Melinda Lopez's Cuba

by:  Charles Haugland at 03/21/2014

Ten years after Boston playwright Melinda Lopez’s breakout hit Sonia Flew premiered at the Huntington, her newest work Becoming Cuba takes us back to the mercurial and volatile past of the island. An epic and passionate family story, Becoming Cuba zeroes in on the year 1897, late in the series of brutal and bloody civil wars that presaged the Spanish-American War.

The child of two Cuban nationals, Lopez can trace the path of the Cuban wars for liberation through her family tree, and the spark for this play is born out of an ancestral myth. “There is a legend in my family about my great-grandmother, who lived through the Cuban War of Independence,” Lopez says. “When she was 16, the Spanish came to take over her farm and sent her family to internment camps. My great-grandmother refused to go. She took her pet pig under her arms and walked up into the mountains to join the rebels. The play that I eventually wrote is not her story, but it’s certainly infused with her indomitable spirit.”

As Lopez began the play, she envisioned a widow, Adela, “whip smart, very Spanish, and formal.” Born on the island, Adela left the countryside where her brother and father remain active in the rebellion and married a Spaniard who runs a pharmacy in Havana. When her husband is killed in the war, she takes over the apothecary in his stead, adopting his steadfast loyalty to Spain as well. At the play’s rise, Havana is heavily blockaded, and the pharmacy struggles to stock even basic supplies. Adela’s business serves the aristocratic Spanish military (and the occasional, nosy American reporter).

When Adela’s brother Manny appears, begging for supplies, Adela responds practically. “My problem is I owe too many taxes, and I have too few customers,” she tells Manny. “The ones with money to pay me are the soldiers trying to kill you, and then you come for a handout. I should just ask them to send you the cash directly, and keep me out of it.” Adela’s reticence to get involved contrasts starkly with her impassioned sister Martina, who roots for the island to throw off the Spanish oppressors, to trade the Spanish sport of bullfighting for Cuba’s game of baseball.

In shaping the story, Lopez took inspiration from the Arab spring, which was unfolding as she created the first draft. “The media was saturated with images of people taking to the streets in the name of self-determination,” Lopez says. “Ordinary people — with shops and businesses and babies in their arms — who sought something more from their lives and their countries. What makes a person wake up one day and take action like that? And I realized too, that what I felt watching this struggle unfold in another country was a lot like what Americans might have felt watching Cubans butchered by Spain in 1897. I could substitute ‘Cuba’ for ‘Syria’, and the stories were so similar...But then, like now, American intervention leads to greater complexities and unintended consequences. We keep learning that lesson over and over.”

Lopez builds the theme of metamorphosis into the elemental structure of the play, as the specters of those who shaped Cuba’s destiny haunt the stage. “I love watching actors transform,” Lopez shares, “so many of the actors also play an apparition or ghost.” From a conquistador to the wife of Cuban folk hero Hatuey, these voices from history show the reverberations of war extend far beyond an individual time and place. And as the voices in Lopez’s play echo in our ears, so do the five hundred years of evolution for the Cuban people echo through the life of one loyal but achingly vulnerable woman.


