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This project was successfully funded on December 16, 2012

Alondra Was Here

by Chisa Hutchinson


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The Impetus

As a female playwright of color, I feel obligated to present stories that, for historical, political or just plain inexplicable reasons, have been left out of the canon.  So when a colleague challenged me to write something inspired by ancient Greek text, I admittedly rolled my eyes a little.  In the middle of researching, however, just as I was thinking that every interesting myth has been adapted to death, I stumbled upon some ancient graffiti.  I was shocked by how modern some of it felt: "Cornelia is a whore"..."Down with Septimus"..."Marcus got me pregnant"... that kind of stuff.  I noticed that pretty much everything carved into those walls was sex and politics and totally relevant to what’s happening to us right now.

Through a wild amalgamation of theater, dance, street art and audience participation, my work Alondra Was Here tells the story of a young woman who loses her sister--and finds courage--in a brutal police-state.  It questions the efficacy of civil disobedience, explores the effects of corruption, and presents issues of gender in a way that could serve to warn in a society where politicians feel compelled to opine publicly on what kind of rape qualifies as legitimate.

The Play

Sisters Alondra and Anise have had enough.  People in their town are disappearing; young women are being brutalized and the perpetrators are rewarded with political power.  So they decide they're going to do something about it--something dangerous and rebellious and probably very stupid, but something nonetheless.  When their plan goes awry, and Alondra disappears, Anise is left to drift in a veritable ocean of guilt and indecision.  Haunted by the ghost of her sister, she must figure out if she's capable of following through on the ultimate act of subversion alone.  Through her dilemma, I hope to get folks wondering: can ordinary people really make an impact in a dysfunctional society, or does the ability to change the course of life--for better or for worse--only move from the top down?

The Production

The play is slated to run from May 2 - May 26, 2013 at the Wild Project in New York City.  I already have a full cast and crew, including a director, a tech director and a stage manager I trust completely.  Now I just need funds to pay them all. 

The minimum goal of $15,500 will cover the fees for the entire cast and crew-- that's 7 actors, 4 designers, 3 techies, the director and the stage manager.  This is my top funding priority because I refuse to be that producer who expects artists to work for nothing.  Anything over the minimum goal will go toward space rental, marketing, and set construction (including rigging for aerography).

Finally, given the themes the play explores, I plan to partner with a social justice organization-- right now the Women's Prison Association is looking likely--for supplemental events and a benefit performance that will bring attention (and a few dollars) to the cause.

Mmmm.  Theatre with purpose.

The Plea

If this project rings some bells for you or if you believe in theatre that has the potential to provoke and compel, then please consider making a contribution to Alondra Was Here

Thank you so much for reading.  Very cool of you.

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