La MaMa Blogs: 6 Questions: Karina Casiano

Monday, February 3, 2014

6 Questions: Karina Casiano

Karina Casiano is bring her solo play Womankind, featuring dance, acrobatics and original songs, to the Club at La MaMa February 28th - March 2nd. We asked Karina 6 Questions about the show and about herself: 

1. What was the initial inspiration for WOMANKIND?
"WOMANKIND" is the play I've been wanting to do all my life. I always wanted to create a full play about sexism and gender construction, but it is a very personal and intense topic for me, so I put it off. I also felt that the general audience would not be receptive, as feminism was regarded as obsolete for decades. Then, finally, the overtly misogynistic comments made by politicians on the Right --as well as several other events around the world-- brought the attention back to this deep-seated, destructive sexual hierarchy that we have come to consider normal. All this has made the public realize that sexism is still a crippling human rights issue in this country and around the world. After seeing the public debate that ensued, I knew that the time was ripe for this play.

2. What is the most challenging element in creating and performing a one-woman-play?
Money, as always. A solo show only means that you are performing alone on stage. There are many, many people and resources involved. You're also carrying all the responsibility for the production on your shoulders, and that can be daunting and crushingly lonely at times, especially with limited or no funding.

So, yeah, it all comes down to the money.

3. How do dance, acrobatics & original music fit into the show

"WOMANKIND" includes 9 original songs, 8 of them with music composed by guitarist and singer Bryan Wade. It also contains physical theater, aerial dance and pole dancing.

To me, "acting" inherently includes movement and sound. I don't really separate one from the others. My work generally includes dance and music in some way, regardless of the style of the play.

Because "WOMANKIND" deals with the role women are assigned in our society, I wanted to highlight how the body responds to and is shaped by these forces. I included aerial and pole dances, contortion and other body languages to illustrate this in a beautiful, artistic way.

4. When did you know that you wanted a career in the arts?
I knew that I wanted to be an actress when I was 10 years old when I read an interview with an actor who played Spiderman on TV. He said that he chose to be an actor because he loved that he could be the cop, the robber, the priest, the superhero --anything and everything,-- through his characters. That very day, I knew that was what I wanted to do. My father is a singer, too, so I was exposed to the life of an artist from a young age, and I think that made me tend towards a non-conventional lifestyle.

5. Name someone or something that inspires you.

The combination of discipline, boldness and talent inspires me.

6. What does working at La MaMa mean to you?
This is the second time I will produce my work at La MaMa, and I feel that it is a natural match for the type of theater I like to do. They are admired everywhere for taking risks, breaking barriers and setting trends, as well as standing up for the arts and for social justice, and I am grateful to be welcomed here and be part of that history and mission.


By Karina Casiano

February 28 – March 2, 2014

On the last day of her life, a bitter, vengeful old lady looks back at the way that being a woman has shaped her life.
A solo play by Karina Casiano with dance, acrobatics and original songs, with music by Bryan Wade.

Tickets: $18 Adults; $13 Students/Seniors; a limited number of $10 tickets are available to everyone, IN ADVANCE for every performance as part of La MaMa's 10 @ $10 ticketing initiative. Not available day of show.

For Tickets and Info: Click Here

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