Mile-High, New Plays & Soul Sisters
* This was an unpublished draft from February 13th, 2013!
I had the immense blessing of mixing business with pleasure this month when a theatre gig took me to Denver Colorado. I have a lot of family and friends there and was able to connect to them all, even if it was just for a moment. My best friend from High School took me out for Margaritas on my first night in Denver! One of my cousins came over to my hotel room with a bottle of bubbly and we sat on my bed and talked into the night, another cousin took me out for great New Mexican style food with her three little angels. My Tia took me to a great Italian restaurant that gave us an extra meal to take home. I spent Superbowl Sunday with more cousins, big and little, and my Tia and Tio, which was super great because it was one of my primo’s birthdays who I never get to see. My mom drove up and stayed with me and we of course found the best happy hour! Most of them were able to get to see the play reading! The schedule was grueling, but I was thankful for the short but sweet time I had catching up with those who are so dear to me…
Because of the high altitude, you get drunk really fast. So everyone’s drunk all the time.
This past two weeks I had the pleasure of being a participant in the Denver Theatre Center’s New Play Summit Festival. I have tons of family in the mile high city as well as one of my dearest friends from High School, so I have been to Denver a lot and I grew up in New Mexico so I am not new to high altitudes. This time however I was affected with acute altitude sickness! Ugh! Luckily it wasn’t severe, but it was a very weird sensation. Many of us in the group that were from out of town felt really tired, short of breath, had headaches and couldn’t sleep at night. We were working long hours so of course we were tired, but there was this added layer of feeling really sluggish and for me a little dizzy. I did my best to drink plenty of water and rest during our 10 minute breaks. I did a little reading and learned that a great thing to do 5 days before traveling to a high altitude is to start taking Ginko Biloba. Another helpful cure/prevention is taking Advil/Ibuprofen for altitude sickness. I had such an amazing time at the Denver Theatre Center and am crossing my fingers that I will get to work there again & next time I will be prepared!
* Do you have any remedies for altitude sickness?
* What is the highest place you have been?
* Have you ever been to Denver?
“A play should give you something to think about. When I see a play and understand it the first time, then I know it can’t be much good.”
T. S. Eliot
Being a part of the Denver Theatre Center’s New Play Summit Festival was like being at a weekend summer camp for theatre lovers! Sure we worked hard, but I think we played even harder! I was in awe of the facility, the rehearsal rooms, the stages, the staff and everyone involved. Listening to the playwrights share 2 minutes of their works in progress at The Playwright’s Slam felt like being able to get a glimpse into their minds where they hear so many voices… The final party on Saturday night was off the hook, playwrights, actors and everyone danced until 2 in the morning! It was such a room full of energy. One of the play readings really touched me and I hope to one day see a full production of it. The Vast In Between by Laura Eason was so simple and heartbreaking. The story of a woman in search of herself being pulled by forces outside of herself was so easy to get hooked into, but then didn’t leave you with a pretty package tied up with a bow, I walked out of there really wondering what happened next, and I loved it! Click HERE to watch a YouTube video about the play! The second piece that blew my mind was The Black Odyssey by Marcus Gardley, an adaptation of The Odyssey. I can’t even describe how amazing it was, the journey was so deep and I would need to see it again! HERE is a video about this piece! Both pieces made me wonder about the human experience and the journey to find oneself. Click HERE to see a video about the play I was involved in “Just Like Us” by Karen Zacarias.
* What is the last play you saw?
* What types of plays do you like the most? (Comedy, Drama, Musicals, etc.)
* If you could write a play, what would it be about?
Make new friends,
but keep the old.
One is silver,
the other is gold.
~ Scout Song
I remember learning this song when I was a Brownie, I never made it to be a Girl Scout, but this part of the song always stuck with me. As a theatre artist I am constantly meeting new people and some become really good friends, even if it is just for the temporary time of the play we are working on, there are moments of true sharing, friendship, confiding and playing. Being in the cast of “Just Like Us” brought me together with an amazing group of artists from all over the country. I especially enjoyed my time with the girls who, along with me, were the four main girls in the play. Yunuen Osegura Pardo, Ruth Livier and Adriana Gaviria were my Soul Sisters for the two weeks we spent in Denver for the Play Festival. On our Monday off we decided to go on an adventure! I borrowed my cousin’s car and we headed to Roxborough State Park. We had a picnic, saw a huge herd of deer, took tons of photos and just enjoyed each other’s company. From now on no matter where we are working, we can always reach out to each other and share a reminder of an inside joke, wish each other luck on a new project and just say hey. We will always have a connection from the time we spent in a room creating a new play, the time we spent eating and drinking at a new downtown Denver hotspot and the time we spent taking a moment to enjoy nature and the beauty that surrounds us!
* What adventures have you taken with “new” friends?
* When is the last time you went for a walk in nature?
* Who do you remember being your first friend?