LA Escena 2022 - Diversifying the Classics
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September 12-18, 2022

The LA Escena festival of Hispanic classical theater will be back September 12–18, 2022. The third edition of Diversifying the Classics’ biennial festival will kick off with a streamed online reading from New York’s Red Bull Theater and continue with a weekend of free live performances on the UCLA campus.

LA Escena is Los Angeles’ first Hispanic classical theater festival, organized by Diversifying the Classics. Since the inaugural edition in 2018, LA Escena has brought the best of Southern California theater together with acclaimed performers from around the world to celebrate the comedia in performance and adaptation.
This year we’ll offer productions at UCLA by internationally recognized Spanish theater companies Nao d’Amores and Állatok, three new adaptations from our popular Golden Tongues series, David Dalton’s Forces of Nature, and fun for the whole family with the Dragoncillo Puppet Troupe. Red Bull Theater will present a virtual reading of Lope de Vega’s The Capulets and the Montagues, a play based on the same source as Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, in a translation by Dakin Matthews.
Monday, September 12
Red Bull Theater and Diversifying the Classics present Lope de Vega’s  
The Capulets and the Montagues, a translation of Castelvines y Monteses by Dakin Matthews
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Friday, September 16
GOLDEN TONGUES
Your Home in Me As I in You, by Amanda L. Andrei
Based on Lope de Vega’s El animal de Hungría
How do we understand what lies beyond the known, the urban, the so-called civilized? What if the natural forces that we fear had surprising things to teach us?
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Forces of Nature, adapted and directed by Dave Dalton
Based on Guillén de Castro’s The Force of Habit
What shapes our genders: our parents, our surroundings, or ourselves? This unconventional adaptation updates Guillen de Castro’s 1610 comedia La fuerza de la costumbre to question our society’s relationship with identity and toxic masculinity.
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Saturday, September 17
GOLDEN TONGUES
Florence and Normandie, by June Carryl
Based on Calderón’s To Love beyond Death
Los Angeles, early 1990s. As tensions boil and the threat of violence looms, two families entwined by both location and love find themselves living the American racial nightmare.
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GOLDEN TONGUES
Traces of Desire, by Lina Patel
Based on Lope de Vega’s The Widow of Valencia
Can desire be inherited? Or rather, can the inability to fulfill it trickle down through a family?
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NAO D’AMORES and COMPAÑÍA NACIONAL DE TEATRO CLÁSICO present Miguel de Cervantes’
Numancia
What are the costs of war, both for the losers and the victors?

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Sunday, September 18
Dragoncillo Puppet Theater presents Fool-itos
A kid-friendly rendering of Hispanic Classical theater, featuring our beloved Johnny Frog!
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UCLA Early Modern Ensemble presents Spain and New Spain: Early Music
Music through time. Enjoy Renaissance and Baroque music as it was played centuries ago.
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ESCÉNATE and ÁLLATOK present Lope de Vega’s
El animal de Hungría
El animal de Hungría (The Beast of Hungary) tells the story of a queen forced into the wilderness by her power-hungry sister. The fallen queen steals her niece and raises her as a feral girl, but when that girl falls in love, she must confront human society for the first time…
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COMEDIA PRACTICES

As a part of LA Escena, we will hold a symposium for scholars and practitioners aimed at exploring recent projects on performance practices, education, and outreach that seek to disseminate Hispanic early modern theatre within the US and beyond.

Festival Credits:

Members of Diversifying the Classics: Marta Albalá Pelegrín, Barbara Fuchs, Rafael Jaime, Saraí Jaramillo, Rachel Kaufman, Robin Kello, Dandi Meng, Laura Muñoz, Javier Patiño Loira, Rhonda Sharrah, Aina Soley Mateu, Samantha Solis, and Jesslyn Whittell.

Artistic Coordination and Production in Spain: Lorenzo Papagallo and Jorge Tejedor. 

Supported by:

UCLA Chancellor’s Arts Initiative
UCLA Departments of Spanish & Portuguese, English, Theater
UCLA Center for 17th- and 18th-Century Studies 
UCLA CMRS Center for Early Global Studies 
UCLA Division of Humanities
UCR Department of Theatre, Film, and Digital Production
Acción Cultural Española
Spain-USA Foundation