Chicago, IL – The Jeff Awards meeting on Monday, February 18, 2019 at the Greenhouse Theater will include a panel discussion on Latinx Theatre. This is a rescheduled panel from Jan. 28. Latinx groups are dedicated to education, advocacy and community among Latinx performers. In Chicago, one of the most visible of these groups is ALTA (The Alliance of Latinx Theater Artists of Chicago).
The public is invited, and attendance is free. Please email reservation requests to [email protected]. Seating is limited.
The program will begin at 7:30 PM at the Greenhouse, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL and will last about one hour. The regular Jeff Awards meeting for members will follow the panel discussion after a short break.
The panel (scheduled to appear) for the discussion:
Tony Bruno (UrbanTheater Company Manager)
Cruz Gonzalez-Cadel (Actress)
Tamika Lechee’ Morales (Actress)
Melanie Queponds (Director)
Tony Bruno is a Chicago native, Company Manager for UrbanTheater Company, and a part of the Latinx Theater Commons steering committee. He is a Producer, Sound Designer and Production manager that has worked with Chicago Dramatist, Adventure Stage, New Colony, Collectivo El Poso, Chicago Latino Theater Alliance, 48 hour Film Festival, and Dreamworks Films.
Cruz Gonzalez-Cadel is an award winning Argentine actor, singer and dancer. Born and raised in Buenos Aires, she strives to bring the riches of her experience and culture to her work in Theatre, TV and Film. A SAG-AFTRA actor, she has a degree in acting from The Universidad del Salvador, is a graduate of the iO Theatre Improv program and speaks fluent Spanish, English and French. Her Chicago credits include work with Steep Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Court Theatre, The Hypocrites and Teatro Vista, where she is an Ensemble Member. She was featured as one of the Chicago Tribune’s 10 Hot New Faces of Chicago Theatre’ in 2017 and won a Jeff Award for Performance in a Principal Role in a Play for her portrayal of Lela in Lela & Co. Her resumé is available at www.cruzgonzalezcadel.com.
Tamika Lechee´ Morales is a spicy, raw and passionate Nuyorican whose talents are as broad and captivating as her fiery personality. She began her acting career well over a decade ago.Her talent on stage has captured audiences and established her as a known figure in Chicago’s theater scene where she serves as an ensemble member at Halcyon Theatre and UrbanTheater Company. Tamika has been fortunate to play several leading roles by inspiring Latinx playwrights such as María Irene Fornés, Carmen Rivera, Migdalia Cruz, Charise Castro Smith, Sabina Berman and more. Her passion for humanity draws her to the stage as an actress and a playwright to tell stories that impact audiences’ hearts and minds. Tamika strongly believes theater should bring cultural awareness, expose struggles and raise consciousness. Her website is www.tamikamorales.com.
Melanie Queponds is a former producer and director of the UCR Latinx Play Project, a student ensemble dedicated to creating culturally responsive work for the community surrounding the University of California, Riverside. She earned her BA in Theatre and English at UCR in 2017. At The Theatre School, Melanie has directed 26 Miles by Quiara Alegría Hudes and Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. She will be directing Fur by Migdalia Cruz next quarter.
As part of its continuing theatre education program for Jeff members and the public, the Jeff Awards hosts panel discussions on excellence in judging categories. Following the moderated discussion, a question and answer period will take place. The panel discussions are recorded and made available on the Jeff website www.jeffawards.org and on YouTube. Videos of previous panel discussions also are available on the website and on YouTube.
The Jeff Awards has been honoring outstanding theatre artists annually since it was established in 1968. With up to 55 members representing a wide variety of backgrounds in theatre (including producers, directors, actors, playwrights, designers, professors of theatre, entertainment lawyers and agents and theatre lovers), the Jeff Awards is committed to celebrating the vitality of Chicago area theatre by recognizing excellence through its recommendations, awards and honors. Opening night judges include not only Jeff members but also the team of Arts and Technical theatre volunteers (the “A/T Team”) which is comprised of artistic directors, producers, directors from major Chicago theatres, actors and designers. The Jeff Awards fosters the artistic growth of area theatres and theatre artists and promotes educational opportunities, audience appreciation and civic pride in the achievements of the theatre community. Each year, the Jeff Awards judges 300 theatrical productions and host two awards ceremonies. Originally chartered to recognize only Equity productions, the Jeff Awards established the Non-Equity Wing in 1973 to celebrate outstanding achievement in non-union theatre.