By: Monica Rodriguez
Our next spotlight for this year’s Austin Latino New Play Festival (ALNPF) is Caroline Dobson Chavez. She is the playwright for “Quincea-What?,” playing Friday, May 17, at 8 p.m. at The Long Center Rollins Theatre.
Inspired by a dream, Chavez wrote “Quincea-What?!” to inspire culture connections.
“The title,”Quincea-What?”, is presented in the form of a question, because I am hoping this play causes the audience to question their own viewpoints about various topics discussed throughout the play,” said Chavez. “I hope this play starts a conversation about real communication across cultures.”
Throughout “Quincea-What?,” audiences will be introduced to relatable Hispanic characters.
“My favorite character is Aunt Lupe,” said Chavez. “She represents the Hispanic female elder of the household and is emotionally expressive. I would love to have an Aunt Lupe figure in my life, because I know she would give me good solid advice based on a lifetime’s experience.”
Chavez studied Spanish at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in San Antonio, where she learned about the Quinceañera experience.
“I actually have never been to a Quinceañera, but I would love to be invited some time,” said Chavez. “I think celebrating the transition from being a girl to being a young woman is significant across cultures, and I believe in celebrating women of all ages.”
During her writing process, Chavez learned three things as a playwright.
“I learned from this experience that play writing is not easy, writing a play is very different from writing a book, and the valuable roles of director and dramaturg versus playwright,” said Chavez.”I loved this entire experience!”
Loving her playwriting experience, Chavez believes future playwrights should pursue life’s opportunities.
“Follow your dreams because they can, in fact, turn into reality,” said Chavez.