Name: Josefina López
Hometown: San Luis Potosi, Mexico
Current Town: Los Angeles/Boyle Heights, California
Affiliations: CASA 0101 Theater
Q: How do you self-identify?
A: Latina, Mexican-American, Chicana
Q: Tell me about Hipsteria.
A: Imagine a Latino neighborhood like Boyle Heights in 2026 almost completely gentrified—a single mother, praised for her community activism in kicking out the gangs, gets kicked out of her own apartment with her thirteen year old son who is embarrassed to be living on the streets with her, and discovers her apartment building is being turned into a dog hotel by a pair of “Hipsters” who bought the building that was illegally deemed “condemned.”
Q: What else are you working on now?
A: Too many projects to name… But the ones that are worth mentioning are the musical version of Real Women Have Curves, I’m adapting a famous Mexican telenovela for U.S. TV, rewriting an adaptation called An Enemy of the Pueblo, rewriting a comedic screenplay about pirates called Pirate Academy, writing a one woman show about my passion for the paranormal and the supernatural Standing in the Light, and lastly I’m going to start writing a play called Ladies Who Tech, a sci-fi, feminist comedy about ladies in the high tech corporate world who get passed up for a special project designing the software for a female robot. The play also deals with time travel towards the past and the future and Susan B. Anthony, Frida, Joan of Arc, Harriet Tubman make an appearance. I can’t wait to write it!
Q: What have been the defining moments of your journey as a playwright?
A: Getting my first one act play Simply Maria or the American Dream produced at 18, getting my first full length play Real Women Have Curves produced when I was 21 and getting a movie deal right after, getting my play made into a film that won the Audience Award and Acting Award at Sundance in 2002 and starring as Ana in the San Diego Rep production of Real Women Have Curves in 1994.
Q: Who have been your playwriting mentors and heroes?
A: Luis Valdez, Marlana Meyer, Irene Fornes, and Henrik Ibsen are some of my playwright heroes.
Q: What advice do you have for Latin@ playwrights at the beginning of their career?
A: Buy the Dramatists Sourcebook and enter as many playwriting contests like NUESTRAS VOCES at Repertoire Espanol—the deadline is June 1st, so get to it! Keep rewriting and keep meeting deadlines! When you meet a deadline you are already a winner because your word is in integrity with your dreams.
Q: What else should we know about you?
A: I took up writing to heal myself. I was suffering from depression, ADD, and I was suicidal. As a healer now I come to realize what I really had was a shattered soul. I am so happy that I was able to write about my trauma and express it on the page and the stage. I now see how theater is a shamanistic process that takes all that is hidden in the dark and shame and brings it to the light to surrender it to the light and the creator. I now get how writing saved my life. Playwriting is not just about telling a story, but about taking trauma from the unconscious and making it conscious so that it can be released and healed… I really can say that by being a playwright my life is better for it.
***For more on Josefina López, see:
- Josefina López’s Personal Website
- Your Story Matters, TEDex Talk – Josefina López
- Que Onda? with Josefina López and CASA 0101 Theater – Trevor Boffone (Café Onda/HowlRound)
- Artist Hero: Josefina López – Claudia Herrera Hudson
- Josefina López: In Her Own Words – latinopia.com
- A ‘Wild Zone’ of Her Own: Locating the Chicana Experience in the Theatre Works of Josefina López” – Trevor Boffone (Gender Forum)