updates

In 2015 i reevaluated my life and came to the conclusion that it was time for me to stop treating my passion as a "hobby" and my job as a passion. I also came to the conclusion that i needed a conservatory style training in acting because acting workshops on my days off stopped doing it for me; I needed to immerse myself in the craft.

So, i kissed my health insurance and salaried job good-bye, and after URTA's, accepted an offer to train in the Professional Actors Training Program that was part of the MFA in Theater from the University of South Carolina, then ran by professors: Steve Pearson, Stan Brown, and Robyn Hunt.

These updates are both a way for me to keep track of my artistic growth, and a space to share it with those of you who care to know.

2021

(SUPER) GRAD REVUE 3 Pre-Shows at Second City's Blackout Cabaret Mondays Dec 6. 13. 20 at 8:30 pm << click for $10 tickets

(12/01/2021)


PUSHY IMPROV ensemble at THE UMBRELLA: performing every Thursday night at 10:00 pm at the Annoyance Theatre & Bar <<click for $14 tickets

(09/22/2021)


¿Y tu abuela, Where is she? Part 1: Cuando me muera, opens on October 11, 2021 as part of DESTINOS: 4th CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL LATINO THEATER FESTIVAL, and produced by Visión Latino Theatre.

I feel blessed to be playing the role of ADALINA in this beautiful play written by Nelson Diaz-Marcano, directed by Xavier M Custodio, about an interracial Puerto Rican couple is accepted into a program that allows them to modify the genes of their unborn child. Excitement over their child's prospective life helps them forget the issues plaguing their relationship, until they get stuck on a question: what color skin should the child have? As they navigate the answer, larger problems are exposed and divine intervention may be needed for the whole family to survive. (09/02/2021)


Grad Revue 2 Pre-Shows at Second City’s Blackout Cabaret will take place Sundays 10/10, 10/17, 10/24 @ 8:30pm CT

As level 5 of the Conservatory Program (now called Grade Revue 2) comes to its near conclusion, my class ensemble will be putting up and opening to audiences the sketches and musicals we’ve written from improvisation. (01/2021 - Presently ongoing)


Performed at the Annoyance Theatre & Bar’s (by invitation) Talent Showcase

This showcase was organized at the request of showbiz producers for their yearly talent scouting. This nerve-wracking and exhilarating experience where I was given literally one day and a half to come up with 4 minutes of comedic material that included at least 3 impressions, gave me a taste for the “on the fly” comedic writing and sketch writing experience I am training for. I was humbled by the presence of the amazing, experienced artists that were a part of this showcase. I have much to aspire to! (08/13/2021)


SNL Audition Tape Submission

As an SNL scholarship recipient, I was given the opportunity to put together 5 minutes of comedy -- including 3 impressions -- and send it to SNL producers via the Second City. Tape submissions for SNL are by invitation only, and although I am not expected to be hired from this tape since producers are interested in scholarship recipients completing Second City Conservatory Program, it was still a huge learning experience to have 5 days to work on putting together basically a 5 minute solo show. It was a lot of fun, and my parents helped me with costumes! (07/2021)

You can watch the tape I submitted to SNL by clicking on this link: https://youtu.be/liVbpxFBaBM


Artist Enrichment Grant from Kentucky Foundation for Women, to pay for writing, music composition, and workshopping of the play Lady Alhambra: A play with music.

This $6,700 will allow me to write and workshop Lady Alhambra: A play with music. It will also make it possible for me to hire a music composer and musical director; a choreographer; and rent a theatre where the play will be opened to audiences as a dramatized staged-reading with live music and some technical effects. This grant together with the money friends and family gave me for my birthday on a Facebook fundraiser ($1,741.13 after fees), has made this project I’m psyched for this project! (06/04/2021)


Beheading Columbus, is a developing project in Mercury Company III, presented Artists Repertory Theatre out of Portland, WA

What an artistic life-changing experience it is to workshop and perform (virtually) the role of SUSI, in this wonderful play written by Diana Burbano. This is the first time in my performance career I’ve been offered the role of a LatinX woman of Afro-Caribbean descent. The first time where my lived experiences and the lives of those I grew up with, will enrich my performance in a naturally authentic way.

Beheading Columbus follows two sisters down a trail of DNA deception and makes them face race and colorism in the Latinx community and in their own family. Lana looks white, Susi doesn’t and that's been a point of conflict their whole life. Through DNA testing they discover that Lana has a white father. The DNA test also reveals that Susi, who is mixed-race, has the genes for the Alzheimers that are destroying their mother. Add to that, they discover that the previously unknown other father is a fertility doctor who has sired at least 40 mixed-race children. Through love and a massive sense of humor, the sisters work at decolonializing themselves from the inside out. (05/2021)


Saturday Night Live Scholarship to pay for classes and coaching at the Second City Training Center

I’m happy to announce that I am one of four recipients of the SNL Scholarship for the Second City. For a period of 42 weeks, I will be preparing for a chance to audition for Saturday Night Live a year from now! SNL NBC has partnered with numerous comedy schools across the country, including Second City in Chicago, as part of their commitment to diversifying the pool of talent they hire from. I am excited to have been granted a scholarship to attend SC. The scholarship pays for the Conservatory Program, the Writing Program, and private coaching leading up to SNL auditions. (01/2021)

Click on the image for a detailed article from NPR, and click on the heading of this message for Second City’s own article.

