The San Diego REP Latinx New Play Festival, hosted by the Amigos del REP

August 30 - September 1, 2019
The Space Theatre at the Lyceum Theatre
Tickets: Advanced reserved tickets are available with suggested donations: Single Reading: $10 | 57 Chevy Single Ticket: $20 | Festival Pass: $30


About the Festival

A weekend of readings of new plays by Latinx playwrights along with a festival showcase production of 57 Chevy by Emmy Award-winning writer/comedian Cris Franco, starring Culture Clash co-founder Ric Salinas.

The San Diego REP Latinx New Play Festival is a celebration of engaging, dynamic and enlightening new plays by Latinx playwrights from across the United States. Submissions were accepted from Latinx playwrights representing an array of genres, styles and experiences highlighted by both emerging and veteran playwrights.


Festival Lineup

Friday, August 30th
7:00pm Gallery Walk
7:30pm DREAM HOU$E by Eliana Pipes
9:00pm  Opening Reception

Saturday, August 31st
12:00pm  Designer Showcase  
1:00pm To Saints and Stars by Jordan Ramirez Puckett
3:00pm Sin Fronteras Writers’ Group Sharing
4:00pm Aztec Pirates and the Insignificance of Life on Mars by David Davila
6:30pm 57 Chevy VIP Festival Pass Reception
7:00pm 57 Chevy by Cris Franco, directed by Valerie Dunlap, starring Ric Salinas
8:30pm Festival Party

Sunday, September 1st
11:00am Calaca Flaca Puppet Show
12:00pm Lily Padilla Sneak Peek
1:00pm Historical Context Panel
2:00pm Laughs in Spanish by Alexis Scheer
4:00pm Closing Toast



Media Images

Ric Salinas in 57 Chevy

Ric Salinas in 57 Chevy

Ric Salinas in 57 Chevy

Playwright Eliana Pipes

Playwright Jordan Puckett

Playwright David Davila


Play and Playwright Information



DREAM HOU$E follows two Latinx sisters on an HGTV-style show who are selling their family home, hoping to capitalize on the gentrification in their changing neighborhood. As they perform for the camera the show starts to slip into the surreal: one sister grapples with turmoil in the family's ancestral past and the other learns how much sheís willing to sacrifice for the familyís future. A play exploring the cultural cost of progress in America.

Eliana Pipes (Playwright) is a playwright, actor and the 2019 winner of the Leah Ryan Prize. She's currently a member of Echo Theater’s National Young Playwrights in Residence Program. Recent playwriting work includes: DREAM HOU$E (San Diego Rep New Latinx Plays Festival, O’Neill Theater Conference Finalist); UNTITLED (National New Play Network MFA Workshop); STAND AND WAIT (Gaffney National Playwriting Prize Winner, Bay Area Playwright’s Festival Finalist); STILETTO ENVY (Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Festival, The Fire this Time Festival). She received a BA in English from Columbia University and is currently pursuing an MFA in Playwriting from Boston University. More at


To Saints and Stars

To Saints and Stars is a full-length play about the intersection between science and faith. It follows the lifelong friendship of Sofía, a NASA astronaut, and Zoe, the wife of a Greek Orthodox priest. Sofia and Zoe have been friends since they were children and not a day has passed where they have seen or spoken to each other. Their lives and friendship are changed forever when Zoe becomes pregnant with her first child and Sofía is chosen for the first manned Mission to Mars. As the day of Sofia’s departure to Mars and Zoe’s due date approaches, their relationship becomes more strained as each woman is forced to re-evaluate what they each have prioritized in their own life and the indelible impact that they have made on each other.

