Name: Consuelo G. Flores
Hometown: East Los Angeles
Current Town: Los Angeles
Affiliations: MFA – Antioch University, Los Angeles; Writing Member of Fierce Backbone Theater Company, Hollywood.
Q: How do you self-identify?
A: I identify as Chicana.
Q: Tell me about Soul Sacrifice.
A: Soul Sacrifice focuses on the impact the Vietnam War had on a Mexican immigrant family in East Los Angeles, as told through the eyes of a young girl whose brother has been drafted and whose siblings are organizing a march against the war.
Q: What else are you working on now?
A: My next play, I See Superman Flying In My Eyes, is about two siblings in an extraordinarily competitive family. The older, “golden child” surpassed his family’s expectations to become a high-profile attorney while the younger “failure” defied the family and became an artist. In their youth, the “golden child” had saved the life of the “failure,” and at the time the story takes place, the older sibling is facing dire consequences for his actions that lead him to ask his younger sister for help.
I’m also completing a magical realism play entitled The Waiter that takes place in a café at a Oaxacan zócalo on the eve of Día de los Muertos.
Q: What have been the defining moments of your journey as a playwright?
A: There have been a few, among them the work I did early on as part of ASCO in the 1980s, founding my own performance art group “Alienz” and working with Los Illegals and Mabou Mines in the late 1980s as part of Re-cher-chez at MacArthur Park, collaborating with Latina visual and performing artists in the collective LA Coyota in the 1990s, presenting my 10-year retrospective of the work I wrote and performed at the Armory Center for the Arts in the 2000s, and finally writing and directing plays in the 2010s, specifically at the Frida Kahlo Theater.
Q: Who have been your playwriting mentors and heroes?
A: Though they don’t necessarily know it, Luis Alfaro, Herbert Siguenza, Monica Palacios, Diane Rodriguez, Evelina Fernandez, and my husband, Clifford Stephen Blackburn.
Q: What advice do you have for Latin@ playwrights at the beginning of their career?
A: Don’t assume that people know the story—even if it’s a news item. People want the details and they want to hear the story from a new perspective.
Q: What else should we know about you?
A: I’m a prolific Day of the Dead artist. I’ve not only designed and built multiple altars, I’ve also created fashions, masks, and multimedia art for the celebration. I’ve presented lectures, workshops, and seminars on the history and art of the Day of the Dead at colleges, universities, galleries, museums, and cultural centers throughout the United States and in Mexico as well as consulted for the entertainment industry on the authentic representation of the cultural celebration, specifically “Blood In, Blood Out,” and “Mi Familia.” I’ve also led guided Day of the Dead tours for Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation for the last three years.
***For more on Consuelo G. Flores, see:
- Consuelo G. Flores bio at Frida Kahlo Theater
- Consuelo G. Flores at Fierce Backbone
- “Consuelo Flores Brings the Dead to Life” – Gordon Lee Johnson (KCET)
- Check out Consuelo G. Flores’ Day of the Dead Fashions