Tori and Mabelle talk with José Casas about his path into TYA via law and social justice; his book, “Palabras del Cielo: An Exploration of Latina/o Theatre for Young Audiences”; accomplices versus allies; representation; publishing new playwrights; and changing systems actively rather than passively. Other topics include building audiences starting with youth, as well as his upcoming projects: a second volume of Palabras, an anthology on African American TYA, and a superhero book connected to 18 brand-new BIPOC theatrical projections nationwide.
Writing prompt (courtesy of José Casas)
José leads this exercise in the first two weeks of his Intro to Playwriting classes. Think of the word you love the most and write a play with that word in mind. Then, think of the word you hate the most and write a play about that. You don’t have to use the words in the plays, but write two short plays inspired by your favorite word and your least favorite word.
Connect with José: brownplaywright.com
Watch “Flint” by José Casas (2019) – University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance: https://brownplaywright.com/Flint
José Casas is a playwright and Assistant Professor who heads the Playwriting Minor in the Department of Theatre & Drama at the University of Michigan. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild as well as a Board Member of Children’s Theatre Foundation of America. He has a BA in Theatre Arts from the University of California, Santa Barbara, a
MA in Theatre Arts from California State University, Los Angeles, and a MFA in Playwriting from Arizona State. His plays include la rosa grows beyond the wall, all brown all chingon, aDoBe, a million whispers all at once, the vine, la ofrenda and somebody’s children and Flint. His work has been included in a number of anthologies such as The Bully Plays, Ethnodrama: An Anthology of Reality Theatre, and Theatre for Youth II: More Plays With Mature Themes. His published work includes la ofrenda, 14, somebody’s children, and Palabras del Cielo: An Exploration of Latina/o Theatre for Young Audiences which was awarded the American Alliance of Theatre and Education’s Distinguished Book Award. His plays, la ofrenda and somebody’s children were awarded both the Bonderman National Playwriting Award and the American Alliance of Theatre and Education’s Distinguished Play Award.
Purchase “Palabras del Cielo: An Exploration of Latina/o Theatre for Young Audiences”: https://www.dramaticpublishing.com/palabras-del-cielo
Join us at the 2022 Inge Festival!: https://ingecenter.org/festival