Marfa Live Arts’ Winter Showcase Theater takes place Thursday night at Planet Marfa

Marfa Live Arts’ 2023 Winning Marfa Junior High students, who will have their monologues brought to life by adult Marfa actors Thursday at Planet Marfa. From left to right: Asael Zubia, Abelardo Marquez, Mateo Meza, Gael Chavira, Alberto Salgado, Lily Aguero, Aubrey Tarr, Itzel Urritia, Dariela Munoz, Giselle Torres. Photo by Tina Rivera.

MARFA — In January, Marfa Junior High students participated in the seventh annual Marfa Live Arts Playwriting Preparatory Program. Ten of these winning monologues will be presented and brought to life the evening of Thursday, February 2, by Marfa actors Gabriel Chavarría, Fátima Anaza, Amanda Bloom, Annette Mendoza, Lily Aguero and Yoseff Ben Yehuda at the Winter Theater Showcase hosted at Planet Marfa at 5 p.m. 

The students who will receive prizes and have their pieces performed are: Abelardo Marquez “The Story of Ice Cream”; Alberto Salgado “I Am The Sun”; Lily Aguero “When I Was Three”; Aubrey Tarr “Never Enough”; Gael Chavira “Without the Stain of the World”; Giselle Torres “Cupcake”; Itzel Jaime “Magic Squirrel”; Dariela Munoz”Dear Old Me”; Asael Zubia “If You Believe”; and Mateo Meza “Fallen Into the Dirt.”

Marfa Live Arts arts educator Rachael Tate shares: “Following a week in the classroom playing, exploring and excavating our inner monologues, the students and I are so excited to present a showcase of our time together. While not every piece could be selected for performance, I was incredibly impressed with the articulation of thought and expression in each of the students’ writing. We took a series of journeys through mental exploration to reach a place of inner knowing to write from; focusing on the things we know to be true about ourselves and what we believe. Each monologue was sprung from the idea of ‘discovery,’ or an ‘Aha!’ moment.” 

Tate continues: “From the perspectives of unique characters, we asked, what does this character, and we as writers, really need to say? Using the format of a monologue to communicate from a position of need (I need you to hear) into a place of desire (I want you to know). It’s the telling of a moment so pure and intense that we cannot help but share what we feel, what we are and who we are in that exact moment. The result of that question came through in so many creative and deeply moving articulations which will be performed by local actors in a night of communal storytelling. Come play with us!”

One student described what he liked best about the workshop: “To be honest there was a lot that really let me express myself in these pieces of writing. It let me talk about different things that I enjoy and things that I cherish with great pleasure. And finally, the awareness and positivity that I gained is immeasurable.”

The Playwriting Prep Program teaches students how to write key components of a play in preparation for the high school Playwriting Program taught by Marfa Live Arts each spring. In its twelfth year, the annual high school program which will host guest playwright Raul Garza, March 6-10, has resulted in over 1,150 one-act plays written by Marfa students. 

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