• 2020-2021 Season,  One Acts by Maria Irene Fornes

    Study Guide for Manual for a Desperate Crossing and Letters from Cuba

    by Laynie Calderwood and Angela Moser, dramaturgs If you’d like to spend a little more time with the study guide for this production, we’re providing a link here. This is the complete study guide, as it is found within the program for our production. MFDC Study Guide Also, below you will find the attributions for the photographs and artwork included in the study guide, and links to other works referenced. Thanks for reading! Works Referenced Robinson, Marc. The theater of Maria Irene Fornés. The John Hopkins University Press, 1999. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, “The Danger of a Single Story.” TEDTalks 2009. Images Title Page (and background image) Abstract New York Manhattan…

  • 2020-2021 Season,  One Acts by Maria Irene Fornes

    Experiencias Vividas

    by Laynie Calderwood, dramaturg As a white American, I grew up understanding a single story of immigration. I’ve always been told people come to America for a better life, to pursue their “American Dream.” I’ve always been taught that every immigrant gains more by coming here than what they leave behind.  In my dramaturgical process, I found that while many immigrants did experience some components of the single story I had been taught all my life, all of their processes were more complex and layered than I originally had assumed. These complexities challenged me; they made me rethink and question a lot of what I felt like I had known. …

  • 2020-2021 Season,  One Acts by Maria Irene Fornes

    The Avant-Garde Theatre of Maria Irene Fornés

    by Angela Moser, dramaturg Maria Irene Fornés never had a single one of her works have an opening night on Broadway. She has never been a mainstream author, although she is revered as one of the most prolific and creative artists in the theater world. Something about her work has always been seen as too difficult for mainstream audiences, or too avant-garde to understand. The word “avant-garde” comes from the French language, and it refers to innovative approaches to art-making, art that pushes the boundaries of creativity. Fornés moved forward with her work to reflect an originality of vision. She used her bicultural identity to lead in many aspects of…

  • 2020-2021 Season,  One Acts by Maria Irene Fornes

    Why Fornés, Why Now?

    by Laynie Calderwood, dramaturg In response to the most recent calls for wider civil change, BYU Theatre is actively working to better fulfill the prophet’s invitation to “abandon all attitudes and actions of prejudice.” The first step is diversifying the stories that we tell on stage; Letters from Cuba and Manual for a Desperate Crossing quickly emerged as a vital and important place to begin. About her inspiration for this production, director Kris Peterson says, “As a Latina faculty member, I am interested in diversifying the representation in our productions, so I began reading work by Latinx playwrights. María Irene Fornés’ one-acts spoke to me and her experimental staging seemed…