This Saturday, women from El/La, the Mission’s TransLatina center, will perform a variety show at the Brava Theatre.
One of six community-based events sponsored by the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the show is directed by artists Xandra Ibarra and Davend. And Mission Local spoke to two of the performers, Mexico-native Jovna Luna, 28, and Lucía Pérez, a 50-year-old native of Nicaragua, who has lived in San Francisco for 38 years.
ML: Have you been in any shows like this before?
Luna: Well, before, when I was a younger (laughs) I used to do shows, eight years ago. [For the Brava Theatre show] I’m going to perform, [dance and act]. The [original] artist’s name is Alejandra. She is part of the group Sentido Supuesto. The song is titled “Únete a la Fiesta“ (Join the Party) and “Amigas y Rivals” (Friends and Rivals).
ML: What does this show mean to the TransLatina community?
Luna: For me, it means being able to express what I feel. To expose what one goes through, your experiences, and more than anything, it’s something that I like to do.
ML: Tell me about “Únete a la Fiesta?” I’ve never heard the song.
Luna: I work with these TransLatina ladies, so this is my everyday life. During the day, we are a group of ladies that like to hang out, we enjoy going out, and at night we undergo a transformation – we put on makeup and [experience] the magic of [that] transformation.
ML: Is that what the song is about?
Luna: Ummm, yes (laughing). They are two songs made into one – half and half. “Únete a la Fiesta” is the invitation for girls that during the day do one thing, and during the night put on makeup and [live] the magic. The other half of the song is about all of them being friends and rivals at the same time because they like the same guy.
ML: What do you expect of the show?
Luna: To be a success and that the audience enjoys it… I think I will do this one, and that’s it. I just want to feel the moment’s magic – a reminder of what I felt in the past.
And here are excerpts from our interview with Lucía Pérez:
ML: Why did you decide to participate in this show?
Pérez: Because I have never participated in an artistic event at this level…
The opportunity to present our creations on a community level interests me. To show another side of transwomen to people in the community, to [let them] know that we are people with the same creative aspirations – we have talent.
I’m going to recite a poem I wrote. It’s called, Oh, Lago de la Muerte (Oh, Death’s Lake). It’s in Spanish, but there will be a translation projected on a screen during the show.
ML: Do you identify as a poet?
Pérez: I identify as an artistic person more than a poet (laughs).
ML: Anything else you would like to share about the show?
Pérez: It’s a great opportunity for the trans community, thanks to the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. I hope they continue to give [us] these creative opportunities.
The variety show will be 8 p.m. Saturday, July 26 at the Brava Theatre in the Mission. The show will be in English and performances in Spanish will be translated. Admission is free.