2020

Lady Alhambra: A play with music

I am happy to announce that I am writing a full-length play adaptation of Lady Alhambra, the 15 minutes solo show I presented as part of my MFA coursework. I’m producing it under my own production company, Girl502 Productions. I plan on workshopping it in the Spring of 2021. I am happy to say that this has been made possible in part by donations my friends and family made via Facebook on my birthday. Thanks to the $1,741.13 (after fees) fundraised, I was able to set-up a website https://www.ladyalhambra.com/ and put away money to pay actors for the writing/editing workshop. If you’ve Instagram, you can follow the process by following the IG handle @lady.alhambra of by clicking https://www.instagram.com/lady.alhambra/


Chicago PD: Season 8 Episode 1 “Fighting Ghosts

Although my scene got cut (sad), I enjoyed the experience of working on set with the talented cast and crew of Chicago PD under the direction of Eriq La Salle. After this role, the same casting director invited me to audition for yet another role, and even though I did not get that role, it’s warming to know that Claire Simon Casting has finally laid eyes on me. That’s a big deal!

2019

DESTINOS: 3RD CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL LATINO THEATER FESTIVAL

Chicago Latino Theater Alliance and Urban Theater Company

Throughout the months of September and October, I had the opportunity to live in the role of Chalie, inside the world of “Back in The Day: An 80’s House Music Dancesical,” written by Miranda González. BITD was both a part of the fall season of Urban Theater Company and the program for the Chicago International Theater Festival.


VIOLET SURPRISE: FEMSLASH FEST

Otherworld Theatre Company

On the weekend of August 9th, 10th, and 11th, I was one in the trio cast of “Checkerboard Chicks,” written by Allison Fradkin and directed by Natividad Uehara. The play was written and performed for this fun festival organized by Iris Sowlat and Allison Fradkin, in collaboration with Otherworld Theatre Company. A festival composed of femslash fanfiction parodies meant to envision queer narratives and relationships for female characters from literature, TV, film, and theatre.


CHICAGO 24 HOUR PLAY FESTIVAL

Eclectic Full Contact Theatre Company

On Monday, July 15th I was one of 24 actors performing in one of 6 plays written and produced within 24 hours. It was a great challenge to memorize and block a sizeable script overnight and a few hours in the day. My team was awesome! I had major fun as a cast member of “The Continuing Adventures of the Hot Dog Squad” by Lyle Sauer.


JIMMY & JOHNNIE

Judy’s Beat Lounge, Second City

On July 7th, my newly formed improv ensemble, Mr. Suave, was invited to open for one of Second City’s established improv shows, Jimmy & Johnnie. We were given 13 minutes of stage time which is a big deal in this town for a newly formed ensemble. We met during our time together as a coached ensemble by the brilliant John Hildreth,for Second City. Stay tuned for future performances if you’re in the Chicago area.


TIGHT 5

Second City Training Center, Chicago

May 3rd at Judy’s Beat Lounge was my first performance on a Chicago stage. It was for my Stand Up class performance. I was introduced to the multifaceted world of standup comedy. During my time in class, I worked on creating my best five minutes of comedy and I am happy with the results. I am no comedy expert and don’t consider myself a standup comic at all, but the experience was very insightful. I highly recommend all actors to experience a structured course in standup comedy at some point in their career. You can see 3mins of the tight 5 by clicking on the picture, but WARNING - vulgar content involved.


SERGIO’S MUSEUM

Theatre[502]

February 15th - March 3rd, Baron’s Theater

This spring, I was presented with a most yearned opportunity to perform with Theatre[502], one of Louisville’s most reputable professional theatre companies. Even more exciting, is that I got to work with old friends, playwrights Steve Moulds and Diana Grisanti, who made this play her directorial debut. What made this performance extra special is that Sergio’s Museum is Louisville’s first production of a play in English done by an all-Latinx cast; an eventful stride for Louisville’s theatre community. I played the supporting roles of Carmen and Collector, and here’s what Arts Louisville had to say, “As Sergio’s mentally unstable mother Gabriela Castillo delivers a knockout performance. Castillo is equally magnificent in her second role, that of a mysterious art collector with questionable motives. In both roles, Castillo glides across the stage with grace and power.” Jason Cooper for Arts Louisville

2018

TEMPEST EDUCATIONAL TOUR

The Warehouse Theatre Education Tour Ensemble

September 28th - October 23rd

This fall 2018, I worked for The Warehouse Theatre in Greenville, SC, in their ongoing education outreach program Education Tour: Accessible Shakespeare Across the States. I had a phenomenal time playing the role of Ariel in an all-female production of The Tempest, directed by Mallory Pellegrino. As a teaching artist, I learnt a lot from the dynamic ways in which children of all grade levels and backgrounds experience and embody the action-driven language of Shakespeare.


MFA IN ACTING, University of South Carolina

Friday, May 10, Graduation

I’ve officially graduated with an MFA in Acting from the University of South Carolina. As part of my internship year, I worked in South Carolina and my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. I decided to round off my internship by signing up for a couple of courses in Improvisation and Stand-Up comedy at the Second City in Chicago, which influenced my decision to remain in the Windy City for some time in my career.

One of the most palpable challenges of the Professional Actors Training Program at UofSC was writing, producing, and acting my original 15-minute solo show which I titled, Lady Alhambra, an ode to Hamlet and Cuban film La Bella del Alhambra, where a Cuban-American showgirl learns her true identity after an encounter with the spirit of her recently deceased mother. In appreciation of the challenge, I’ve included a picture from the show.