NI MI MADRE

NEW YORK TIMES

"Even though only four of the shows in this year’s festival were written by people of color, Mr. Davenport promised that next year “we won’t only be encouraging new voices to submit, we’ll be chasing them down.” We keep our fingers crossed that they will be as vibrant as Arturo Luís Soria, the queer artist who plays a version of his larger-than-life Brazilian mother in the music-infused “Ni Mi Madre.” In trying to understand their troubled history, he pays her the ultimate tribute: his rich portrayal of the woman who bore him overshadows scenes in which he plays himself."

-Jose Solís

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NEW HAVEN REVIEW 

"Arturo Soria is a born performer, and in Ni Mi Madre he performs the person from whom he was born. It’s a striking symbiosis indeed, and makes for a wonderfully vibrant portrayal of an inseparable duo."

-Donald Brown

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60 mins: 1 M or F

Inspirited with the tradition of Umbanda ritual, the music of Gloria Estefan, Cher, and Maria Bethânia, NI MI MADRE invites the audience into the tumultuous relationship between Bete (a larger-than-life Brazilian woman who swears that if it weren’t for Madonna, Meryl Streep, and Angelina Jolie she would have been the “It” thing) and her queer son. As she grapples with the secrets that tear her and her son apart, the unbidden memories of her estranged mother, and the lineage that binds them all together she unveils to us, her confidants, her judges, her audience, the downfalls of American parenting. NI MI MADRE delves deep into the makings of an immigrant family. It explores the intersection between queerness and Latinidad; examines gender, sexuality, family, citizenship, transculturation, identity; and lays bare the secrets, memories, fears, and celebrations of being an immigrant and first-generation American.      

Awards:

[2015] Winner of the Luso-American Scholarship, DisQuiet International Literary Program, Lisbon, Portugal

Productions: 

[2017] Yale Cabaret at Yale School of Drama, New Haven, CT

[2013] One-night special event at Barrow Street Theatre, NY, NY

[2011] Workshop with Solo Jams at MPAACT Theatre, Chicago, IL

Photos by Jeffrey Mosier Photography