Octavio Solis' "Lydia" at The Mark Taper Forum
Playwright Octavio Solis has become an overnight sensation, and it took only 25 years. Long respected in theater and Latino arts circles, the writer is having breakthrough success with his play "Lydia."
Set in El Paso in the 1970s, "Lydia" portrays the saga of the Flores family, whose teenage daughter, Ceci, has been disabled in a horrific accident. Into this household of troubled souls and buried secrets enters an undocumented caretaker who shares a mysterious connection with Ceci.
With recent productions at Denver Center Theatre Company, Yale Repertory Theatre and Marin Theatre Company, the drama opens Wednesday at the Mark Taper Forum, directed by Juliette Carrillo. "Lydia" has also been submitted for consideration for the Pulitzer Prize and is a finalist for the 2009 Harold and Mimi Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award. "Lydia" is a breakthrough and a departure for Solis, known for poetic, lyrical language in plays typically not tied to any one setting. The heightened language is still present in "Lydia" but so too is realism.
"It's my first real true family play inside a house," the writer says during a recent visit from his Bay Area home. "This is one where everything is happening inside four walls and within a compressed period of time, often real time. I've written the kind of play that I said I would never write.
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