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New from Santa Catalina Editions and NoPassport:
a play by Victor Rascon Banda
in translation by Caridad Svich

Three generations of a Mexico City family endure the absence of a son and husband who have left for the United States. The epic journey of the migrant northward too often overshadows the stories of the loved ones left behind-- this play tells their story. This translation was developed at the Lark Play Development Center in NYC and premiered at Borderlands Theater in Tucson, Arizona in February 2015.


ISBN: 978-1-329-01140-3

6 X 9 print on demand paperback

Retail price: $8.00


direct purchase link:



New from NoPassport Press March 2015:
by Aizzah Fatima
DIRTY PAKI LINGERIE is a solo play by Aizzah Fatima that shows different characters, all of whom are confronting the intersection of tradition and modernity as Muslim women. Fatima embodies the complex interplay between heritage and contemporary society. With a foreword by director Erica Gould and an afterword by dramaturge Cobina Gillitt.
ISBN: 978-1-312-95918-7
6 X 9 paperback (print on demand)

Reflections on UPON THE FRAGILE SHORE in Auburn, AL


Auburn, AL

Bree Windham

The reading in Auburn resonated with an aspect of the play that I didn't connect with right away. The reading was comprised of some friends of mine from undergrad, in the town that I love and lived in for four years while studying theatre for the first time. It was in one of my closest friend's coffee shop. Sarah (aka Mama Mocha) is a leader in town and she's only about 28. She has turned local businesses in Auburn into more earth conscious, people-minded ventures. When something tragic happens, Sarah is one of the first people to say, "How can I help?" And she's also the kind of woman who you are confident you can conquer anything when she's got your back. This is all to say that I was basically at home for this reading, with my chosen family. Because we chose a more guerrilla style reading, I think we had a unique response. We weren't in anyone's faces or anything, but rather it felt more like an invitation to hear the play. We were set up by the bar and we read the play out loud, top to bottom, with one break. we had no official audience when we began, but we had a room full of people to talk to and I think that it created one of the most fulfilling theatre experiences I've been a part of. Like the play itself, we were never accusing the audience of "not helping" or "aiding the disasters with their apathy" as some politically motivated arts pieces can do. I think that this really helped the reading. We just shared the story. It was funny to see people find a reason to get closer to us to listen better. It was like fishing. We would see them getting ready to take the bait, but we had to make sure not to make any sudden movements so that once they were hooked we could slowly reel them in. This happened SEVERAL times, including a few times with the barista himself. There was a great response from the readers as well. We stayed after and talked about the play. As you know from our previous conversations, I connect with the "why are we here" aspect of this play the strongest, but I think I walked away from it asking "what can I do?" I cannot give you a head count or audience feedback as we had a very sneaky shy audience that never signed up to come. But based on how many people made excuses to look at the tchotkes around us....we had a very attentive few. I don't know if I would necessarily recommend that style again for this play, as I think the message is too important to have people listen to parts and not the sum. But I can say that this play is enticing. I witnessed that and I think it was one of the coolest theatre moments in my life. I'm not an actor. As a lit intern I always shied away from anything that would get me on stage, even reading stage directions. However, I felt the strong sense of ownership attached with working with you for this play. I didn't realize until after I had been a reader that, "Oh yeah, I'm scared of this..." I think it's because I knew I had to voice these things in order for them to be heard and I have never found a play that I felt this passionately about. So I don't know if I could really rate this reading as a success or a failure, but I can say it was a wonderful learning opportunity and I take pride in not knowing how many lives we touched with your words that night. We took public issues and made them private pleas (unintentionally) and I would say that along those lines, it worked. 

Thank you for the honor of working with you and your staff. Thank you for letting me be a part of such a wonderful endeavor. Auburn is usually seen as the "little brother" town in comparison to Birmingham and Tuscaloosa (home of the University of Alabama). People came and asked us questions after the play and it created some really interesting dialogue with complete strangers. 

 A talk back with the audience followed the  reading event  of Upon the Fragile Shore by Caridad Svich, Saturday, November 22 at the Wells Fargo Theatre at National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, NM.  The No PassPort reading scheme was sponsored by Colectivo Teatral Nuevo Mexico, by the action of Camino Real Productions for NHCC Siembra Latino Festival.  The cast was Elias Gallegos, Michelle Otero, Diane Villegas and Mónica Sánchez, directed by Valli Marie Rivera.

The audience profile included one family with children, students from UNM University and the Peace and Justice Organization, and others.

Talk back:

A powerful engaging reading!

 General comment of audience:  All the stories -scenes are poignant and powerful and evoke the emotions that Svich provokes. The audience was attentive and absorbed, some reacting with strong emotions.

Some Audience was looking for a common thread among the scenes that made them more than the sum of their parts.

