Reflections on directing HERMANOS written by Moises Rodriguez, starring Carlos Sanchez and Alex Angeles

Hermanos written by actor, writer, and Comfort/Disturb colleague, Moises Rodriguez is the first theater project I got involved with in 2019. It is also the second theater project I direct since becoming pregnant last year. Directing and growing a human being was a trippy experience. I am very proud of my body for staying active during the process of growing a person and being creative. It kind of goes hand in hand. My emotions and reactions to rehearsal processes would be followed by a kick or nudge from within. I was not alone on this journey.

Hermanos starred Carlos Sanchez and Alex Angeles, two very talented actors here in our city whom I suggest the entire planet work with. Not only was their history together a huge compliment to Moises' piece, but their on stage presence and work ethic was a pleasure to collaborate with and witness. They pushed this piece to a really cool place where life met theater in the most intimate way, a brother's brawl.  Their energies complimented the tension in the room. One of my favorite memories as an audience member was hearing people laugh in the most uncomfortable of places when the scene was meant to be quiet. As if they too were trying to alleviate some of the trapped unresolved issues presented on stage.

I loved this piece in that it helped me get in touch with my masculine side, while my body was doing a very feminine act. I have to admit that there is a huge part of me that honors patriarchy, the male lineage, and favors male company. It comes from being raised Christian and calling God a He. It comes from being raised by a great dad. It comes from being bullied in the playground the worst by other girls. I also grew up with the misconception that womxn shouldn't trust each other, and that we're all competing for...whatever. All false! All thoughts I have to challenge all the time in order to be a well rounded person. This piece was about two brothers, but it also made me reflect about me. And our preparation for the piece was openly talking about what we hide out of pride, and what men specifically hide behind humor and machismo.

These actors really did take the piece to a cool place. Our writer, Moises Rodriguez, also gave us freedom in the scene to explore and question masculine behavior. A huge thank you to everyone who showed up to support the piece. A tip of the hat to the writer for his generous breath, and to the actors who with every gesture brought to life a tender and complex relationship that can only be described as truncated love between two brothers too proud to say I am sorry.

The play took part of the Teatro Frida Kahlo Theater's 10 Minute Play Festival Part II 2019.  It ran from February 1-17th, 2019. I am extremely proud of the outcome and encouraged to continue directing with confidence and appreciation for the talent and craft. When actors are dedicated and superb, the work goes to another plane never imagined. Proud of the team, proud of the work, honored to have been trusted with such a timeless and delicate piece, so close to the writer's heart. Thank you for the trust Moises, Carlos, and Alex. Muchas bendiciones, and I hope we work together again!

Alex Angeles and Carlos Sanchez in Hermanos
written by Moises Rodriguez, directed by Rosa Navarrete
Photo credit: Elvia Susana Rubalcava