Jordan Ramirez Puckett (Playwright) is a Chicana playwright and lighting designer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She often writes about being caught between two identities and our intrinsic desire for human connection, no matter how brief. She most recently participated in the 2018-2019 Playwrights Realm Scratchpad Series. Her work has also been produced and/or developed by 2Cents Theatre Group (Los Angeles, CA), Abingdon Theatre Company (New York, NY), Custom Made Theatre Co. (San Francisco, CA), Goodman Theatre (Chicago, IL), Harold Clurman Laboratory Theatre Company (New York, NY), Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, National Winter Playwrights Retreat (Creede, CO), Playwrights Center of San Francisco, San Francisco Playhouse, among others. Her plays include To Saints and Stars, A Driving Beat, Las Pajaritas, Restore, and Inevitable. She has designed lights for the world premiere productions of Bauer by Lauren Gunderson, 77% by Rinne Groff and 1 2 3 by Lila Rose Kaplan, among others. She is a graduate of Northwestern University and the former Associate Artistic Director at San Francisco Playhouse. She is currently pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Ohio University. Website:


Aztec Pirates and the Insignificance of Life on Mars

Johnny Montenegro is an ICE agent trying to put back the pieces of his life after an ugly incident in the field got him suspended from duty. While arresting a man he had already deported two years earlier, he was called a traitor to his race and he beat the accuser half to death, but he couldn’t shake the idea that had been planted within him: was he a traitor to his race? Equipped with only his commands Johnny embarks on an odyssey as he searches for the truth about his country, his culture, and his memory. However with every answer that he finds, there is something inside of him that becomes less clear. His quest to clear his conscience leads him from strip bars to courtrooms to hospitals to morgues, as he seeks the validation he needs to continue living complicity

David Davila (Playwright) is a writer, performer, director and dramaturg from South Texas; where 45 wants to build his idiotic wall. His musicals and song-cycles include MANUEL VERSUS THE STATUE OF LIBERTY (NYMF Best Musical Nomination 2015, Best Reading 2014, Princeton University 2016, Gallery Players BK 2018), PROMÈSA (Developmental Residency at Musical Theatre Factory), VOX POP (Musical Theatre Factory, 54 Below New Musicals), PYRAMID (Lincoln Center Across A Crowded Room Series 2015), #52SONGS (Beechman, The West End, The Underground, The Triad), F*CKING BEAUTIFUL (Beachman), THE MAGIC TIME MACHINE (Beachman), NASH POTATOES & DAVY (The West End), and TALES FROM HWY 281 (Intar Theatre). His full-length plays include ANIMAL HUSBANDRY (Barn Arts, Feast, PlayGround Experiment, Summer Fresh Festival), AZTEC PIRATES & THE INSIGNIFICANCE OF LIFE ON MARS (PlayGround Experiment, Feast, Summer Fresh Festival), ADAN Y JULIO Y LA FRONTERA: 2003 (Lone Star, Viva SA), MEN OF GOD (Lone Star), CREDO (ESPA) and ABUELAS OR THE POVERTY CYCLE (PlayGround Experiment). His short plays have been featured by The PlayGround Experiment, NYMadness, Primary Stages, Feast, ESPA, Second City Chicago and Lone Star Theatre. He studied vocal performance at the University of North Texas, Arts Administration at The University of Texas San Antonio, playwriting at Primary Stages’ Einhorn School of the Performing Arts and comedy writing at Second City Chicago. He is the founding Artistic Director of Lone Star Theatre Company, an avid sketch comedy and improv performer, a Rockwell Scholar, an Askins Playwright Fellow and a proud member of ASCAP. @davidodavila


57 Chevy

It’s 1964 and ten-year-old Junior is in crisis: his Old World Mexican dad is loading the 1957 Chevy and moving the entire familia from their familiar and diverse East Side neighborhood to a new tract home in the middle-class and eerily homogenous San Fernando Valley. This one-man memory play, from Emmy Award-winning writer/comedian Cris Franco, humorously explores the Baby Boomers’ generation of “double immigrants” who first moved from their homelands to the U.S. barrios in search of opportunity, then moved up into the suburbs in search of color TV and the middle-class American dream!