 Four things people brought up as possibilities for that common thread:

 One was the idea of connectivity- Despite the fact that these stories seemed like isolated incidents, in fact, we are all connected to these individuals, being directly or indirectly. These human made tragedies don’t just happen to the people who are immediately affected but   happen to a much broader group of people because we share the space in this world.  As Svich signifies   us humans share this fragile earth with its water, its air, and its fire which can restore or destroy.  It was recognized as Svich brought this out in some scenes.

  The second idea audience brought up was the underline historical causes of all these problems which affect our life and furfure lives in this fragile earth. Affect our environment.  One of those was the increasing population growth which puts pressure on every system the planet has including the social systems and seems to engender violence in people in very strange ways.

  And third an actor clearly stated that Human greed is the seed of the human-made tragedies.   A dynamic conversation followed about the platform of greed for power over others, which include political, cultural, and religious.

Finishing with the commonality in people to share and give love.  How love lifts us and supports us in these fragile times.

One powerful comment form an audience member:   Let us visualize the ocean without garbage. Everyone reacted with hope!

Then … WE should visualize the earth without pollution.  We should visualize the air clean and crisp.

We should visualize people sharing the land, expressing their belief and culture with respect and without violence.

 As you keep visualizing consciousness is in your mind and in the mind of the collective.  Consciousness drives action.

The invitation is to keep visualizing provoking action in sustaining a fragile earth and its people and living things.

It was an honor to be part of this reading event and reflect upon the stories and their significance

Thank you! 

Reflections from UPON THE FRAGILE SHORE at Illinois Wesleyan University

Iris Sowlat

When I was directing Upon the Fragile Shore, the line that jumped out at me was the last line, “it is.”  The play is not only a response to various human-made tragedies, but also as a call to action.  We only have one planet Earth, and when we have destroyed it through hate-infused violence towards other humans, or through mindless neglect towards the environment, we will have destroyed all that we have.  Our generation has the power to affect change and end the human-inflicted violence happening right now.  But will we?  Do we have the energy or the willpower? 

            I directed this play for Shringara Theatre Company, Illinois Wesleyan’s student-run, multicultural theatre company.  During the rehearsal process, the cast and I asked questions, had discussions, and did research relating to the events and the themes.  We also had a post-show discussion after the reading.  One statement that resonated with me from the discussion was when Natalie Howard (who played A, the one left in Port Sulphur, Louisiana) started talking about one of her character’s later monologues in which she is telling someone that she does not need to be saved.  Natalie said that her interpretation of this character’s situation was that many people think they go into destroyed parts of the world to try to “help” people, but they often fail because they believe that the “help” they are offering is superior to any other help the people in these areas can receive.  One is only really helping a group of people in a tragic situation if they are willing to listen and take the time to figure out what they really need.

            Another thing that came out of this discussion was how love was a common theme in all of the scenes.  Most of the characters were speaking about the tragedies they had experienced because these tragedies had affected someone they love.  This got us talking about how love is something that is universal throughout every country, culture, and time period, and that no matter the nature of a situation, people’s decisions are often motivated in part by the need to protect the ones they love.  

            In the days following the reading, I talked to a couple friends who didn’t stay for the discussion.  One common comment was that they were surprised at how recent the events of the play were.  Someone I know said that she didn’t know certain things were happing in Nigeria, Damascus, and Venezuela, and that this play opened her eyes to tragedies that may not be talked about on a day to day basis. 

            I think the fact that this reading made people aware of events that they weren’t aware of shows that the play is beginning to do what it is meant to do. 



by Caridad Svich
FIRE PLAYS by Caridad Svich brings together five plays - A GOOD KICK, MISSING, REMAINS, AWAY DOWN DREAMING and GENUINE BONAFIDE ARTICLE - which have never been seen before. The plays range stylistically from two 100-word plays to a poetic text to a play with songs to a family drama - all linked by images of fire, smoke and ash.
6 X 9 paperback
ISBN: 978-1-312-75734-9
Santa Catalina Editions, a NoPassport imprint

New from NoPassport Press: According to Chekhov

New from NoPassport Press December 2014
Thoughts on the Writing of UNCLE VANYA
Motti Lerner
ACCORDING TO CHEKHOV is a playful, incisive analysis of Anton Chekhov's masterful work UNCLE VANYA as interpreted by contemporary playwright Motti Lerner (in translation by Lior Yatsiv). A welcome addition to studies of Chekhov's drama and a useful book on playwriting, dramatic structure, and script analysis.
6 X 9 print on demand paperback
321 pages
ISBN: 978-1-312-75667-0
NoPassport Press,

Your Guide to Theater Education: Caridad Svich

 David DudleyCaridad Svich

December 8, 2014

In this series, David Dudley looks at the different models of theater education around the country through interviews, with the hopes that a new student will have an easier time finding the model that works for them.

