The core concept of duende is the visceral force with the power to touch one human soul to a complete stranger’s. It’s that invisible string of empathy that ties two actors to one another in a scene, that latches to an onlooker, a thread of human continuity.

 

In order to have both relevance and duende, the play must resonate with the daily confrontations of humans - power, sexuality, need for love, fear, joy. There is no dichotomy in my plays, no villains or heroes. Just humans with visceral, honest, desperate, life-driving needs.

 

My focus is to guide the world of the play – relationships between performers, architecture of the performance space, and environmental elements of sound, light, textile - to reflect for an audience heightened conditions of humanity. My theatrical aesthetic, stylistically, is all over the board. My projects draw upon the potency of classical theatre, community activism, spectacle, and experimental schools of thought.  I am heavily influenced by the beacons of theatrical device – Caryl Churchill, Qui Nyuen, Moliere – as well as deconstructed performance art, the spectacle of acrobatic stilt theatre in the school of Nemcatacoa Teatro, Carpetbag Brigade, Grotest Maru.

 

As a theatre artist, I focus on a core question: How do institutional arts, traditionally perceived as exclusive, fulfill a social role as a reflection of cultural identity within a socio-geographic place? From a classic text presented on a proscenium stage, and an experimental guerilla-style visual poem on a street corner, I ask the same questions: how is this relevant to this moment/day/neighborhood/city/country/world?

 

All successful plays – highly stylized or carefully naturalistic, seeped in pop art or faithfully historical – must deepen the audience’s appreciation for what it is to be a living human.  

 (pictured: top girls, photo: sate)

devising & director