Full casting has been revealed for American Repertory Theater's upcoming world premiere staging of Real Women Have Curves: The Musical. Tony winner Sergio Trujillo is directing and choreographing the stage adaptation of Josefina López's 1993 play, which also had a 2002 film adaptation. Performances begin December 6 at the Massachusetts company's Loeb Drama Center, with opening night set for December 14. The run will continue through January 21, 2024.
Lucy Godínez will lead the company as Ana, with Shelby Acosta as Prima Flaca, Satya Chávez as Izel, Florencia Cuenca as Estela, Janet Dacal as Mrs. Spitz, Sandra Valls as Prima Fulvia, Carla Jimenez as Pancha, Justina Machado as Carmen, Edward Padilla as Raúl, Sage as Henry, and Jennifer Sánchez as Rosalí. Shadia Fairuz, Elisa Galindez, Michael Keyloun, Christopher M. Ramirez, and Arusi Santi will make up the ensemble, with swings Amy Lizardo, Kayla Quiroz, and Gus Stuckey rounding out the company. Casting is by Victor Vazquez and Duncan Stewart.
Joy Huerta and Benjamin Velez have written the music and lyrics with a book by Lisa Loomer. The work follows a first-generation child of Mexican immigrants torn between joining the family garment business or embarking on her own dream of attending college in NYC.
THe production will feature music supervision by Nadia DiGiallonardo, scenic design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costume design by Wilberth Gonzalez and Paloma Young, lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Walter Trarbach, and projection design by Hana Jim. Roberto Sinha is music director. Molly Meg Legal will serve as production stage manager, with assistant stage managers Alfredo Macias and Cate Agis.
"The night Kamala Harris was named candidate for Vice President I understood why this story should be revisited today," said Loomer in a statement. "We are living in a moment of BIPOC women truly coming into power, and in each of their acceptance speeches, they thank their immigrant mothers. This musical is about that relationship, the complications of being the daughter of an immigrant mother. In a sense, it is about how a young woman becomes a Kamala Harris or an AOC [Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez]. And it’s full of the passion, pain, desires, conflicts—and humor—that beg to be musicalized."
"Part of my affinity for Real Women Have Curves is a desire to pay homage to the women—to our mothers, our aunts, our cousins, our friends—who have given us so much," adds Trujillo. "I want the Latino community, the brown community to see themselves in these stories. My experience as the son of undocumented immigrants inspires me to do justice to our community."