Caridad Svich is a playwright who walks the walk, and talks the talk. Her plays have been read and performed throughout the world, garnering her numerous awards—including the OBIE award for lifetime achievement, in 2012. And yet she continues to educate the next generation of theater artists. Besides teaching independent workshops through Austin ScriptWorks, and NoPassport, she has also taught and lectured at Harvard, Yale, and Rutgers—to name a few.

When was NoPassport's program started?
NoPassport theatre alliance began in 2001 as a core collective of twelve playwrights, actors, and musicians who were—and still are—interested in theatrical experimentation, especially in regards to text and music. The idea was to form a playwrights’ band and sometimes make work together as a collective, and at other times share research methodologies and thoughts on theater and performance. Most of us did not live in the same city—and still don’t. So, part of the founding of NoPassport had to do with being able to share and make work across long distances.

In 2003, NoPassport’s mission shifted somewhat. I curated and organized a panel in US Latina/o playwriting and the state of the art at INTAR in NYC under my TCG/Pew Arts Residency with the theater. Part of the desire to organize the panel had to do with bringing together established and emerging Latina/o playwrights from across the country to one public conversation. As a result of it, I asked the core collective of NOPE (as we call ourselves playfully) whether we could become perhaps something else: a hub of sorts for artists interested in and making works that focused on cross-cultural exchange marked by aesthetic difference. The core collective said yes, and the version of NoPassport that exists now was born. It is an unincorporated, independent artist-based and driven platform to advocate for, publish, and produce works that are reflective of our core mission—across borders, no borders, rich in diverse exchange and multiplicity of ideas.

In 2008, I founded NoPassport Press. We have published print on-demand more than twenty titles thus far—new plays, translations, essays, and short fiction. The publication arm of NoPassport is also one of advocacy, championing new writing in print and especially work that may not otherwise be readily available and/or known by a general theater arts and performance studies readership.

What does NoPassport's Educational opportunities offer potential collaborators?
Our educational opportunities usually fall under the rubric of staging theater conferences in partnership with arts organizations and universities. We staged five conferences at the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center at CUNY Graduate Center, two at the Nuyorican Poets Café, one at ASU-Tempe, one at NYU Gallatin School 2013, and this year at LSU-Baton Rouge. The last three conferences are allarchived on HowlRound TV for anyone who wants to see. The conferences are generally organized under a theme: utopia, crossing borders, and diaspora are all topics we have addressed. Usually there is a follow-up publication component to the conferences we stage. I wish to reiterate that everything we do is artist-driven. We have no infrastructure. We exist as a loose membership of about 600 artists and scholars on a moderated list-serve. Our fiscal sponsorship is through Fractured Atlas and we subsist entirely on donations. But I hope that what NoPassport as idea (for art-making) and actuality can offer potential collaborators is a space (virtual or otherwise) to meet other artists, share ideas, and promote knowledge of existing work being made across the US and abroad, and basically offer a kind of ever-shifting mobile home for those who are interested in making work unbound by categories and labels and prescribed cultural markers.

What makes NoPassport's program different from others?
Hard to say. I think perhaps that our platform is visible but not too visible. John Jesurun once described our publication imprint as a boutique indie label that you had to seek out a bit to find. I think there is something underground and over-ground about NoPassport, which perhaps makes it different conceptually than other existing platforms in the arts.

What are the guiding principles of the program?
Solidarity. Peace. Art. Community. Being with.

Following that, what's working?
NoPassport’s most “successful” legacy thus far is its publications imprint. Although we don’t do huge print runs and so forth, over the years, I feel we have gained the respect of fellow authors and the field with the kind of work we do and how we advocate for publication and the quality of the work we do publish.

What kinds of challenges have you faced? How do you intend to approach them in future?
Funding is the key challenge. Most of the time whatever NoPassport does is still funded to a degree on a wing and a prayer, through lots of pro bono work, through my credit card sometimes. I think that in order for NoPassport to find fiscal support, I would need to take time away/off from my own art-making for at least a year or so and dedicate myself to grant writing and such. But I am a theatermaker. That’s what I do. In a way, my art-making and its ethos is closely tied to NoPassport. I am not ready to give up the art in order to wear an administrative hat exclusively. I think that’s what it would take. But I would love to figure out a way to balance both.        

What's missing, in your opinion, from the current education/ training programs available?
We are not a training program. We do not offer a degree or a certificate. I want to make that clear. We are an artists’ collective—or shall we say, an arts service organization. Whatever we offer by way of mentorship and education is through how we bridge art and academia through conferences and publications.

Who do you feel is the ideal candidate? Who are you trying to bring into the NoPassport family?
Practitioners who believe in making work and not branding it. I think there is a strong push on young artists to “brand” what they do. I think that can be potentially damaging because as soon as you brand yourself, you limit and/or narrow your possibilities.

Any changes planned for the future?
None that I can foresee at the moment. I dream of having an arts center one day devoted to the NoPassport idea.

Success stories?
Our books. Our authors. Their works are in the world. That, to me, is a measure of success.



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