On June 22nd, I was in Zaragoza for the first presentation in a series of six or more presentations as part of my winning the Internationalists Global Playwriting Prize for my play, “The Hummingbirds.”
I had left San Francisco the day earlier, and travelled by plane through Amsterdam to Madrid, arriving by train to Zaragoza just two hours before the presentation, and hurried to the theatre.
It was a magnificent evening, wonderfully directed performances from each of the actors and dancers, fascinating videography that informed and enhanced my script and a rapt audience that could not take their eyes off of the stage the whole performance. Beatriz Cabur worked tirelessly from the moment she knew she had the space (the first event in this theatre), and brought this play to Spain, as fully realized as possible.
What Beatriz did that was particularly remarkable was make the play uniquely Spanish. The play itself is for two actors of any age, race or gender, and I wrote it with an eye to my own world, not thinking the play would ever have a life outside of the United States. But Beatriz really worked to make it important to the population of Zaragoza and all of Spain, where unemployment is so high and meaningful work is not always attainable. After the play, I had many people in the audience discuss the play with me, and even though I don’t speak Spanish, they felt like many of the conversations I’ve had with audiences in America about the play. This is a testament to the skill of Beatriz as a translator and director, to take the text and move it into the Spanish vernacular for a Spanish audience.
I urge you to support Beatriz and her actors in their efforts to further the life of the play. If I can provide any further information to assist in their efforts, please feel free to contact me directly.
Garret Jon Groenveld
Playwright – “The Hummingbirds”