Dr. Hortense Gerardo is a playwright, filmmaker, and anthropologist, and serves as the Director of the Anthropology, Performance, and Technology (APT) Program at the University of California, San Diego. Her works have been performed nationally and internationally, including: LaMama Experimental Theatre, the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) in Boston, the International Performance Art Festival, the Venice Biennale, the Nuit Blanche Festival in Toronto, and The Fence International Playwright Network. Hortense was the Artist-in-Residence at the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) where she created the audience-interactive, site-informed play, THE MEDFIELD ANTHOLOGY, and the award-winning documentary films, THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC: A MOTHER’S RECKONING and SMALL STEPS: DANCES OF RESILIENCE, recipient of award for Best Environmental Film at the 2021 Vancouver Independent Film Festival, and Best Dance Film at the 2021 Rome Film Awards. She received a 2021 Artist Fellowship in Dramatic Writing from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Leighton Artist Residency at Banff, and was a Company One Theatre Playlab Unit Playwright, a New World Theatre Masterclass Playwright Fellow, and a Dance Fellow at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. She will have a World Premiere of her play, MIDDLETON HEIGHTS in March 2022 by Umbrella Arts Center Dr. Gerardo is a co-founder of the Asian American Playwright Collective (AAPC) and currently serves on the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) Council and on the Board of Directors of the Woods Hole Film Festival leading the Screenwriting Competition. Dr. Gerardo received her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in Anthropology and Performing Arts from Boston University.
WEBSITE AND SOCIAL MEDIA
LI: Hortense Gerardo
MORE ABOUT ME
If I could change one “thing” about theater, it would be the perception of it among people outside of the theatre community as a frivolous, expendable, somewhat fusty form of entertainment engaged in by the very wealthy, elite and/or deluded. Of course, this “thing” is a complex, systemic hydra, and addressing its many heads would involve a paradigmatic, cultural shift in the way we perceive the significance of live performance. But some of the answers may lie in the economics of providing theater work that is relevant to diverse audiences, and one way to do that, is to present work by a diversity of writers. There has been a cultural shift in recent years that has allowed a diversity in playwrights’ stories reaching the stage, and this has been very promising. It seems that the “final frontier” of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the theatre has to do with ageism, particularly against women. So I am very thankful for projects like Honor Roll that are raising awareness of the need to produce more stories from this particular demographic not out of a desire to meet quotas, but out of a genuine recognition of the relevance of stories from people with lived experience.
WHAT I'M WORKING ON
I’m always juggling several projects in different media at once, for better or worse. Right now I’m: 1. Writing a dramedy TV pilot 2. Revising a commissioned full-length work 3. Editing a short documentary film about an anthropology fieldwork project 4. Storyboarding a new media project based on an ancient text
Asian American Pacific Islander, Comic Tragedy, Tragicomedy, New Media, Site-informed Work, Allegory, Metaphor Social Consciousness