By Cecilia Cackley
Commissioned by GALA Hispanic Theatre
Washington, D.C. – GALita, a program of GALA for the entire family, is proud to present the world premiere of Between Earth and Sky/Entre la tierra y el cielo by Cecilia Cackley. Commissioned by GALA Hispanic Theatre and directed by Elena Velasco, this bilingual production will be presented at GALA Theatre, 3333 14th Street NW, Washington, DC 20010 from October 13 through October 27, 2018. The theater is located one block north of the Columbia Heights Metro station on the Green and Yellow lines. Parking is available at the Giant Food garage on Park Road NW.
Dolores, a young girl living on a small Texas ranch during the Great Depression, yearns to become an astronomer. When her aunt Ynés Mexia, the pioneer Mexican-American botanist, comes for a visit and talks about her trek through the lush Amazon region of South America in search of new plant specimens, she inspires the inquisitive Dolores to break with family and societal expectations and follow her dreams.
“Between Earth and Sky”, states playwright Cecilia Cackley, “was inspired primarily by Ynés Mexia, a Mexican- American woman who lived an extraordinary life and contributed greatly to scientific knowledge in this country.
She does not appear in most science or history books and this play is my attempt to introduce her and her work to a wider audience. I want young audiences to know that there have always been women, especially Latina women, who have followed their dreams and accomplished great things, even if the wider world hasn’t acknowledged them.”
The play was workshopped and presented as a rehearsed reading in April 2018 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of New Visions/New Voices 2018.
Student matinees for Between Earth and Sky are scheduled week days on October 15 – 19 and October 22 – 26, 2018 at 10:30 am. Performances for the general public are on Saturdays, October 13; October 20; and October 27 at 3 pm. The duration of this show is approximately 45 minutes and is appropriate for the entire family.
ABOUT PLAYWRIGHT, DIRECTOR AND PRODUCTION
Cecilia Cackley is a Mexican-American playwright and puppeteer based in Washington DC. She is the artistic director of Wit’s End Puppets and co-creator of their shows Cabinets of Kismet, Saudade and Malevolent Creatures. Her bilingual children’s plays, Fábulas Mayas and Blancaflor – The Girl Wizard, have been presented by GALA and toured to DC schools. Cecilia is an affiliated teaching artist with Imagination Stage, Capitol Hill Arts Workshop and Ford’s Theater. Internationally, she has performed or taught workshops in France, Canada, Armenia, Guatemala and El Salvador. She is also a company member of GALA Hispanic Theatre and Young Playwright’s Theater.
Elena Velasco (Director) is the Artistic Director of Convergence Theatre, a DC-based multidisciplinary performance collective whose work focuses on issues of social justice. She is an associate professor of theatre at Bowie State University where she teaches directing, physical theatre and theatre for social justice. Ms. Velasco’s director/choreographer highlights include: Guerrilla Theatre Works: A New Nation, This Is All Just Temporary, Guerrilla Theatre Works: At What Cost?, Witch, Bhavi the Avenger (Convergence); Córiolanas (Capital Fringe); Hansel and Gretel, Rough-Faced Girl, Magic Paintbrush, Tío Conejo (Synetic Theater); Bid to Save the World (Source Festival); Godspell (Bowie State University); La Pérdida, Nurse Fawn (Catholic University). Her credits as a choreographer include Midsummer Night’s Dream (Avant Bard), Hampton Years (Theatre J), and 1776 (Keegan Theatre). Ms. Velasco serves as the co-director of Multiculturalism and Diversity for the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, and is an affiliated artist with Óyeme, Imagination Stage’s educational workshops and touring production. She has a MFA in Directing and BA in Drama from Catholic University. www.elenavelasco.net
Featured in the cast are Delbis Cardona, Karen Romero, Karen Morales, and Camillo Linares, who all appeared in in GALita’s VolcanO last season. Appearing for the first time with GALita is Adriana Oliver García. Scenic Design is by Mariana Fernández, who designed Como agua para chocolate at GALA. Lighting Design is by Alberto Segarra, who designed Yo también hablo de la rosa at GALA, and Costume Design and Properties are by Alicia Tessari, who designed VolcanO and Blancaflor for GALita. Sound Design is by Koki Lorthipanidze, who is working on his first GALita production. Catherine Nunez is Stage Manager and Devin Mahoney is Technical Director.
Since 1980, GALita has produced children’s theater by Hispanic playwrights in both Spanish and English that inspire a sense of joy, discovery, pride and identity in our community’s children. GALita also has commissioned new works and adaptations based on classic Hispanic literature, presented international theater companies such as Teatro Gayumba from the Dominican Republic, produced several children’s film festivals, and collaborated with Kids Euro Festival on children’s programming.
Tickets are $10 each (children), Adults $12 (general public performances). For more information call 202-234-7174 or visit www.galatheatre.org.