GALA review: Mariela in the Desert / Mariela en el desierto

Women who behave rarely make great artists. Local D.C. playwright Karen Zacarías and a well-polished GALA Hispanic Theatre cast and technical team present us with a strange, tragic-comic masterpiece that introduces us to outsiders living in the desert, where characters are up against vast open spaces and nothingness. This is a complex play about the sacrifice it takes not only to become an artist but also to remain one.

Mariela in the Desert has gone through several rewrites and the results are stunning. This mesmerizing production that illuminates Zacarías’ intense, imagistic language builds slowly through clearly defined flashbacks. From a calm surface, it erupts like an earthquake at the end.   Director Abel López’ sensitive directing enriches Zacarías’ language with memorable stage images.

Roberto Colmenares as José and Luz Nicolás as Mariela. Photo courtesy of GALA Hispanic Theatre.

Roberto Colmenares as José and Luz Nicolás as

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