  1. You may go with a Rolex Lady–Datejust in your treasured. rolex replica uk These days, you will have a sufficient amount of purposes into the search -- so why to shop for a good Panerai see? replica chanel Above and beyond pieces you may look at meal table clocks or simply pendulum clocks for Panerai that will be evenly trendy. The webs see accessories what are the to guide you at the time you get hold of wedged when using the distinct challenge – choosing the ideal an individual's Rolex see to shop for? replica rolex At the time you figure out see shop and listen to any set you'll possess the reply. cartier replica See accessories what are the to guide you anytime doubts for example so why get hold of Panerai see? fake rolex bothers everyone. Your lifestyle, outlook together with looking nicely put together provide everyone the right answers into the challenge choosing the ideal an individual's Rolex see to shop for?
  2. You can try a few different thigns and see what works best for you. and my favorite is Sqidoo is really a great site and I use it quite often.
  3. It's great to find an expert who can exiplan things so well
  4. the seventy bioliln people of earth. where are they hiding? the seventy bioliln people of earth. where are they hiding? where are they hiding? Yashar by Cabaret Voltaire. [url=]xrxswfvw[/url] [link=]itqdxdgu[/link]
  5. ome released from prison, some because of "good behavior" was commuted also been released from prison.Now, michael kors shoulder bags growing Louis Vuitton Handbags up Michael Kors sandals in kate spade bags the new balance sale Zhou Jie louis vuitton handbags is cheap nike shoes constantly prada outlet complaining Kate Spade Bags mother: Louis Vuitton Outlet Online "are kate spade outlet online you Michael Kors Outlet Handbags engage Louis Vuitton Outlet in, Louis Vuitton is that Christian Louboutin online store you let me christian louboutin outlet online eat new balance factory outlet milk, Christian Louboutin shoes online let me michael kors outlet store online sale hurt, so Louis Vuitton purses I Louis Vuitton Outlet Handbags do High Heels it."Every free run 2 heard Louis Vuitton Sunglasses of Nike Shoes On Sale these, Cheap Louis Vuitton Bags only turned his head to Phoenix Louis Vuitton Outlet Store water flowA cheap new balance crumbling louis vuitton stores tile, louis vuitton bags one Cheap Louis Vuitton Bags picked Moncler Coats up louis vuitton wallets the Nike LunarGlipse stove, kate spade new york two Louis Vuitton Bags old folding gucci handbags bed, louis vuitton outlet 2015 a Michael Kors Purses bedside Moncler Outlet Store fan gucci handbag and kate spade online sale an Michael Kors Outlet old TV Christian Louboutin Shoes sets barbour factory outlet store that Moncler Outlet Online Yang Yuqin louis vuitton store all Kate Spade New York belongings. Kate Spade New York July Christian Louboutin Outlet 31, Louis Vuitton Outlet Online the Michael Kors store reporter louis vuitton luggage arrived Louis Vuitton Purses at Louis Vuitton Sale the farm Cheap Louis Vuitton in Michael Kors outlet online sale Jingmen Louis Vuitton wallets cit
    chanel bags />st quarter, Cheap Louis Vuitton Bags caused barbour outlet store great repercussions Michael Kors Outlet Handbags in Louis Vuitton Purses the cheap nba jerseys network, and kate spade outlet output Louis Vuitton Handbags outlet to Louis Vuitton Outlet Store China christian louboutin outlet Taiwan, christian louboutin online Hong prada online outlet Kong Louis Vuitton bags and nike free run Singapore. new balance factory store April prada outlet online 2014, the cheap louis vuitton bags second quarter louis vuitton outlet of barbour outlet this food category documentary "China nike air max two Louis Vuitton Store tongue" Nike Outlet Online broadcast. LV Bags Liu Christian Louboutin Outlet is the chanel outlet online "Chinese new balance shoes outlet tongue" executive louis vuitton outlet producer.Sources mk bags outlet said LV outlet that Liu was in kate spade bags a Louis Vuitton routine Louis Vuitton purses audit gucci outlet the gucci outlet National Kate Spade Outlet Audit High Heel Shoes Office Michael Kors store since louis vuitton store 2015 the christian louboutin shoes beginning Louis Vuitton Outlet Online of Christian Louboutin shoes online December Michael Kors outlet store last chanel outlet year was Michael Kors outlet found Moncler Outlet Online to Louis vuitton outlet have Cheap Moncler Jackets financial Louis Vuitton Bags problems, gucci outlet online "the kate spade store online documentary Michael Kors Purses found Michael Kors Outlet on Louis Vuitton outlet online foreign gucci purses purchases Cheap Moncler Jackets have financial new Louis Vuitton problems," Additionally, new balance outlet online in some nba jerseys online sale high Louis Vuitton Purses ratings of Louis Vuitton Outlet stores documentary Louis Vuitton Bags 2015 production Louis Vuitton Sunglasses On, Moncler Coats "in cheap new balance shoes connection michael kors handbags with Louis Vuitton Outlet Stores the implicit interest Louis Vuitton Outlet Store related LV handbags to LV handbags implantation Louis Vuitton Outlet Handbags of wholesale nba jerseys advertising louis vuitton store exchange."A Kate Spade Bags former Louis Vuitton Outlet online employee gucci bags said Christian Louboutin Outlet Store the Louis Vuitton Sunglasses CCTV documentary
    Louis Vuitton Outlet Online /> Nike Outlet related links: [yanjing0128]
  6. cheap cialis

Post a Comment

User verification Image for user verification  

About me

Lisa Timmel,  Bevin O'Gara, and Charles Haugland share their thoughts on New Plays, Dramatury, and their experience sharing nightly conversations with the audiences that come to see our shows. Get the inside scoop of new scripts and play development!


RSS Feed

Subscribe to RSS Feed


Tag cloud

Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre: 264 Huntington Avenue, Boston MA 02115
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA: 527 Tremont Street, Boston MA 02116
Main: 264 Huntington Avenue, Boston MA 02115 | 617 266 7900 | BOX OFFICE 617 266 0800

© 2013 Huntington Theatre Company. All rights reserved | Trouble viewing this site? Please download Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.