Copresented with Chicago Humanities Festival
A passionate performance fueled by irony and humor. . . with an intoxicating text you want to drink line by line.
When Spanish royalty imprisoned Christopher Columbus for abusing his power in the Indies, the explorer begged an audience with Queen Isabella to explain himself and plead for absolution.
La Reunión, an intense single-act play, revisits this historic event to imagine a conversation between Columbus and Isabella, in the hour before the queen’s death in 1504. This steely vivisection of history and personal responsibilities takes place in the privacy of the queen’s chambers. In a probing dialogue, they duel about the power of the church and the oligarchy, class struggle, and the vindication of indigenous people, all the while accusing each other of greed and false morality. Stripped of props and design, the bare stage focuses the audience’s attention on two people whose actions changed the world—with only a massive round table, and their heated words, between them.
Playwright, director, and actor Trinidad González wrote La Reunión during the peak of the 2012 mass student protests in Chile. She cites these events as inspirational armor for writing a contemporary work about seemingly archaic history, to take stock of what has happened in the Americas since that time.
The presentation at MCA Stage serves as the North American premiere of La Reunión.
The performance is in Spanish with English subtitles.
Running time: 85 minutes, no intermission