Hombres Verdados: Part 1
Alexis Elisa Macedo
Anything can happen before Mama calls for dinner. Until then, the masked “EL NIÑO RÁPIDO” takes to the ring before a crowd of adoring fans! As a fatal blow smacks our tearful little luchador out of his fantasy, a voice from beyond reminds him that hombres verdaderos, no lloran.
Alexis Elisa Macedo is a poet, playwright, director, and activist from California’s sunny Central Valley. As a phenomenally unapologetic Chicana, Macedo’s work uplifts and empowers the silenced and marginalized voices of BIPOC and women of all kinds. She’s a National Theatre Institute Alum (Advanced Playwright ‘20), has a BA in Theatre Arts – Acting Emphasis from Fresno State (‘21), and is pursuing her certification in Chicanx/Latinx Studies in Secondary Schooling. Macedo is a Miranda Family Fellow, the recipient of KCACTF/LORT ASPIRE Leadership Fellows Meritorious Achievement, and grants from The Bushwick Starr and The League of Women Voters of Fresno. Macedo’s originals such as, I Don’t Speak Spanish, have been performed for SolFest – Latinx Theatre Festival, Matchbox Theatre Co., Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center, and Lime Art’s Productions featured her play Red Hood(ie) in their 20By20 Fringe. Macedo is currently playing Frida in Teatro Espejo’s production of “Frida.”
A BIT ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
1. When did you start writing plays? If you had a moment where you realized you wanted to write, what was it?
I started writing plays out of impatience. I was a young actor tired of waiting for a Brown, strong, female lead roles that didn’t exist, then a director looking for a local company that would produce a show celebrating and centering BIPOC, then a playwright who decided if I’m not going to be given a seat at their table, I’d build my own.
2. How did you come to write your OOB play? Was there a particular inspiration behind its creation? How has it developed?
This play was born during my time at the National Theatre Institute under the assignment to create “a ghost in a sacred place.” The garage in my childhood home is sacred to me, decorated with my dad’s collection of neon beer signs and home to many heart-to-hearts. He taught me how to punch on the bag he hung in the corner and accompanied by his stereo; we’ve shuffled a cumbia on the cement. Sometimes, my grandpa joins my dad in the garage for a beer, and if I’m lucky, I can pull up a lawn chair beside them. Sisters outnumbered my Dad and Grandpa during their childhoods, and I think that’s influenced how they’ve helped raise strong and independent daughters and granddaughters. It’s their unashamed expression of love for their families and emotion that Chicano men are traditionally taught to mask. They, fortunately, were not taught toxic machismo; instead, they taught us how to avoid it. Their kind and good hearts were inspirations for Antonio’s vulnerability and joy and opposites for Papá’s unwavering tough love. After the setting of this play came to be, I discovered that the garage, separated from the house itself but still under the roof of toxic machismo, is a place where a boy’s vulnerability can run free for a moment, then must be corralled, calmed, swallowed to give you the strength to reenter the house.
3. What are 5 words that describe who you are as a playwright?
Poetic. Magical. Reflective. Honest. Detailed.
4. What/who are some of the major influences on your writing?
My intersectional makeup is essential to how I write. My family, life experiences, and culture have shaped the way I view the world and therefore relay it on the page. As magical and dramatic as they are, my plays are rooted in a personal truth for me in some way. I write what’s missing, vocalize what’s been silenced, and kick down doors that were closed in my face.
5. What’s one fact someone would never guess about you?
I suck at decorating my living spaces. My apartment has no color scheme, aesthetic, nada! My walls and shelves are covered in random trinkets, handwritten notes, plants, inside jokes, quotes with a swear word or two, clocks that don’t work, a pinata…but creating a vivid, cohesive world on the page? That’s a no-brainer. It’s unintentionally become a thing of mine to begin each of my plays with a creation-of-the-world paragraph that the first character onstage must live in for a few moments before speaking.
6. What are some of your favorite plays?
Albion, The Siblings Play, The Motherf*cker with the Hat, Lydia, What the Constitution Means to Me, She Kills Monsters.
7. Any new projects you’re working on or shameless plugs?
My eyebrows and I are currently playing Frida in Teatro Espejo’s production of “Frida,” premiering virtually June 11-20, 2021. Writing-wise, I’m working on my first full-length play with a female/Chicanx led cast, poetry, music…and maybe a book if I have time.