound), David Medina (Properties), Luke Olson (Projection Design), Anna Sarao (Choreographer) and Julie Daniels (Stage Manager).

Diversionary's Audience Extras programs provide the audience with the following value-added opportunities to socialize before and after performances. Attendance to these events is at no additional cost:

Fritz's Lounge: Enjoy wine or a cocktail in the newly designed lobby-Fritz's Lounge! Come early and meet your friends, snack on delicious treats and check out the gallery and poster display. Lounge opens one hour prior to curtain.

Meet The Artists: Stay after the show and talk with one of the artists involved in creating the production in an interactive and thought provoking discussion of themes explored in the show. November 18,20 and December 16.

Gal Pal Friday: Ladies! Enjoy a pre-show cocktail party and an entertaining night of theatre. Meet friends, bring a date or come as you are-ready to mix and mingle. Ticket $20, includes hors d'oeuvres and cash bar. All are welcome to this event.

Sundown Sundays: Cap off the weekend with complimentary pizza and ½ price wine and cocktails before the Sunday evening regular performances.

Diversionary Theatre develops new works and produces plays and musicals that explore the issues, characters and stories of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in all its complexity and diversity. Founded in 1986, Diversionary has grown into a professional theatre company that nurtures LGBT artists in the development of new works of theatre. Through play commissions, readings and workshops, Diversionary regularly collaborates with other theatre and arts groups to present special events and co-productions, thus involving a wider arts community in our mission.

Previews are November 11-13 and 17-18. Opening Night is November 19 at 8pm. Performances run through December 18, 2011, at Diversionary Theatre - 4545 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92116.

Tickets: Friday & Saturday - $33.00; Thursday & Sunday - $31.00; Opening Night - $45.00; Previews - $20; Students/Senior 60+/Military receive $4 off with valid ID.Groups of 10-29 receive a $4 discount, and groups of 30+ receive an $8 discount.

For tickets or information, call the Diversionary box office at 619.220.0097 or visit www.diversionary.org. Diversionary Theatre is located at 4545 Park Blvd. San Diego CA 92116.

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