A Brave Woman in Mexico - Casting Director and Outreach Coordinator

Duke University, Theater Previews New Works Lab. By Matthew Paul Olmos. Director Jonathan Cullen. November 2 & 3, 2012. East Duke 209.

 Cast, director, and playwright of A Brave New Woman in New Mexico

Cast, director, and playwright of A Brave New Woman in New Mexico

A Brave Woman in Mexico is part one of Olmos’ trilogy So Go the Ghosts of Mexico. The playwright was in residence at Duke for a week workshopping a staged reading of the script with students and visiting artists. The final script had its premiere at LaMama, ETC. in April 2013.

According to Olmos, “When twenty-two-year-old Mari volunteers to replace the recently beheaded Chief of Police, she sets off a chain reaction that starts with her husband, moves on to the narcos, and then fans out to the rest of the people, living and the dead, in the country of Mexico. The play was inspired by true events.”

Olmos has been selected by Sam Shepard as the inaugural recipient of the La MaMa ETC’s Ellen Stewart Emerging Playwright Award, and was awarded the 2012 Princess Grace Award in Playwriting, which includes a residency at New Dramatists.

There was a post-show discussion with the playwright and cast on Friday, November 2 moderated by Jonathan Cullen. On Saturday, November 3, I moderated a pre-show panel, “Ghosts, Borders & Brave Women,” co-sponsored by Duke University’s Program in Latino/a Studies in the Global South in conjunction with their final reception for the Days of the DeadFrom Mexican Roots to Present-Day Practice in the United States exhibit in the Fredric Jameson Gallery.

Panelists for “Ghosts, Borders, and Brave Women”

Matthew Paul Olmos.

China Medel. A sixth year PhD Candidate in Literature and Women’s Studies Certificate student at Duke University, she graduated from Portland State University in 2006 with a BA in English and Film Studies. China works on visual media studies of the US-Mexico border and is teaching a class in Spring 2013 titled, “Contemporary Art, Literature, and Media of the US-Mexico Border.” She is also helping organize the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics’ first graduate student Convergence being held at Duke Nov 9-11, 2012.

Jocelyn Olcott. An associate Professor of History and Women’s Studies at Duke University, she is the author of Revolutionary Women in Postrevolutionary Mexico(Duke University Press, 2005) and co-editor with Mary Kay Vaughan and Gabriela Cano of Sex in Revolution: Gender, Politics, and Power in Modern Mexico (Duke University Press, 2006; in translation with Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2009). Professor Olcott is currently working on two book projects: “The Greatest Consciousness-Raising Event in History: International Women’s Year and the Challenge of Transnational Feminism” (under contract with Oxford University Press) and “Sing What the People Sing: Concha Michel and the Politics of Mexican Maternalism.:

Jenny Snead Williams. The Executive Director of the Program in Latino/a Studies in the Global South at Duke, Jenny is the co-curator of (and a featured photographer in) the “Days of the Dead: From Mexican Roots to Present-Day Practice in the United States” exhibit. Her background is in Spanish, Sociology, and Latin American Studies. She earned her MS in Sociology, with a graduate minor in Anthropology at NCSU and a thesis on Latino immigration to North Carolina. At Duke she has worked both at the Center for Latin American & Caribbean Studies and the Latino/a Studies Program for over 10 years.