Cris Franco (Playwright/Co-Creator): Mexican-born, Angelino-raised Cristobal ‘Cris’ Franco has combined his bilingual/bi-cultural roots with his natural comedic bent to achieve his life’s goal: to create engaging, intelligent, humorous works that both entertain and acculturate their audience as to the unique contemporary ‘American-Latino’ experience. The result has been a multi-faceted, award-winning career as a writer, actor, producer, stand-up comedian, talk-show host, TV journalist and openly gay activist who has broken down barriers and built cultural bridges by way of communication through comedy. Cris’s career spanning thirty-plus years includes multiple acting and writing credits for both stage and screen, including works important in the history of Latino television—writer for the first Chicano sitcom, “A.K.A. Pablo”; Head of Comedy for first the bilingual talk show, “El Show de Paul Rodriguez”; cast member of the original company of ZOOT SUIT by Luis Valdez and El Teatro Campesino. Cris has been a part of many award-winning projects—writer/performer for the Emmy Award-winning PBS series, ‘Square One Television’ and writer for the Alma Award-winning children’s series, ‘Puzzle Place’. He has garnered awards for his ten years of work on PBS, especially for his critically acclaimed talk show, ‘The Cris Franco Show.’ In 2011, for his comprehensive and enduring work in documenting the contemporary American Latino experience in “a bold, inventive and truthful manner,” his alma mater, California State University Northridge, requested that Cris donate his papers and original show tapes to their media archives. While compiling, reviewing and cataloguing these documents, Cris began reflecting on his life’s journey and started penning his play 57 CHEVY.

Valerie Dunlap (Director/Co-Creator): Valerie’s academic credits include faculty positions in the Drama Departments of San Diego State University and California State University Northridge. As a composer she’s worked with Bette Midler and Marc Shaiman; choreographed “Brooklyn South” (CBS Network); music directed for PBS’s multi-Emmy Award winning “The Cris Franco Show.” She created the musical teen revue, OUR TIME, based on the songs of Stephen Sondheim; was lyricist, co-composer and co-librettist for the ever-popular, rollicking wild west musical THE SILVER SPITTOON SALOON. Valerie is also the sole creator of ECHO/RE-ECHO, an acapella musical that received special recognition at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.

Ric Salinas (Actor) is an original member of the critically acclaimed performance troupe, Culture Clash—a group who has forged a unique role on the American stage. As a theatre artist, writer, social commentator and activist, Ric and his co-creators, Richard Montoya and Herbert Siquenza, have written over a dozen plays and performed over 5, 000 shows nationwide. The trio made television history twice: being the first Latino comedy troupe to have a nationally broadcast sketch TV show (Fox TV), and to have their serio-comedy historical anthology, Bowl of Beings, presented on PBS’s Great Performances series. Film and TV credits include: Encino Man, Hero, Mi Vida Loca, Larry Crowne, and “In Living Color.” For the past two years Ric has been starring in a critically successful national tour of Placas: The Most Dangerous Tattoo. Ric directs for Teatro Zinzanni, a Cirque du Soleil-type show and is proud to have three published plays: Life, Death and Revolutionary Comedy; Culture Clash in AmeriCCa; and Oh, Wild West: The California Plays. Ric—who graduated with two B.A.s from San Francisco State University—is proud to have taught the course, “Theatre as Pedagogy in Education” at UCLA.


Laughs in Spanish

It’s Art Basel and the stakes are high for the gallery Mariana runs in the Wynwood Arts District in Miami. And when Mariana’s movie-star mother tries to help out things get muy complicado. Laughs in Spanish is a fast paced, cafecíto-induced comedy about art and success—and mothers and daughters—and learning to love the people we can’t change.

Alexis Scheer (Playwright) is a multi hyphenate theatre artist based in Boston. She writes plays that are brazenly millennial and fiercely feminist, through a Latinx lens. The Improper Bostonian named her Rising Theater Star in the 2018 Boston's Best Issue. Alexis is earning her MFA in Playwriting at Boston University, holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from The Boston Conservatory and is a proud graduate of New World School of the Arts. This season she joins the Huntington Theatre Company as the Producing/Casting Apprentice. Alexis also moonlights as the Producing Artistic Director of the award-winning fringe company, Off the Grid Theatre.


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