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Selling Democracy

Please come see my new show (in development) as part of The Marsh Theater’s Times Unseen Initiative.

This Wednesday, July 11, 2018 at 7:30 pm at The San Francisco Marsh Theater.

Tickets $15 at the door or $17 online ($2 service charge). More info and tickets at:

There are two performers that night presenting for a combined 90 minutes (no intermission). Here are the descriptions of our stories from the The Marsh website:

“I WANT TO SELL DEMOCRACY” by Irma Herrera How do we get fair and representative government? By making sure we have well-educated voters. Stacey Barrera, a social justice activist with a master’s degree, and a decade of work under her belt, returns to school to get a teaching credential. As a social studies teacher in an overwhelming Mexican-American public high school in Corpus Christi, Texas, Miss Barrera’s mission is to sell democracy.

“ON THE BRINK” by Linda Joy “On the Brink” introduces audiences to people living in “the other California” and contrasts their concerns with that of professional people in the Bay Area. As part of the Times Unseen initiative, for the past two years Linda Joy has been listening to people living in Red Colusa County, the second poorest county in California with an economy based on agriculture. Living at the Stony Creek Apartments for adults over 55, she experiences the challenges of living in a remote affordable housing complex, helping her understand her neighbors to some extent. But unlike the other residents, she brings a sociologist’s eye and ear to her observations of the area. In listening to what people repeatedly talk about without prompting from her, she discovers their preoccupations and worldviews and then brings these characters to life onstage.

Artist Biographies

IRMA HERRERA is a playwright and solo performer. Her one-woman show, Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?, explores themes of identity and the importance of valuing cultural differences. Herrera spent five years as a journalist and three decades as a public-interest lawyer promoting gender equality and advocating on behalf of ethnic and racial minorities.

LINDA JOY – While spending 16 years as a university professor and researcher with a PhD in Sociology and another in Language, Culture and Cognition, Linda Joy yearned to exercise her spontaneity, imagination and creativity through the arts. So while her academic peers were readying their promotion files and cranking out publications, she spent summers making up scripts for solo shows at obscure venues, doing improv, writing poetry for public readings, and experimenting with video and mixed media. Then she leapt into the unknown. She now brings attention to social issues through solo performance, written commentaries, and lectures for life-long learning programs. She created and leads The Imagination Playshop for Adults with its motto: “Question, Imagine, Improvise, Create.”

The Times Unseen Initiative

Several performers were invited by The Marsh Theater to participate in the Times Unseen Initiative. This project is the brainchild of David Ford, the award winning veteran creator of stories for over 30 years. He serves as the Times Unseen Initiative Director, with Rebecca Fisher as the Associate Director. It was launched shortly after the 2016 elections ushered in the largest political reversal our country has experienced in the post-World War II era.

The following are David Ford’s thoughts on the project, as shared on The Marsh website.

Since the election, the news is filled with who is winning, who is losing, and what attention-getting statement a politician has made today. Highly polarized, citizens are passionate about their particular fraction of the political rainbow, regardless of the hue.

Beyond the news, Americans fall in love, work, get sick, die . . . experience the drama of daily life. We have decided to take our cue from Russian author Svetlana Alexievich, who proved the power of exploring history through personal stories in her magnificent book Secondhand Time. In what ways are political turmoils affecting the personal life of Americans?

This project will chronicle the effect of political change on individuals.

One of the stark lessons of the recent election is the ideological divide between regions in America. We have a team of Marsh artists who have personal connections to the disparate social, geographical, and political regions of America. We are asking them to interview people – Americans talking to Americans about family, love, safety, health, finances etc., in a time of political change. And our artists will bring what they hear back to the Marsh and make theater of it.

Times Unseen: because we are in new territory politically, and because politics, for better or for worse, are about promises of a changed future, times as yet unseen. Times Unseen will culminate in a Festival of New Work the weekend of October 19-21, in time for the 2018 mid-term elections, with workshop performances along the way (end of David Ford’s thoughts on the Times Unseen Initiative).

I am very excited to share the stage with Linda Joy and to introduce you to her work, if you haven’t already seen her perform. I've watched as she has developed and shaped this material over the past year plus. You will reflect long and hard on the themes we cover. Money back guarantee if you decide it wasn’t worth your time. Really.

The San Francisco Marsh

1062 Valencia St. (24th Street BART)

Wednesday, July 11, 2018 @7:30 pm

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