Press Release (ePRNews.com) - LOS ANGELES - Aug 31, 2017 - Dually inspired by Calderón’s Spanish Golden Age Drama The Physician Of His Own Honorand the 1990 documentary Paris is Burning, which detailed New York’s then-underground drag queen “ball culture,” Alvarez ups the stakes by setting his story in the heart of L.A.’s Historic Filipinotown. Echo Theater Company member Rodney Todirects the world premiere of Fixed, running Sept. 17 through Oct 22 at Atwater Village Theatre. Previews take place on Thurs., Sept. 14;Fri., Sept. 15; and Sat., Sept. 16.
Miracles Malcañang is a ladyboy masseuse who “walks” for Filipinotown’s infamous House of Malacañang. When Miracles’ forbidden love affair sparks tensions between the city’s hottest political family, two families must come together to understand the power of desire, identity, and honor
“I wanted to mine the drama and the comedy created by marginalizing the Filipino experience even more than it already is,” the playwright explains. “But, at the end of the day I’m just a hopeless romantic, and this is really just a tragic love story.”
In ball culture, houses serve as alternative families, primarily for black and Latino queer youth who “walk” for trophies and prizes in elaborately-structured ball competitions. Typically, house members adopt the name of their house as their last name. Contestants must adhere to a very specific category or theme; they are judged on criteria including the “realness” of their drag, the beauty of their clothing and their dancing ability. Houses that win a lot of trophies and gain recognition reach a rank of “legendary.” Notable houses include House of Ninja (founded by Willi Ninja), House of Aviance (founded by Mother Juan Aviance), House of Xtravaganza (founded by Hector Xtravaganza, né Hector Valle), House of Infiniti, House of Mizrahi, House of LaBeija (founded by Crystal LaBeija) and the House of Dupree (founded by Paris Dupree).
“My hope is that this play is super provocative not only for the theater community, but for the LGBTQ and Filipino communities as well,” says To. “I do think audiences are going to embrace it. I love plays that challenge people’s thinking in unexpected, unconventional ways.”
Dedicated to producing new work, the multiple award-winning Echo Theater Company was anointed “Best Bet for Ballsy Original Plays” by the LA Weekly and was a recipient of a 2016 “Kilroy Cake Drop” – one of only 13 theaters in the country to be surprised by cakes to honor the efforts they are making to produce women and trans writers. Under the leadership of founding artistic director Chris Fields, the Echo has introduced Los Angeles to playwrights such as David Lindsay-Abaire, Adam Rapp, Sarah Ruhl, Adam Bock and Miki Johnson among others. The company is also recognized for its acting ensemble; in the Los Angeles Times, theater critic Charles McNulty wrote, “Echo Theater Company, which has cultivated a community of top flight actors, would be my go-to place in Los Angeles for symbiotic ensemble acting.” KCRW’s Anthony Byrnes stated, “It’s time to start paying attention to the Echo Theater Company… The company has made bold choices and backed them up.” Last season’s production of Dry Land by Ruby Rae Spiegel received the Ovation Award for Best Production and was recently remounted at Culver City’s Kirk Douglas Theatre by Center Theatre Group as part of “Block Party.” This summer, the company enjoyed a critically acclaimed, sold-out run of Bekah Brunsetter’s The Cake. The Echo Theater Company is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary.
Fixed runs Sept. 17 through Oct.22, with performances on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sundays at 4 p.m.; and Mondays at 8 p.m. except opening night, Sunday Sept. 17, which is at 6 p.m. Three preview performances are set for Thurs., Sept. 14;Fri., Sept. 15; and Sat., Sept. 16,all at 8 p.m. Tickets are $34 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and $20 on Mondays. Preview performances are Pay-What-You-Want. Atwater Village Theatre is located at 3269 Casitas Ave in Los Angeles, CA 90039. On-site parking is free. For reservations and information, call (310) 307-3753 or go to www.EchoTheaterCompany.com.
Echo Theater Company