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About LA Escena 2020

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LA Escena is Los Angeles’ first festival of Hispanic classical theater, featuring staged readings, experimental re-imaginings, and adaptations of works from Golden Age playwrights on both sides of the Atlantic. The festival celebrates the comedia—witty seventeenth-century dramas that deal with issues of class, gender, sexuality, and urban life—in many forms and seeks to showcase their continuing relevance to today’s audiences. As part of Diversifying the Classics, LA Escena promotes an expanded vision of the classics onstage and Hispanic culture in the theatrical canon.

LA Escena 2020 will include innovative digital performances by performers around the world, site-specific experiences that explore Los Angeles’ vibrant and diverse culture/history, and the fifth edition of the Golden Tongues adaptation series—new explorations of Hispanic classical plays by LA writers in partnership with Playwrights’ Arena. Blending the classic and the cutting-edge, the Old World and the New, LA Escena will bring audiences together for a virtual celebration of the theater’s unifying power across cultures and distances.


LA Escena, el primer festival de teatro clásico hispano en Los Angeles, presenta lecturas dramatizadas, adaptaciones y nuevas versiones de obras del Siglo de Oro escritas a ambos lados del Atlántico. El festival celebra la comedia—esas ingeniosas obras del siglo XVII, que tratan problemas de clase, género, sexualidad y vida urbana—y muestra cómo nos habla el día de hoy. Como parte de Diversifying the Classics, LA Escena promueve una visión más amplia de los clásicos en el escenario y de la cultura hispana dentro del canon teatral.

LA Escena 2020 incluye innovadores espectáculos digitales creados por artistas de todo el mundo, experiencias en sitio que exploran la vibrante cultura e historia de la ciudad de Los Ángeles, así como la quinta edición de Golden Tongues, programa que adapta obras clásicas en español por escritores de LA, en conjunto con Playwright’s Arena. Combinando lo clásico y lo innovador, el viejo mundo y el nuevo, LA Escena nos transporta a través de siglos y océanos desde la comodidad de nuestras casa, reuniendo a un amplio público para celebrar los poderes unificadores del teatro a lo largo y ancho de diversas sociedades y culturas. LA Escena presenta lo mejor de la comedia clásica en el siglo XXI.


Equipo

Barbara Fuchs: Founder & Artistic Director

Barbara Fuchs is Professor of Spanish and English at UCLA. She is the founder and director of  the Working Group on the Comedia in Translation and Performance and its Diversifying the Classics initiative, which has been working to promote Hispanic classical theater since 2014. With Jon Rivera of Playwrights’ Arena, she launched Golden Tongues, an adaptation initiative connecting Los Angeles playwrights with comedia to produce brand-new plays. In 2018, she founded LA ESCENA, designed to bring comedia to Los Angeles audiences. 

Professor Fuchs has published widely on early modern literature and culture and contemporary performance. She has also translated a wide range of early modern Hispanic classics, including seven comedias with the Working Group, now available on the Diversifying the Classics open-access website or in print from Juan de la Cuesta press. Recent projects include a translation of Lope de Vega’s rediscovered Women and Servants (Juan de la Cuesta 2016); The Golden Age of Spanish Drama, with Gregary Racz (Norton Critical Editions 2018); and 90 Monologues from Classical Spanish Theater, translated and edited with Laura Muñoz and Jennifer Monti (Juan de la Cuesta 2018).

Professor Fuchs is currently writing a book on virtual theater, informed by her experience with the 2020 edition of LA ESCENA. In 2020-21, she serves as the UCLA Clark Professor, directing a program on “Resituating the Comedia” at the Clark Memorial Library and Center for 17th and 18th-Century Studies.

Diversifying the Classics team:

For detailed bios, please click here.

Marta Albalá Pelegrín, Javier Patiño Loira, Paul Cella, Rafael Jaime, Saraí Jaramillo, Robin Kello, Laura Muñoz, Rhonda Sharrah, Cheché Silveyra, Aina Soley, Samantha Solis