While “We Are Hispanic-American Women…Okay?” is a play focusing on Hispanic sisterhood, generational wisdom and body politics, it’s also a cross-cultural work with which everyone can identify.
“The characters are similar to a lot of women and to many powerful women who have influenced me,” explains playwright Patricia Crespin, a native of Bernalillo, New Mexico. “The play shows how women constantly endure.”
Teatro Paraguas, which staged the play a decade ago, re-stages it from February 7 through 24.
The action takes place in Ramona’s kitchen. Ramona often finds herself taking care of her husband and negotiating conflict between her two daughters. She also has to deal with her drunk and disillusioned mother and her sarcastic teenage granddaughter. The four generations of women argue and explore what it means to be part of their family and Latina in today’s world.
The play was first produced at New Mexico Highlands University (NMHU) in 2006 when Crespin was working towards a bachelor’s degree with a major in vocal performance.
“I looked at the script to see if I needed to update it,” says Crespin, who went on to earn a master’a degree in dramatic writing at the University of New Mexico. “I found that I really didn’t need to rework it. It’s just as true today as it was in 2006.”
Crespin took some twists and turns in life before focusing on writing, acting, directing and producing. At one point she thought she would become a lawyer. She spent time in the military and also lived in Florida for a while. Today, she teaches public speaking at NMHU.
“I directed the first production at Highlands, but for this production I’m trusting director Alix Hudson and the cast completely,” she says. “It’s a little nerve-wracking but also exciting to pass the work on to someone else and see how other people interpret it.”