After a year of programming at Luna Central, formerly Live Bait Theater, Teatro Luna has officially transitioned out of the Clark Street storefront space and the ladies are lacing up their character shoes in preparation for a year of touring and new work development and presenation. As they say goodbye to Luna Central, they say hello to Stage 773 as the season continues with a groundbreaking first-ever mainstage play written by a male-identified playwright, Your Problem With Men by Emilio Williams opening March 22, 2013 in rep with Chicago Theatre Sweatshops inaugural production, Tables & Beds - also by Williams.
"Luna Central was the incubator for a host of new programs, talent, and creative development," says Executive Director Alexandra Meda, "and now it's time to take our shows on the road. In 2012 alone, we presented six new and original full length plays for full performance runs, took four major trips to the East Coast, performed touring shows at over 30 colleges, universities, museums, and other cultural institutions; provided a forum and space for public readings for 10 Latina playwrights nationwide in the carefully curated LUNADAS New Works Reading Lab; launched the VeraLuna youth program; produced and presented over 75 one-off events; and managed a venue as a multicultural hub for other theaters and artists to rent.
Luna has its sights set on a new vision for a space that is better suited for the company's increased touring focus and plans to open a gallery loft-style Luna Central by end of Summer 2013 that will host weekly events and smaller productions. "It's time to harness the explosion of creative energy brought on by the new Ensemble," Meda continues, "and let it propel us into the year ahead."
After the Ladies of Luna turned off the lights at Luna Central Clark Street, they headed straight to New York for the Under the Radar Festival and Symposium at The Public Theatre, a part of the APAP | NYC Global Performing Arts Marketplace and Conference, as one of 8 artists/organizations invited to pitch their work to a wide spectrum of international presenters and producers. The Ladies showcased their four-show touring roster and two projects that are in development.
Season 12 at Teatro Luna is roaring full steam ahead even as the last bit of lumber from the first-ever family-friendly holiday show A Very Luna Christmas is struck and stored away. The season dedicated to family and female rebellion continues with award-winning Spanish playwright Emilio Williams' relationship satire Your Problem With Men-- opening at Stage 773 in March, and then Teatro Luna will close out Season 12 with a new production of Diane Rodriguez's Living Large in a Mini Kind of Way (which Luna produced in 2012) in affiliation with 16th Street Theater.
Season 2013 will kick off with the workshop production of Supermujeres, an ensemble devised piece exploring the lives of women of color who serve and protect, including police, military, firefighters, medical first responders, and social justice workers. The development team is currently interviewing women for this project. Season 13 also launches our five year commitment to develop 5 new play commissions by 5 established Latina playwrights outside of the company adding 25 Latina roles to the American Theatrical canon.
"While we're proud to be the nation's only all-Latina theater company producing a full season of original work," says Ensemble member Kristiana Colón, "it's a big responsibility to serve not only the artistic needs of women of color in Chicago and the Midwest, but nationwide. We're thrilled at the opportunities ahead to continue our commitment to engaging both coasts." Teatro Luna is preparing to develop a new devised project (it will be their 10th) centered on DNA and lineage that will world premiere in Los Angeles in 2014, as it continues to cultivate relationships and collaborations in New York for 2013 and beyond.
"2012 was a cauldron of creative development for Teatro Luna," according to Meda, "we developed existing projects and launched new ones at a breakneck pace and we're ready to burst into a new year and a new season with our bags packed and ready to go."
Teatro Luna is America's all-Latina theatre dedicated to creating original devised and single-author work that honors Latina lives and showcases the talents of Latina/Hispana artists. Founded in 2000, Luna is dedicated to expanding the range of Latina roles visible on the Chicago stage and beyond. Luna produces a full season of their original full-length and one-off events year-round and tours colleges/universities, festivals and venues across the country with a blend of ensemble-created performances, workshops, and lectures. Our varied education programs serve both Adult Latina/All Women of Color and Youth including our ambitious LUNALABS series dedicated to providing free training for women pursuing professional careers in playwrighting, directing, producing, acting, and dramaturgy.