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San Diego Repertory Theatre to present World Premiere of INTO THE BEAUTIFUL NORTH


San Diego Repertory Theatre (San Diego REP) has announced the sixth and final show of their 2017/18 season "Into the Beautiful North." This world premiere, one of the National New Play Network's rolling world premieres, was written by Karen Zacarías ("The Book Club Play," "Just Like Us") and will be directed by San Diego REP Artistic Director Sam Woodhouse. "Into the Beautiful North" begins on Thursday, March 30, 2017 and plays through Sunday, April 23, 2017 with an opening night on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at 7 p.m. on the Lyceum Stage Theatre at San Diego REP in Horton Plaza.

All the men of the sleepy Mexican village of Tres Camarones have left town in search of fortune in the USA. One night, 19-year-old Nayeli watches "The Magnificent Seven" at the local cinema and has a flash of inspiration. She grabs her goth best friend Vampi and her gay confidant Tacho, and sets out on a quest of epic proportions - to find men in the U.S.A. and smuggle them back across the border to repopulate and protect her beloved town! And so begins a 1,000 mile road trip from the Pacific Coast of Mexico through the colorful streets of Tijuana to the climactic scene at the Bahia Hotel in Mission Bay, San Diego.

Luís Alberto Urrea, author of the novel from which Zacarías adapted this play, was himself born in Tijuana and educated at the University of California, San Diego. A true native of the binational region, Urrea's novel was honored as the 2012 selection for the KPBS One Book, One San Diego program. The novel was also part of the NEA Big Read and was selected as one of Amazon's Best Books 2015.

"Nothing could be more relevant and even urgent than a story about crossing the US-Mexican border on a quest to rescue a small town from criminals and secure the future of a community," says Woodhouse. "'Into the Beautiful North' is a delightfully whimsical and heart-filled quest by a 19-year-old girl to bring her binational family back together and to resurrect the spirit and soul of her hometown. Both the award-winning novelist and the award-winning playwright speak in a voice that those of us living in San Diego on the most active international border in the western hemisphere will recognize and relish."

The ensemble cast of this world premiere features Kenia Ramirez as "Nayeli," LorenA Martinez as goth best friend "Vampi," Bryant Hernandez as the gay confidant "Tacho," Catalina Maynard as "Irma," Herbert Siguenza as "Chava," Jorge Rodriguez as "Atomiko," Javier Guerrero as "Matt" and Xavi Moreno as "Angel."

The creative team includes Ian Wallace (Scenic and Projections Designer), Jennifer Brawn Gittings (Costume Designer), Lonnie Alcaraz (Lighting Designer), Kevin Anthenill (Sound Designer), Michael Roth (Composer), Patrice Amon (Assistant Director), Danielle Ward (Dramaturg), Vanessa Mendoza (Dramaturg), George Ye (Fight Choreograper), Chandra R.M. Anthenill (Stage Manager) and Jacole Kitchen (Casting Director).

Karen Zacarías (Playwright) has written award-winning plays including "The Book Club Play," "Legacy of Light," "Mariela in the Desert," "The Sins of Sor Juana," the adaptations of "Just Like Us" and "How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent" and many more. She collaborated on the libretto for "Sleepy Hollow" and "Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises" for the Washington Ballet. The 2016 season saw world premieres of her plays "Destiny of Desire" at Arena Stage; "Native Gardens" at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park; "Oliverio: A Brazilian Twist" at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; and "Ella Enchanted: The Musical" at First Stage. She is one of the inaugural resident playwrights at Arena Stage and is a core founder of the Latino Theatre Commons. She is the founder of Young Playwrights' Theater, an award-winning theater company that teaches playwriting in local public schools in Washington, D.C. Karen lives in D.C. with her husband and three children.

Sam Woodhouse (Director) co-founded San Diego REP with D.W. Jacobs in 1976, and has since worked as a director, producer or actor on more than 280 productions. As an actor, he has performed on The REP stages in "The Seafarer," in the title role of "King Lear," "Proof," "Hamlet," and with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra in the title role of Stravinsky's "L'Histoire du Soldat." His recent directorial work with The REP includes: "Manifest Destinitis," "Rapture, Blister, Burn," "The Oldest Boy," "Violet," "Oedipus El Rey," "Honky," "El Henry" (with La Jolla Playhouse), "Detroit," "Venus in Fur," "In the Heights," "Federal Jazz Project," "Clybourne Park," "The Who's TOMMY," "In the Next Room or the vibrator play," "Threepenny Opera" and "Water & Power." In 2011, he directed "American Night: The Ballad of Juan José" for the Denver Center Theatre Company. In 2003, he was awarded the Patté Shiley Award for Lifetime Achievement by KPBS and the prestigious Alonzo Award by the Downtown San Diego Partnership. In 2006, he and Jacobs were honored with the Craig Noel Award by the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle for 30 years of artistic dedication to downtown and diversity.

"Into the Beautiful North"
Written by Karen Zacarías
Based on the novel by Luís Alberto Urrea
Directed by Sam Woodhouse

Previews: Thursday, March 30 - Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Opening Night: Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Closing Night: Sunday, April 23, 2017

Cast (in order of appearance)

Kenia Ramirez as "Nayeli"
Catalina Maynard as "Irma/Others"

Bryant Hernandez as "Tacho"
LorenA Martinez as "Vampi"
Javier Guerrero as "Matt/Others"
Xavi Moreno as "Angel/Others"
Jorge Rodriguez as "Atomiko/Others"

Herbert Siguenza as "Chava/Others"

Production Team:

Sam Woodhouse, Director

Ian Wallace, Scenic and Projections Designer

Jennifer Brawn Gittings, Costume Designer

Lonnie Alcaraz, Lighting Designer

Kevin Anthenill, Sound Designer
Michael Roth, Composer
Patrice Amon, Assistant Director

Danielle Ward, Dramaturg
Vanessa Mendoza, Dramaturg
George Ye, Fight Choreographer

Chandra R.M. Anthenill, Stage Manager

Performance Schedule:


  • Thursday, March 30 at 8 p.m.
  • Friday, March 31 at 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 1 at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 2 at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, April 4 at 7 p.m.

Opening Night:

  • Wednesday, April 5 at 7 p.m.

Regular Performances:

  • Thursday, April 6 at 8 p.m.
  • Friday, April 7 at 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 8 at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 9 2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 12 at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, April 13 at 8 p.m.
  • Friday, April 14 at 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 15 at 2 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 15 at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 16 at 7 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 19 at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, April 20 at 8 p.m.
  • Friday, April 21 at 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 22 at 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 22 at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 23 at 2 p.m.

Tickets range from $38 to $65 and can be purchased in-person at the San Diego REP Box Office, by calling 619.544.1000, or online Active military, teacher and senior discounts are available. Student tickets are available for all performances for just $20 each. Prices and dates subject to change.

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