THE BONES OF CONTENTION Will Be Performed by The UCSB Department of Theater and Dance

The show runs from March 2nd to 6th in the Hatlen Theater.

By: Feb. 17, 2022
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THE BONES OF CONTENTION Will Be Performed by The UCSB Department of Theater and Dance

The UCSB Department of Theater and Dance will present The Bones of Contention, a new play written and directed by Professor Leo Cabranes-Grant. The play describes an imaginary Californian community of Yitipaka which tries to stick together while facing the challenging demands of emotional loss, the economy, and an environmental crisis in the aftermath of the pandemic. The show runs from March 2nd to 6th in the Hatlen Theater.

The Bones of Contention explores some of the crucial questions we all have on our minds these days: What will happen in our town after the COVID tragedy? How can we go back to "normal" after such a traumatic experience? Which emotional and financial tensions can emerge when the people decide to move on, planning their future after so much shared pain and uncertainty?

As the writer and director Leo Cabranes-Grant brilliantly puts it: "California is both a reality and a dream, and The Bones of Contention acknowledges this by creating a world that is slightly uncanny, like the state itself. California is so amazingly beautiful, and demographically and environmentally inclusive, but also so segregated, and odd, and frequently artificial, like the excessively green lawns we see at a golf club. Another traffic jam, another earthquake, another brush fire, another sudden flood in the middle of a long drought -- and then what? We must forget a lot in order to believe that we are living in paradise. Yitipaka invites its audiences to inhabit this California state-of-mind, a location where things are apparently real, but not quite. A play should play with the world, not merely reproduce it. This is, after all, an accurate definition of theater: a place where things happen as part of an illusion -- a game."

Leo Cabranes-Grant is Professor of Literature and Performance in the Departments of Theater and Dance and Spanish and Portuguese (UCSB). He has a Ph.D. in Spanish Golden Age Drama from Harvard University. His work specializes in the study of intercultural events. He has published books on Lope De Vega and Colonial Mexico. Cabranes-Grant has received several prestigious awards, including the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) Award for Best Article of the Year (2011), the Puerto Rican Institute of Culture Award for Best Play (2006), and the Asunción Award at the Pregones Theatre in New York (2011). His plays (both in English and Spanish) have been produced in San Juan (Puerto Rico), New York, Boston, and Santa Barbara. He is also the author of four collections of poetry.

Join the UCSB Department of Theater and Dance in this much needed journey through the aftermath of the pandemic. Please visit for most up to date COVID-19 protocols as they are changing rapidly. More information and tickets are available at the UCSB Theater and Dance box office, by phone at (805) 893 - 2064, and online at